St. Patrick's Day Parade   Part II --- Stories from an Irish lady who used to participate in the parade.

Stories by one of our friends who usually participates in the St. Paul St. Patrick's Day Parade: She is half Irish and half Swedish.

Her clan usually marches as a group in the parade, but this year St. Patrick's Day was on a Monday, when everybody had to work. So they decided not to do the parade this year.  For her clan this day is one of the annual union and after the parade they will go on a picnic to have pizzas since her uncle has a big portable oven for pizzas to serve for 50 people;  this is cool! 

For parades, two leaders of the group hold a banner which paints the family name like
Pic 1.  Now we can understand why some banners were followed by many people like 100 while some by fewer people like 10 or 20 because some clans are small while are big.  We saw many clans*.  This reminds me of the US because Irish used to be new immigrants too.  We're sure that they have been proud of that they are Irish as successful settlers in the US because their ancestors ventured into this country ages ago. Besides clans, we saw at least few kinds of Irish dogs which are famous.  Also, bagpipers led the parade.  We thought the bagpipes were more for the Scottish, but it looks like they represent the Irish as well.  Parade marchers often interact with spectators in many ways, which is kind of nice.

We stopped by the Landmark Center to check what the Irish (Step) Dance & Music looked like**.   Youths on the stage, the majority of whom were girls, were performing the Irish Step Dance to live music.  This dance looked the same as River Dance. (See pix)  The Irish Step Dance (maybe the Celtic Dance as well) has been popular since River Dance and Lord of the Dance became popular in the 1990s.  The music is so cheerful.  There are several booths that sell Irish stuff.  Most of the crafts are Celtic.  The metallic Celtic items look really cool!

By the way, the St. Paul Parade started at
noon and the Minneapolis Parade was performed in the evening.  We heard that on this day all the public buses in Twin Cities Metro areas were free for people not to drive cars. 

People may ask you, "Are you Irish?"  Probably "Good answer" would be, "Yes, I'm Irish for Today."  (Note: Everybody is Irish for this day)  After this, if someone continues to ask you, "How about tomorrow?", then you may say, for example,  "I'll be Japanese tomorrow."

Words: family <  clan <  tribe

*) For examples, Callagan, Callaghan, Carrigan,
Coleman , Conley, Connelly, Conroy, Fitzpatrick, Gibbons, Kennedy, Madden, McMahon, O'Malley, O'Neill, O'Shea, O'Toole

**) At an event you usually get a wrist band by paying the admission ($4 for this event) .  You have to put it around your wrist and the two ends fasten together by adhesives while at the event place.  This wrist band is a kind of neat way to check if a person has already paid the admission or not.  Note: It's impossible to give the wristband to others because you have to tear the band.

Japanese | St. Patrick Part I

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