Painting Douglas green in lead up to St. Paddy’s Day
DOUGLAS – Douglas was painted green with the luck of the Irish Saturday night at the seventh annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade.
While the Irish and non-Irish alike will officially celebrate St. Patrick’s Day this weekend, thousands of people took to the streets of Douglas one week early for the annual parade.
The annual parade serves to honour Douglas’s predominantly Irish population, while inviting anyone and everyone to take part in the festivities and enjoy an evening of good ol’ Irish fun.
Hosted once again by the Douglas Lions Club, the parade attracted scores of people from across the region to either take part in, or watch the spectacle.
Welcoming nearly 60 floats, hundreds of costumed participants and thousands of spectators, the parade stayed true to tradition as the Village of Douglas was painted green during the unforgettable evening.
Floats – decorated with rainbows, pots of gold, clovers, leprechauns and scores of Irish flags – rode on by as the procession was accompanied by traditional and modern Irish music.
Joining the floats were antique cars, large and miniature horses along with walking troops of parade participants who were clad in all kinds of green attire.
“My wife and I have been involved with the Douglas St. Paddy’s Parade for the last seven and we just love it so much. We love getting dressed up, bringing out our miniature horses and saying hi to people we haven’t seen in a few months,” said Kenny Keill. “We’re at every parade they have for Douglas and we also take part in the Renfrew, Cobden and Eganville Santa Claus parades. We just love the community feel to the parades.”
As the thousands of spectators hollered and cheered from the sidelines, participants in the parade waved to them and handed out lucky treats from their pots of gold.
Preston Cull, one of a quartet on the parade committee members who make the magic happen, expressed that the annual parade serves as a family affair and a homecoming for many during the week leading up to St. Patrick’s Day.
“We get people from all across the region and all over Ontario who come home to be with their family and to take part in this tradition every year,” he said. “We even have one lady from B.C. here tonight.”
Cull said that the night was another grand success that beautifully celebrated the Irish spirit.
“Everything is going great, people are happy and we couldn’t be more pleased by the turnout,” said Cull.
The parade kicked off a week of Homecoming activities in Douglas leading up to the main event on Saturday, March 17 when people flock from all around for the daylong party at the Douglas Tavern. Other events include Irish Stew Tuesday night at St. Michael’s Catholic School, Irish Trivia Wednesday night at the tavern, euchre Thursday night and a pub night on Friday. email@example.com
Dressed up in green from head to toe, Kenny and Kim Keill were more than happy to bring out their miniature horses and show off their Irish spirit at the Douglas St. Patrick's Day Parade.
Decked out in giant clovers, O'Brien Farms brought the luck of the Irish to the St. Patrick's Day Parade.
A number of horses joined the procession at this year's Douglas St. Patrick's Day Parade.
Rainbows, shamrocks, leprechauns and a whole lot of green adorned the floats at the Douglas St. Patrick's Day Parade Saturday night.
Among this year's floats was an depiction of an old-fashioned display from Bromley Farm Supply. Float participants (from left) Seamus McHale, Patrick Enright, Elizabeth Monroe, Ben Huckabone and Rachel Huckabone.
Ryder Philips, of MacNamara's Band, gives a double thumbs up from the back of the float during the St. Patrick's Day Parade.
The Jarvis family (from left are Nick, Lyndsey and Blair) brought along their horse Marla to the Douglas St. Patrick's Day Parade.
Maddy Turcotte and Will Clarke, of MacNamara's Band, show off their funky guitars as they float on by during the parade.