Tonganoxie St. Patrick’s Parade rolling through downtown Saturday
Irish eyes likely will be smiling Saturday in downtown Tonganoxie.
And they might be nice and warm.
The 26th annual St. Patrick’s Parade will start at 10 a.m. near Fourth and Main streets and head west along Fourth Street.
Davo Howe, one of Saturday’s organizers, said the weather appears to be looking good for the weekend activity.
“We might have the warmest St. Patrick’s Parade in history,” Howe said. “I hope so anyway.”
Donna Hoegler, recently crowned Mrs. Kansas, is this year’s grand leprechaun.
Though the parade always has been the event’s focal point, several other events also are planned.
Pancakes will be served in the former Elle’s Diner at Fourth and Delaware from 7:30-10:30 a.m., while Tonganoxie PEO Chapter AT will start serving corned beef and cabbage at 10:30 a.m. at Tonganoxie United Methodist Church.
Cow patty bingo returns and will take place near the former depot.
Squares can be purchased for $5 each or 5 for $20 at Flashbacks, which is open 6 a.m.-1 p.m. weekdays and Saturday.
Flashbacks owner Charlie Conrad said squares would be sold Saturday morning if any still remained.
“Right up to poop time,” Conrad said with a laugh. “Until they throw the first pitch.”
Shortly after the parade, the cow will mosey over numbered squares. When the animal is ready to, well, go, whichever square gets the patty’s plop wins a cash prize.
For youths, a bounce house again will be set up in the Midwest Carpet parking lot.
Several downtown businesses also will have food and drinks.
City of Angels will have green cotton candy, while Wizard of Paws will serve popcorn. Downtown Drugstore will serve their traditional green cream soda and Flashbacks will be serving breakfast and lunch.
Parade entry forms can be picked up at Flashbacks, Jammin’ Java or City Hall.
Conrad said Monday he had about a dozen entries and expected many more to file in. He said entries also would be accepted on parade morning.
Per city ordinance, parade participants can give out candy, but they must walk beside the float to hand out the candy. It cannot be thrown from floats or vehicles.
Bagpipes will be back at this year’s celebration.
Howe said two musicians with St. Andrew Pipes and Drums would be performing in the parade and after it.
Conrad noted that someone portraying Kirby McRill, a longtime Leavenworth County resident, would be walking in the parade as well. McRill is the namesake of a benefit walk through Tonganoxie that will take place in June. Information about the walk will be available Saturday. Conrad, a member of Entrepreneurs Achieving Success Together, said the organization was sponsoring the walk, with proceeds to benefit the local Habitat for Humanity.
In year’s past, a green stripe magically has appeared along the parade route the morning of the parade. Conrad would like to see the green stripe return Saturday.
“We’re hoping the leprechaun comes through and shows us the path," Conrad said.