Organizers say Springfield’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade is the biggest downstate parade to celebrate the “luck o’ the Irish.” The 34th Annual Parade with the theme “ShamRock ‘n Roll” kicks off at the “craic o’ noon” on Saturday, March 17 and thousands of viewers are expected along the parade route.
The parade starts on Jefferson & 6th heading west to 5th; Heading south on 5th to Capitol; Heading North on 6th to the Reviewing Stand, (this is our Family Friendly Area) then to Washington heading east, back to the beginning; the Horace Mann parking lot. Review the parade route>
- Streets will close at 9 am on Saturday morning and reopen at 6 am on Sunday
- For the first time, there is a St. Patrick’s Day Parade Race from 9-10 am; Race starts and finishes on Washington between 5th and 6th.
- 6th Street is considered Family Viewing area and 5th Street is considered more of the party street
- The Hy-Vee Family Fun Fair will be 1-4 pm and is located at the Old State Capitol
- Several parking lots in the area will charge one $5 fee for the day, including lots at 2nd and Washington, south of Obed’s on 6th Street behind the AT&T building, and the county lot on Adams across from the convention center. Free parking is available at the lots on 4th St. behind Augie’s and The Alamo.
- If you plan to consume alcohol outdoors, you must purchase a $1 wristband from retail establishments. Patrons who purchase will be allowed to have open containers on 5th Street between Monroe and Jefferson after the parade is over and while bars are open. No glass or coolers are allowed in the Parade area.
- “I need a ride.” If you overindulge from 4 pm to 5 am, ask a bar manager for a cab voucher, courtesy of the SPD and Fire Department. Take your numbered voucher to pick up points at 4th and Adams or 6th and Adams. Lincoln Cab Co. will be there to take you home anywhere in Springfield. This safety program is paid for by the department’s DUI budget funded by previous offenders’ fees.