Parade set for Wednesday

John Richmeier
The Leavenworth Times

After being canceled last year because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade will return next week to downtown Leavenworth.

The parade is scheduled to begin at noon Wednesday. This will be the parade’s 38th year.

Tim Scanlon, a coordinator for the annual parade, said he does not know how many entries there will be for this year’s parade. He said entries have been “rolling in” in recent days.

“It should still be a decent parade,” he said.

The grand marshals for this year’s parade are Ed and Anne Keeley. They were chosen to be the grand marshals of last year’s parade before that event was canceled.

“They didn’t get a chance to serve and we thought it was only fair,” Scanlon said of the decision to feature the Keeleys in this year’s parade.

Last year’s parade was canceled by city officials because of concerns about COVID-19.

The parade is organized each year by a private committee, but permission from the city is needed for the event.

Leavenworth city commissioners gave their OK for this year’s parade in early February.

Wednesday’s parade will begin at Fourth and Cherokee streets and travel east to Second Street. The parade then will turn north, traveling to Delaware Street. The parade will then turn west. At Seventh Street, the parade will turn south. The parade will turn east at Cherokee Street and end at Fifth and Cherokee streets.

A change was made to the parade route this year to prevent it from passing by the area of the Riverfront Community Center, 123 S. Esplanade St. A COVID-19 vaccine clinic will be taking place at the community center. And a parking lot south of the community center will be designated for the vaccine clinic, according to Leavenworth Police Chief Pat Kitchens.

Because of COVID-19, people participating in this year’s parade will be asked to wear masks and stay within their own groups, according to Scanlon.

A city ordinance requires people to wear masks while “outdoors in public spaces and unable to maintain a 6-foot distance between individuals (not including individuals who reside together) with only infrequent or incidental moments of closer proximity.”

The annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Tonganoxie is scheduled to begin at 11 a.m. Saturday at Fourth and Main streets in Tonganoxie, according to the Tonganoxie Business Association’s Facebook page.

In Leavenworth, Immaculate Conception Church, 711 N. Fifth St., will host an Irish Stew from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sunday.

The cost is $7 for a carryout meal of Irish stew, soda bread and a cookie, according to the Facebook page for the Immaculate Conception-St. Joseph Parish.

A St. Patrick’s Day Mass will take place at 9 a.m. Wednesday at Immaculate Conception Church.

Twitter: @LVTNewsJohnR