Terry O'Shaughnessy

Hudson

Countdown to St. Paddy’s parade in Hudson begins

The organizers of Hudson’s annual St. Patrick’s Day parade are now in high gear putting together this year’s celebration of all things Irish — and enjoying a level of support from the town’s merchants that is unprecedented.

This year’s parade on March 16 will be the town’s fourth — and it has become one of the most popular events on Hudson’s calendar.

The first St. Paddy’s parade in 2010 was a huge, sort of unexpected, success that came out of the blue and left other towns a bit green with envy.

The parade committee that year applied for a permit for six floats for a nice little fun parade. But more than 50 floats, walkers, Scouts and Girl Guides, dancers and bands ended up being registered for the big day that first year.

Then about 6,000 people came into town to watch the parade. It was an amazing sight to see.

Everyone wore some kind of green — and it was said that every Dollar Store between Vaudreuil and Rigaud had been ransacked. There was a full range of leprechaun hats and shamrock sunglasses, and everything in between. Grown men died their beards green. Ladies wore their “Kiss Me I’m Irish!” signs at levels for easy reading.

In the years that followed, the crowds who line the parade route increased even more, and this year there’s every expectation that they will come out again. The registration for floats is already crazy.

One of the major aspects this year, and one that is hugely appreciated by the parade committee, is the level of support being offered by the merchants of Hudson.

Not only will they be decorating their storefronts with St. Patrick’s Day decorations and offering special stuff that Saturday, they are currently banding together to raise funds to help bring marching pipe and drum bands to the parade. The committee is very grateful.

“The merchants’ support is making a huge contribution to the 2013 parade,” said parade director Jim Beauchamp this week. “It’s just great to be working together like this.”

So the countdown clocks are set. There’s only a month to go before the parade on March 16 and there’s little time to waste.

It’s time to get to the stores to get our green stuff before the rush.

 

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