People line the streets of downtown Raleigh for the St. Patrick’s Day Parade despite cold temperatures

RALEIGH, NC (WTVD) – Intense overnight showers in the area have cleared in time for the return of the St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Raleigh.

Filled with fun, camaraderie and appreciation for a return to tradition after the pandemic break, die-hard parade fans showed up and lined the parade route through downtown Raleigh. Hardy Parade fans showed up and lined the parade route through downtown Raleigh.

Some who arrived early for the best views of the festivities were unfazed by the overcast skies.

“Well, it would be nice if we had a bit more sunshine. But it’s not snowing and it’s not raining, so I guess we should be happy,” said Vikki Grace, a fan of the show.

But the wind and a drop in temperature convinced some to bundle up, especially if they were coming with children. Many in the parade bundled up in green coats, scarves and hats, as green is the traditional color associated with Ireland.

“These are leftover props from years ago,” fan Sophie Hansen said.

“Recycled every year. Hat, and my feather boa is a must,” said Mary Kay Clifford.

Chief Meteorologist Don Schwenneker hosted ABC11’s online coverage with Kelly Mellage, whose father organized the quirky, modern St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Raleigh before his death in 2018.

“He wore, every St. Patrick’s Day, a green mustache. That first St. Patrick’s Day in 2019 was six months after he passed away,” Mellage said. “And every gentleman in HAE, the Ancient Order of Hibernia Organization here in Raleigh, all painted his mustache green…but everywhere I looked. It was such a sweet tribute for him and a surprise for me.”

ABC11’s Eyewitness News Crew joined the parade. Kweilyn Murphy, Ana Rivera, Amber Rupinta and Dejuan Hoggard all smiled at fans at the parade as did Jackson Hansen, who wore his green t-shirt.

“It says, I love it. I don’t know. Lucky Beer? – All in the spirit of the day.” said Hansen.

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