BUTTE - “I’ve been a wild rover for many a year, and I spent all me money on whiskey and be … “ — Wait a minute, where’s the parade? Okay, I’m a little early for the St. Patrick’s Day parade, but Uptown businesses and the city are already preparing for Butte’s favorite Irish traditions.
“We’ve been extra-ordering for the last month, putting it in our cooler, paying for it, it will be ice cold for St. Patrick’s Day,” said Maloney’s Bar co-owner Gene Riordan.
Parade organizers say there are more than 60 entrants in this year’s parade which starts at noon on St. Patrick’s Day. The parade will head west on Granite Street, turn south on Montana, and then east on Park Street.
“Expect a lot more people. Friday is, of course, the start to a big weekend. I haven’t heard what (meteorologist) Mike Heard has to say about it yet, but I expect he’s going to give us some sunshine,” said Parade Director Pat Ryan.
Though big crowds are expected, people should have no problem finding a spot to watch the parade.
“It’s a shorter parade route than the Fourth of July parade, but there’s lots of room, come up, join us in the parade, join us in celebrating our Irish heritage,” said Ryan.
With the crowds, some areas of Uptown Butte will be closed to motorized traffic throughout St. Patrick’s Day.
“We thought it best to keep the road closures in those areas to thru-traffic to keep the pedestrians and people safe,” said Butte Event Coordinator Ed Heard.
Gene Riordan said this celebration is not just going to be good for his bar.
“Man, it’s been a long winter. I mean, everyone’s looking forward to go out and have some fun,” said Riordan.
MTN News will re-broadcast the parade, which starts at noon, on the CW Montana at 1 p.m. on Friday.