Preparing For Another Parade

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GIRARDVILLE -- St. Patrick's Day may have come and gone but folks in Girardville are gearing up for Saturday's parade, their busiest day of the year.

People in the Schuylkill County community call their St. Patty's parade the biggest small parade in the world.

Things are starting to look a little green in downtown Girardville. The porches are decorated, the tents are going up, and people like Fred McDonald can't wait for the 10th annual St. Patrick's parade.

"Next to Christmas, it's probably my favorite holiday. It's probably my favorite holiday, being Irish and all."

A few years ago former President Bill Clinton visited the parade. This year, Lieutenant Governor Jim Cawley will be here.

Parade committee chairman John McNelis is expecting crowds of 15,000 to 25,000 people.

"People came to me and said 'it's the biggest small parade in the world.' They said because of the way people come from far," McNellis said.

Officials say people from all over the state come to the parade, but it's the locals, the people who know the history of Girardville who really go out all with the decorations."

Girardville council president Charles Marquardt has won the house decorating contest for St. Patty's day several times.

"It's a long week for everybody here. We do a lot of things, but the town really comes alive on Saturday. We have a lot of vendors in, a lot of the stores, everything are open in town."

"Your cities you expect to have that kind of crowd. In a small town, it's something to see," McNelis said.

Something to see and something to be proud of.