Krewe of Killarney prepares for parade today

Published 12:00 am Saturday, March 17, 2001

Main Street in Natchez will shine with green today as Miss-Lou residents hold their annual St. Patrick’s Day parade. &uot;Everybody’s Irish on St. Patrick’s Day,&uot; said Jean Williams Farrar, immediate past president of the Krewe of Killarney, which organizes the parade.

The day’s events are a way to honor the man who brought Christianity to Ireland in an enjoyable way. &uot;(The parade is) honoring a saint but you’re still having a good time,&uot; Farrar said.

Saturday marks the 11-annual St. Patrick’s Day parade in Natchez. Each year the Krewe of Killarney organizes the parade and picks a different resident to serve as an honorary St. Patrick.

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The holiday events include a dutch treat 10 a.m. brunch at the Ramada, noon Mass at St. Mary Basilica and the parade at 4 p.m.

The public is invited to walk in the parade.

&uot;Just about every year we’ve had someone from Ireland visiting on St. Patrick’s Day,&uot; Farrar said.

Participants will gather at about 4 p.m. at Memorial Park and will begin their walk down Main Street to the fountain on Broadway at about 4:30 p.m. They will throw green candy, beads and other green trinkets into the crowd as the walk, Farrar said.

Father of Waters, a Scottish marching band, will lead the parade.

The band is also marching in a St. Patrick’s Day parade at noon Saturday in Jackson but will arrive in Natchez as soon as possible, Farrar said.

&uot;If we have to hold the parade it’s because they’re on their way from Jackson,&uot; Farrar said.

After the walkers reach Broadway, Mike Thompson, who is serving as St. Patrick XI, will ceremoniously drive the snakes out of Natchez. In addition to singing Irish songs, the group will also hear proclamations in memory of the late Frank Byrne, Natchez’s St. Patrick I and Dr. Paul Doherty, Natchez’s St. Patrick IV.

For safety reasons skates, skate boards, scooters, bicycles and motorized vehicles will not be permitted in the parade.

A horse and carriage will carry some of the older men who served as St. Patrick in previous years.

Natchez Police Chief Huff said the Krewe of Killarney has been issued an open container permit for the parade.

People of legal age can have alcohol in paper or plastic cups along the parade route from 4 to 6 p.m.

Police will not restrict parking for the parade but will block Main Street to traffic at 4:30 p.m., Huff said.