It's true- the second-largest St. Patrick's Day Parade in the entire state of Minnesota is held right in Crosslake, a stone's throw from the shores of the Whitefish Chain. This year the parade is on Saturday, March 18, and once again the town is expected to swell from its 2,000-person population to a crowd of more than 10,000 for the parade.
The celebration begins two days before the parade, on Thursday, March 16. That's when the first clue will be released for the Pot O'Gold Treasure Hunt. Follow the clues and find the lost Pot O'Gold to win a prize package valued at more than $600! One clue will be released per day for three days. The clues will be released at 9 a.m. each day on the event website and Facebook page.
On Saturday morning, start the day with a hot air balloon tether ride at the US Army Corps of Engineers Campground (weather permitting, no charge) from 8-11 a.m. There's also the Crosslake Firefighter's Pancake Breakfast from 8-11:30 a.m. at Crosslake Lutheran Church from. At 9:30 a.m., the Clover Dash 5k begins from Crosslake Town Square. Registration begins at 7:45 that morning at Whitefish Lodge and Suites.
Maucieri's will have food and beverage available in Town Square starting at 11 a.m., and they'll be serving corned beef, hot dogs and beer.
The parade lineup starts at noon on Swann Drive (near Town Square) and there'll be plenty of pre-parade festivities happening, including a brat and soda sale at Edina Realty, a Knights of Columbus food, beverage and warming tent, and more.
Then it's time for the main event! The parade begins at 2 p.m. It usually takes off from Town Square and makes its way through town, passing the Ace Hardware and Reed's Market, turning the corner by the stop sign at Andy's, and heading north along County Road 66. The judging booth for the floats will be in the former Exchange parking lot.
You'll have a great view of the parade from just about anywhere on the parade route. Remember that kids can grab candy from the floats, but parents need to make sure they stay off the road and away from the moving floats.
The fun doesn't end after the parade. Establishments all over town will be celebrating St. Patrick's day with fun activities. Purchase a blinkie button to have access to deals and discounts all over town!
Find more information, the 2017 parade route and more at the Chamber's event web page.