The Big St. Pat’s Parade is this Weekend!

It's almost here! The Crosslake St. Patrick's Day Parade and festivities are this Saturday. The parade, one of the largest in Minnesota (and almost definitely the largest outside the Twin Cities) will bring more than 10,000 people to the town of Crosslake and endless fun to parade goers. The parade begins at 2 p.m. on Saturday, March 17. Find the parade route map and event schedule here.

And while the parade is the main event, there is even more fun surrounding the parade beginning on Thursday morning, March 15 and continuing through the weekend. Thursday morning is when the first clue will be released for the Pot O Gold Treasure Hunt. Follow the clues around town and find the hidden Pot O Gold- which will win you a huge prize package valued at more than $1,000, thanks to Crosslake businesses! Three clues will be released, one daily until parade day. Find the clues on the Crosslake Chamber of Commerce event website. They'll be posted at 9 a.m. each morning.

The fun continues Friday night with live music at Andy's and Moonlite Bay.

On Saturday you can start your parade day off right with a 5k run. The Clover Dash 5k starts and finishes at Crosslake Town Square. All racers over 21 years old will receive a free green beer from Rafferty's. Registration is from 7:45-9 a.m. at Whitefish Lodge and Suites, and the race begins at 9:30.

If running's not your thing, there's a pancake breakfast Saturday morning benefiting the Crosslake Fire Department, from 8-11:30 a.m. at Crosslake Lutheran Church. Weather permitting, there will be tethered hot air balloon rides thanks to ReMax at the Army Corps of Engineers Cross Lake Recreation Area (the dam) from 8-11 a.m. Riders must be at least 10 years old.

Whitefish Lodge and Suites will host a Wake Up Bar, Arts and Crafts Vendors' Fair and Outdoor Beer and Food Garden from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. The parade starts nearby in Crosslake Town Square.

There's much, much more fun to be had. Crosslake Town Square, where the parade begins, will have pre-parade entertainment and shopping. Crosslake Community School will host family fun with games, face painting, a book walk and more at the school (on County Rd. 66, south of city hall) from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.

Purchase a blinkie button and get discounts all over town, from bars and restaurants to retailers and gas stations! You can also purchase a $5 raffle ticket and get your blinkie button free! Buttons and raffle tickets are available at companies around town. The day will include a huge lineup of entertainment both before and after the parade. Check the chamber's event website or download the Crosslake App to see all events and blinkie button discounts.

Most of all, have fun and be safe this weekend!

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