Downtown Roanoke Inc. expands Saint Patrick's Day festivities of - WSLS 10 NBC in Roanoke/Lynchburg Va

Downtown Roanoke Inc. expands Saint Patrick's Day festivities for Roanoke City.

Ann Trinkle is working around the clock to get the shamrocks and green garland up at Fork in The City, as businesses gear up for Saint Patrick's Day weekend. As usual, thousands of people are expect to flood downtown Roanoke.

"We doing the window painting, a lot more decorations we are doing," says Trinkle.

For years Eventzone ran the Saint Patrick's Day parade and festival. Last year the city awarded the events contract to Downtown Roanoke Incorporated, and last month Eventzone said the company was moving to Botetourt County. Meaning DRI would pick up where Eventzone left off on events.

"Whenever an event changes there are challenges, but it think the community has really responded well," says Matt Klepieisz with Downtown Roanoke Inc.

Klepeisz says it has taken months to plan the weekend, adding new attractions and bands.     

"It is going to be bigger than it has been in the past, and I think DRI has been able to capitalize on the ground work that has been laid," says Klepieisz.

The parade and Celtic festival will stay in the same area.

So what's new? This year another stage at the Wells Fargo plaza will hold local bands, like Superhold. Market plaza will host a children's area, and Roanoke's main library will show movies.

Many including Trinkle believe the added attractions will bring more people to market area businesses, and make them see more green.

"Everybody down here says Saint Patrick's Day is so good for business, so to be right across the street we are just thrilled and excited about it," says Trinkle.

Keeping the tradition alive, while adding new things as its popularity continued to grow. 

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