Get ready to have a Shamrockin’ good time in downtown Roanoke

You can enjoy the St. Patrick’s Day Parade, Shamrock Festival, Celtic Fest on the Hill and more

ROANOKE, Va. – It is going to be a busy weekend in downtown Roanoke for the return of the St. Patrick’s Day Parade and Shamrock Festival. So, put on your green and enjoy the fun.

The parade begins at 11 a.m. There will be several Celtic bands, including Appalachian Highlanders’ Pipes and Drums and the Jamestown Pipes and Drums. A number of community organizations are putting together floats. They will hand out candy, beads and other St. Patrick’s Day Gear.

The parade travels down Jefferson Street, to Campbell Avenue, ending on Williamson Road.

Jaime Clark with downtown Roanoke says if you plan on attending the parade, it is important to make a plan and head out early.

Clark says, “Maybe park a little farther away than you normally would just because there will be crowds. Get parked early and come downtown and find your spot. Put on your green and have a good time.”

There are a number of road closures to keep in mind starting at 10 a.m. Parts of Franklin Road, 1st Street Southwest, and Williamson Road will be closed.

The Shamrock Festival runs from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and is completely free. There is going to be live music, adult beverages, food and more.

Corned Beef & Co. is hosting its Celtic Celebrations as well. They will have Irish food specials, live Celtic music and special drinks.

Clark says this weekend means so much to local businesses and is the unofficial kick-off of the spring season.

“It is definitely a huge weekend for downtown in general and for our businesses. A huge influx of crowds. It is kind of a signal for us to that winter is mostly passed and a lot of people are returning to downtown that maybe stayed away during the colder winter months,” says Clark.

Roanoke Catholic School is hosting its 2nd annual Celtic Fest on the Hill following the parade. This is a family-friendly event with Irish bands, food trucks, an obstacle course, bouncy house and more. Because of the colder temperatures on Saturday, the festival is being held inside the gymnasium.

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