Dallas St. Patrick's Parade Plans For 40th Anniversary

Alan Scaia
March 14, 2019 - 12:10 pm
Dallas St. Patrick's Day Parade

Credit: J.Burkett Photo

DALLAS (1080 KRLD) - Organizers are planning for more than 125,000 people to line Greenville Avenue for this year's St. Patrick's parade in Dallas. The parade is scheduled for this Saturday.

"It's the one time this city encourages you to go out and have really big, silly fun," says Tom Stephenson, the founder of the parade in 1979.

Stephenson says the parade has grown from a group of people who hit the street 40 years ago before permits were required.

"We were very unprofessional. We didn't know what we were doing," he says. "The major difference now, I think, and the reason this is such a great event, is the diversity of the people who show up for this thing."

Stephenson says the parade and holiday bring everyone together.

"It's not like Texas-OU weekend where you've got a very partisan relationship, where you've got red on this side and burnt orange on this side. What you have here is everybody together in green," he says.

Mayor Mike Rawlings will serve as grand marshal. Rawlings will leave office this year at the end of his second term.

"We've gone through some tough times together, and we get together, and we're closer because of those tough times," he says. "But we always have to remember we come together over fun times as well."

The parade runs down Greenville starting at 11 am this Saturday at Blackwell. The parade will head south on Greenville to SMU Boulevard.

"I want to say to everybody, drink a little Irish whiskey for me," Rawlings says.

This year, a concert is also planned at Matilda Bridge, near Mockingbird. The concert will include four cover bands playing songs from the last 40 years. The concert runs from 12-7.

Dallas Area Rapid Transit will start trains early Saturday. DART says the St. Patrick's parade is its second busiest of the year, after Texas-OU weekend.

Orange and Red Line trains will start running at 6 a.m. Saturday from Plano. A day pass costs $6.

"DART's parking lots are free, so you'll save money and maybe buy some of that whiskey the mayor's talking about," says DART's Mark Ball.