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St. Patrick's Day parade.

The 35th annual Lawrence St. Patrick’s Day Parade took place on Thursday, marking the return of the local tradition after two years of COVID-19-related cancellations.

The annual parade benefits charities that directly support those under 18,

A group this year that includes the Lawrence Public Library Friends Foundation, the Watkins Museum of History, and the Jefferson’s Foundation.

Kay Traver, an organizer and spokesperson for the parade said that the organizers of the event were ready to get back into the routine of the parade.

“We just want to get back into our old roles, I think,” Traver said. “But yes, everybody is excited to get back [and] create some normalcy again.

That is, you know, the overrun comment for any darn thing going on in the past couple of years.” 

Traver said that about 70 groups were signed up to create floats and walk in the parade this year, down from pre-pandemic numbers.

Those groups fell into three categories: families, non-profits, and businesses.

Before the parade, the Irish Mile, an annual race down the parade route run by Ad Astra Running, had several runners dressed up in various Irish attire.

Several members of college running teams, including members from KU’s Running Club, ran in the race.

The parade is one of several events that the organization puts on every year, and is not the last. Irish Road Bowling,

An event in which teams of four throw a metal ball down a mile-long route in as few throws as possible, is set to take place on March 20. More details about the parade and that event can be found

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