South Side Irish Parade perfect for Chicago families

Formerly rowdy St. Patrick's Day parade has been reinvented


By Elizabeth Diffin

Senior Editor
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For years, the South Side Irish Parade had a rough reputation-and one that was pretty hard to shake. But after the parade was discontinued in 2010 (mainly due to drunk and disorderly conduct), it was reinvented two years ago as a family-friendly spot to get your Irish on.

The parade now has a zero-tolerance policy for alcohol along the route, which gives more time to focus on the real fun of the event: more than 90 participants showing off their various skills. Keep an eye out for be-kilted bagpipers, delightful dancers and at least a couple of lucky leprechauns. Plus, The Irish American Alliance brings along a pack of Irish Wolfhounds, and the South Side Irish Parade Queen holds court along the parade route.

Come early and take part in a fun run called The Emerald Isle Mile to get yourself revved up for the event. The one-mile distance makes it accessible to all ages and is a nice treat after being cooped up all winter.

Oh yeah, and one last thing: Wear green. We can't be held responsible for any pinch-based injuries you might sustain.

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