Many people don't realize that the Irish have played a central role in Kansas City history from the beginning. Our St. Patty's Day parade is the third largest behind New York and Boston. After thirty years of holding the parade downtown, they moved it to Midtown Kansas City on Broadway within just a few blocks of my house. I walked over to 34th Terrace and Broadway, near the start of the parade, and snapped these shots.
First, you must have bagpipes.
Then you must have the mayor. So here is Mark Funkhouser.
Irish politics was also on display.
You also need a little craziness.
Of course, you can't forget this guy.
BTW, the church in the background above is Redemptorist, where most of my neighbors attend. The congregation now has a predominately Mexican-American feel but in the early days this neighborhood (and where I live a few blocks west) was largely Irish and I'm told Redemptorist was largely Irish as well.
Below is the Marine color guard.
These dancers stopped to show their moves every block or so.
You can't have a K. C. parade without cowboys.
I loved the dog hitching a ride in this one.
Every K. C. parade must have the Marching Cobras.
Toward the end of the parade was the International House of Prayer with a contingent of people stretching more than a city block, dancing and singing to music that sounded like Delirious. They would yell out "Happy St. Patrick's Day" and "Jesus loves you."
Here is evidence the Kronicler was actually there.
As I walked back home I passed Browne's Irish Deli about four blocks from my house. To say they were doing a brisk business would be an understatement.
It was sunny, temp was around 70, and there was just a light breeze. God was smiling on the Irish in K. C. today.