ATLANTA — More than 50,000 braved a rainy morning to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day during one of the country’s oldest parades of its kind.
The rainy weather gave the parade a feel of the Emerald Isle, but any rain drops didn’t dampen spirits.
“St. Patrick’s Day is a time of year when we celebrate with our global family of Irish people and people of Irish descent all over the world,” Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny wrote in an op-ed published in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “And we know this constituency to be strong and vibrant in Georgia, where almost a million residents claim Irish or Scots-Irish ancestry.”
The family-friendly parade celebrates the city’s Irish culture and history. Started in 1858 by the Hibernian Benevolent Society, a Catholic and Protestant fraternal organization, the annual parade is one of the oldest parades of its kind in the U.S. and is also the longest running event in Atlanta history.
Kenny served as the parade’s grand marshal.