Catch Philly’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade the Easy Way—On a Charter Bus
The Philadelphia St. Patrick’s Day Parade, a city tradition since 1771, is scheduled for Sunday, March 12, 2017 at noon. This year’s parade theme is “St. Patrick, Protect and Guide Our Police Officers.” Among the top ten St. Patrick’s day parades in the United States, this year’s parade will be led by Donegal native Barney Boyce, an immensely popular figure in Philadelphia’s thriving Irish community. Barney and his wife, Carmel (a native of Trentagh near Letterkenny) have long been active in promoting Irish culture and were inducted into the Delaware Valley Irish Hall of Fame in 2005.
There will also be a commemorative parade mass at St. Patrick’s Church on 20th and Locust at 9 a.m. Before mass begins, the Procession of the Grand Marshal and Board Members will be led by the Emerald Society Pipe Band and the national anthems of both Ireland and the United States will be sung.
You can expect thousands and thousands of parade-goers, and parking promises to be an ordeal. There’s a better way to enjoy the revelry—travel to and from the parade in the comfort and luxury of a charter bus from BusRental.com.
The Philadelphia St. Patrick’s Day Parade—Steeped in History!!
They were celebrating Ireland’s patron saint in Philadelphia before the Declaration of Independence was signed. In fact, President George Washington, an honorary member of the Friendly Sons of St. Patrick, actively sought out Irish-American patriots to serve in the Colonial Army during its struggles with England.
Since 1952, the parade has been organized and hosted by the St. Patrick’s Day Observation Association, a non-profit entity established to preserve Irish heritage and culture in the city of brotherly love. Each year, more than 20,000 participants and 200 groups march in the parade, and thousands of spectators line the parade route. The parade is annually scheduled for the Sunday before March 17.
The Parade Route
The marchers convene at the corner of 16th and John F. Kennedy Boulevard. From there, the marchers will head down the Ben Franklin Parkway in the direction of the Philadelphia Art Museum, where the parade officially ends around 3 pm. Many streets in Center City will be closed for the parade.
Preparing for the Parade
The most important advice—plan to get there early if you want a good view of the parade. Mass starts at 9 am, but there will festivities before that, and most who come for the early festivities will stay until the parade is over (and probably for a while after that!!).
Be prepared for any kind of weather—the parade goes on, rain or shine. It’s March in Philadelphia, so there could be snow on the ground or it could be balmy. Check weather stations or apps before you go. Be sure to wear comfortable shoes…you’ll probably be on your feet for most of the parade. You’ll find plenty of food vendors selling everything from bangers and mash to Irish stew, as well as souvenirs. Most important—don’t forget to wear your green, although you’ll be able to purchase just about anything you can imagine in emerald green!
If you were hoping to be in the parade…sorry, it’s too late. The parade was full as of December, 2016. You’ll find a wide array of marchers, including Irish bands, fraternal organizations, schools, floats, dance groups and churches. Organizers hand out more than 15 annual awards, including best adult and children’s dance groups, Irish heritage awards, honors for best Irish bands and awards for fraternal organizations.
A Few Things You Can’t Do
It’s a family event, so organizers work hard to ensure the safety of people of all ages. Accordingly, there’s no consumption of alcoholic beverages allowed as part of the parade—though many local Irish pubs will be open. In addition, parade officials ask that you refrain from throwing candy during the parade.
Erin Go Bragh! Enjoy the St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Philadelphia
You don’t want to miss Philly’s fabulous St. Patrick’s Day parade, but you don’t want to fight the traffic, struggle with parking or have be a designated driver. With a charter bus from BusRental.com, you can get celebrate St. Patty’s day with family and friends while we do the driving. Here are some of the real benefits of bus travel:
- Charter buses have limited access, so you won’t have any uninvited guests and your personal items will always be secure. In addition, our drivers undergo rigorous behind-the-wheel training, so they’re ready to handle any contingency.
- No worries about delays or cancellations with a charter bus. Our drivers will get you where you want to go when you want to be there.
- You can design the trip that best fits your group and your needs, instead of having to choose from a limited number of prepackages option.
- Bus travel is the most affordable way to go, so you’ll have extra cash for souvenirs or great Irish food.
Book Your Charter Bus for St. Patrick’s Day Now
It’s a simple process to book your charter bus today. You can make your reservation online, the fast and easy way, or call 1-888-502-3458 to reserve your vehicle.