As the sun set on Crown Point Friday evening, the city launched its annual St. Patrick’s Day nighttime parade.
Heralded by the sound of bagpipes, local businesses, nonprofits, and other community organizations donned green outfits, green light strings, and lucky clovers as they marched through the Crown Point’s downtown square while spectators regaled them with cheers.
“When we started this tradition, way back when, we said let’s be the first and only to have a nighttime parade,” said Pete Land, Crown Point mayor. “Everything we do is for not only our citizens of Crown Point but also the visitors that come to our events. Year after year, the crowd is always pumped up and excited to see it.”
Crown Point’s local business got in on the festivities ahead of time. The many shops and restaurants of the square decorated their windows for the holiday, and a competition was held to determine the favorite. The Hub Vintage Boutique & Market earned top honors, but the 3 highest vote-getters were all recognized, including Square Roots and the new Culinary Misfits – two restaurants that share ownership.
“I enjoy this, it’s great that everyone finally gets to come together and see all the cool, fun things in the parade and visit all the great places on the square,” said Maya Topin, HR & Training Specialist for the eateries. “I feel like the other neighboring towns should definitely do something like this, but also an opportunity for people from those towns to come visit. It creates a big community and I like that a lot.”
The parade featured over 50 different entrants, each bringing their own spin to St. Patrick’s festivities. Some brought massive floats, covered in lights and inflatables, while others marched with elaborate costumes and bowls of candy to throw to the crowd. As is tradition, Mi Ranchito’s dancing horses provided the grand finale.
Aside from the parade, Crown Point organized an array of food trucks and vendors to dot the square, with many offering St. Patrick’s Day specials.
“This is kind of our kick-off for the year of activities,” Land said. “Not only do we have the square as the gem of our city, but the business district surrounding downtown is phenomenal. We’ve got great community partners. We try to do a wide variety of events because everybody likes something different and we’re working hard to provide a big array of entertainment.”
To keep up with Crown Point’s packed calendar of events, visit crownpoint.in.gov or follow the city at www.facebook.com/CityofCrownPointIN/.