Weekend preview: St. Patrick's Day in Fort Clydesdale and beyond

When Jack Seiler was sworn in for his first term as mayor of Fort Lauderdale nine years ago, the ceremony took place on March 17, St. Patrick’s Day.

As Seiler told the Sun-Sentinel’s Anthony Man back then, “For an Irish Catholic kid, it ain't a bad day to take office.”

One of the first ideas Seiler had for energizing the downtown community was to help create a nonprofit charged with reviving the city’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade, which had been on hiatus for nearly two decades. So you know who to thank if you happen to step in a pile of Clydesdale in downtown Fort Lauderdale this weekend.

On Saturday, the Fort Lauderdale St. Patrick’s Day Parade and Festival returns with Seiler as its grand marshal, a victory lap of sorts for the three-term mayor, leaving office due to term limits.

As it has since its 2010 reintroduction, the daylong party is one of the events that kicks off what has become St. Patrick’s Week in South Florida, as cities push up their celebrations to score entertainment that will be busy in New York and Boston next weekend.

Sponsored by the Kelley/Uustal law firm, Fort Lauderdale festivities begin with the 7:30 a.m., four-mile Shamrock Run at Huizenga Plaza, followed by the Lucky Little Leprechaun Dash for kids. The parade along Las Olas Boulevard begins at noon, and will include more than 100 decorative floats, bagpipers, marching bands and the return of the Budweiser Clydesdales.

The post-parade, family-friendly festival at Huizenga Plaza runs until 7 p.m. Entertainment highlights include Celtic Bridge at 4 p.m. and the tribute band U2 by UV at 6 p.m.

If you are looking for an up-close moment with the Clydesdales, they are on view on view at the FLPD stables in Fort Lauderdale’s Holiday Park (U.S. 1 and Sunrise), with stable tours, a petting zoo and pony rides.

Visit StPatsFTL.com.

Next weekend, on St. Patrick’s Day proper, the Las Olas landmark Riverside Hotel will throw its St. Patrick’s Day Bash noon-10 p.m. Visit Facebook.com/RiversideHotelFL.

Pompano Beach: On Saturday at 4 p.m., 26 Degree Brewing Co. in Pompano Beach will host the always entertaining head-shaving fundraiser for the St. Baldrick's Foundation, a charity that provides research grants for childhood cancer. Next Saturday, March 17, the brewery and co-host Flanigan’s will offer the irreverent St. Paddy's Day $H!T SHOW 2018, a daylong tented affair, beginning at noon, that includes food trucks, special beers and, of course, bagpipes. Visit Facebook.com/26Brewing.

Hollywood: South Florida radio icon Footy returns to emcee the St. Patrick's Day Parade & Festival in downtown Hollywood noon-6 p.m. Sunday, March 11. The 1 p.m. processional along Hollywood Boulevard will include the Budweiser Clydesdales, the New York Police Department Emerald Society Pipe and Drum Corps and a string of local marching bands. Live music on the stage at 19th Avenue and Hollywood Boulevard will come from Joe Dougherty, Celtic Bridge and U2 by UV. The parade marshal is longtime Hollywood resident Jimmy Lawless, a native of Lismore, County Waterford, Ireland, who immigrated to the U.S. in 1949. Visit StPatricksParade.com.

Davie: Take the kids to the St. Patrick’s Day Farm Festival at Marando Farms & Ranch in Davie at 11 a.m. Sunday, when you’ll find DJ Supa Mario, vendors, cornhole, a bounce house, pony rides, petting zoo and green juices from Zen Bar. Visit Facebook.com/MarandoRanch.

Delray Beach: It’s been 50 years since, lore has it, the first Delray Beach St. Patrick’s Day Parade took place on Atlantic Avenue with a contingent of two: pub owner Maury Power and a green pig. The city will celebrate the anniversary with two days of events, March 16-17, in and around Old School Square, with the March 17 parade led by two pigs, in honor of Power. The festivities include a pre-party 5-10 p.m. March 16 in Old School Square Park, featuring Gaelic Brew from County Cork; a fun run at 11 a.m. March 17, followed by the parade at noon. Such is the popularity of this event that the route has been extended five blocks west of Swinton Avenue to West Fifth Avenue. Visit StPatrickMarch.com.

Miami: One of South Florida’s biggest and most, uh, lively St. Patrick’s Day events unravels across Miami’s Mary Brickell Village on March 17, a party hosted by Fado Irish Pub. Under a cocoon of tents, the bar-scene Bedouin will gather for beer, cocktails and dancing to the hottest bagpipe music. Kidding. They’ll have DJs. Many DJs. The 7 a.m.-to-midnight, 21-and-older party costs $25 beginning at noon. Visit Facebook.com/FadoMiami.

Miami: The Wharf Miami on the Miami River will host its inaugural St. Patrick's Day Riverside Festival beginning at noon March 17, with food from Garcia’s Seafood, King of Racks BBQ and Mojo Donuts, and music by popular Miami Heat music man DJ Irie. Because everyone’s Irie-ish on St. Patrick’s Day. Admission is free. Visit Facebook.com/WharfMiami.

West Palm Beach: The 24th annual St. Patrick’s Day Block Party returns to the 500 block of Clematis in downtown West Palm Beach on March 17, when O’Shea’s Irish Pub will be open at the crack of 9 a.m. Have a few beers and then, at 9:45 a.m., watch the telecast of Ireland vs. England rugby from London on the final day of the 2018 Six Nations Championship. The bounce house opening at 11 a.m. is, alas, for kids only. Gaelic Brew goes on at 1:30 p.m. Visit OSheasPub.com.

Boynton Beach: Some of your favorite beermakers — including Due South, NoBo, Devour, Copperpoint and NonProphet Brewing — are in Boynton Beach, which may be all you need to know. The fourth annual Blarney Bash is 4-9 p.m. Saturday, March 17, along East Ocean Avenue, with food and drink, live music, kids’ activities and separate costume contests for young ones and you. Entertainment will come from Rogue Theory, Steeltown Religion, Celtic Mayhem and the Aranmore Academy of Irish Dance. Visit CatchBoynton.com.

Boca Raton: The St. Patrick Day Block party at the Dubliner in Boca Raton’s Mizner Park gets going at 11 a.m. March 17, with entertainment ranging from cloggers and bagpipers to Delray Beach rockers Spider Cherry and the U2 homage band Someday Radio. Visit Facebook.com/DublinerBoca.

Coconut Creek: The Greater Fort Lauderdale Road Runners Club again will ask you to waste good beer-drinking time running around in circles, this time at Tradewinds Park in Coconut Creek for the 23rd annual St. Patrick's 10K at 7 a.m. March 17. Please tell me there will be beer at the end of the run. Entry is $15, $10 ages 19 and younger, free for 80 and older. Visit Facebook.com/GFLRRC.

Doral: You’ve outgrown the allure of green beer and the Irish Car Bomb (right?), but $3 Guinness? Now we’re talking. That’s among the deals for anyone wearing green at Biscayne Bay Brewing Co. in Doral on March 17. Visit BiscayneBayBrewing.com.

GREEN BEER

Green beer, as in environmentally minded, can be found at LauderAle beginning 3 p.m. Sunday, March 11, at a fundraiser for the Broward County Sea Turtle Conservation Program. Along with a turtle-themed beer, exhibits and a presentation by the Halmos College of Natural Sciences and Oceanography at Nova Southeastern University, they’ll raffle the opportunity to witness a live turtle release. For a $5 donation, you get a dollar off your beer. Visit Facebook.com/LauderAle, Facebook.com/BrowardCTurtles.

SPEAKING OF TURTLES

Up-and-coming West Palm Beach country singer-songwriter Ryan Montgomery, now of Nashville, will be back in South Florida on Saturday morning for the Change the Tide Fort Lauderdale Beach Sweep, leading a group in de-trashing the area where country stars will perform April 6-8 at the 2018 Tortuga Music Festival. Hosted by Rock the Ocean Foundation, the ocean-conservation nonprofit that sponsors the festival, the beach cleanup takes place 7-11 a.m. at the Hub (A1A and Las Olas Boulevard). “The beach has always been a place for me to surf, relax and hang out … and I am super excited for the opportunity to support Rock the Ocean Foundation and the Tortuga Music Festival in their efforts to conserve and improve South Florida’s beaches and oceans,” Montgomery said in a press statement. The Florida Atlantic University student plans to release a debut EP this spring. Visit RockTheOcean.com, TortugaMusicFestival.com and RyanMontgomeryMusic.net.

LIQUORDALE NO MORE?

Further evidence that Spring Break in Fort Liquordale isn’t what it used to be. The most popular event on the beach this weekend may be the 2018 City Bikes Las Olas Triathlon (LasOlasTri.com) on Sunday morning. And it’s sold out. Furthermore, as you may have noticed, the Cellars Wine and Spirits on Sunrise Boulevard is now Conte’s Bike Shop (ConteBikes.com). What is the world coming to?

bcrandell@sun-sentinel.com

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