Greater Hartford St. Patrick’s Day Parade


Provided by Izabella and Scott McKenna

Local Irish Americans showing their pride throughout the years. Getting together to watch and ride in the parade.

Izabella McKenna, Multimedia Manager

The 51st annual Greater Hartford St. Patrick’s Day Parade took place on Saturday, March 11th. The parade started at 11am at the State Capital and it ended at 3pm near the Sailors and Soldiers Memorial Arch. The parade was sponsored and organized by the Central Connecticut Celtic Cultural Committee

Kathleen Baldick from the C.C.C.C.C. said to a Fox 61 reporter, “It’s looking to be a very full house this year in the city of Hartford. After the parade ends we start all over again. So all year long we do our fundraising and every year we are 100% volunteers. The fundraising is as needed, so every year we fundraise what we need to put on the parade for the next year, and we are fortunate to get sponsorships and grants and things like that as well. We do fundraising and we have a raffle that is actually on our website, on social media, you’ll see it.”

The C.C.C.C.C is aiming to celebrate the “cultural and historical contributions of Irish and Irish-American individuals and groups in Central Connecticut,” according to the group’s webpage. 

“The day of putting on the parade just takes so much to get everybody lined up appropriately. It is a lot of work but it is worth it. It’s all about keeping our Irish heritage and culture alive and well in the Greater Hartford community. There have been so many immigrants over the last 300 years and the majority of us are still first or second generation. It’s a festival and this thing is, it’s not just Irish. So many people have come to Hartford. It’s just a huge celebration,” Baldick said. 

Police lined the streets first to kick the whole parade off, and behind them there were the bagpipe performers. As they were setting up, a horse and a carriage pulled up. Thousands of people flooded the streets to see the parade go off into full bloom. TV screens filled with a sea of green. The parade started down Capitol Ave then took a left turn down Main St. and a left on Asylum St., which is historically known for having the biggest and most lively crowds. Then, it continued with a sharp left onto Ford St., to finish off at the Arch.

“As an Irish American, St. Patrick’s Day is a celebration of our heritage,” said parade goer, and former participant in the Hartford Leprechauns go-kart racers, Scott McKenna. 

In a post on the Hartford Leprechauns Facebook page, the group announced back in 2019 that they were going to retire: “I am very close to announcing our retirement. The idea, though grand, never caught on. I hope some young people were able to see what we were going for. To ride in the parade and high five with an entire block of people is beyond words. If anything, I hope I have inspired some youngsters to take up the mantle. Riding in the parade is a rush like you have never had,” posted leader of the Hartford Leprechauns, Scott McKenna. 

The parade is a celebration that brings together an entire community and is there to celebrate the Irish Americans that live in Connecticut. People like Scott McKenna and every other parade goer show their support for the community and Irish Americans because the parade is where everyone is Irish.