40th annual St. Patrick’s Day parade canceled

Pride of the Irish band will not be able to perform

Members+of+the+marching+band+take+part+in+the+St.+Patrick%27s+Day+parade+two+years+ago+in+Downtown+Indianapolis+

Cathedran file photo

Members of the marching band take part in the St. Patrick’s Day parade two years ago in Downtown Indianapolis

Tory Basile, Reporter

For the Pride of the Irish marching band, the annual St. Patrick’s Day parade in Downtown Indianapolis has been a beloved and enduring tradition. However, due to circumstances related to Covid-19, this year’s parade has been canceled, according to Band Director Mrs. Kathy McCullough.

As stated in a press release by the Athletic Club Foundation, which organizes the Indy St. Patrick’s Day Parade, “The Foundation will still host the greening of the canal on Friday, March 17 for media and government officials to remind all Hoosiers that there is light at the end of the rainbow. This is the second year in a row that the Foundation has had to cancel the parade to protect the health and safety of participants and spectators.”

McCullough, who has been a member of the faculty since 1997, said that the band has performed at the parade during every year of her tenure, excluding the years 2000, 2008, and 2016 – years during which the band travelled to perform in Dublin, Ireland’s St. Patrick’s Day parade. In 2020, the band was unable to perform because of the then-recent Covid outbreak.

McCullough shared that while the band will not replace the event with anything that she deemed “St. Patrick’s Day-ish,” they are instead “just preparing for a hopeful Spring Gala in May, if not in person, then (as) a virtual concert.” McCullough said in this case, the concert would be a pre-recorded video. 

Though McCullough described the band’s experience this year as being “rough” due to the confinements posed on their performances and practices by Covid, she noted that they were lucky to be able to play for three football games in the fall, and that they have performed virtually for the Indiana State School Music Association Solo and Ensemble contests.

McCullough said that ultimately, “We are working with what we have and trying to make the best of every day.”