CHESTER TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WOOD) — The “world’s shortest St. Patrick’s Day parade” went off without a hitch Friday, with hundreds walking the quarter-mile route that ended at the Conklin Bar.
This is the 35th year for the Conklin parade, which included bands, dancers and a grand marshal who gave out candy. The parade is always “planned” to go two blocks but “gives up” outside the bar as marchers opt to go in for a drink.
“The story goes that the (previous bar) owner walked down Main Street with an Irish flag and that’s how the parade started,” Conklin Bar owner Melinda Dertien said.
Karlee Smoes and her family moved to Conklin last summer. She told News 8 she was excited to finally take part in the annual tradition.
“It’s very surprising,” Smoes said. “There are so many people here. We’ve never seen it this busy.”
The parade kicked off at 10:55 a.m. and ended only a few minutes later. The holiday celebration is the biggest moneymaker for the Conklin Bar each year.
“It’s the biggest day of the year for us,” Dertien said. “There’s no other day that can beat St. Patty’s Day for us here in Conklin.”