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Thousands Show Up For St. Patrick's Day Parade

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Thousands packed the streets of Downtown Sioux Falls this afternoon for the city's 34th Annual St. Patrick's Day Parade. Some came to celebrate their ancestry, others just for the well-known holiday.

Whether it was watching from a rooftop, sitting on a perch or standing on a window ledge, the Sioux Empire was doing whatever they could in downtown Sioux Falls. They were trying to get a glimpse of the floats and the music that made up the annual St. Patrick's Day Parade.

Stacy Pilgeram of Sioux Falls said, "I have never been to the parade before, this is my first time and I thought I would go check it out. We're a little cold but we are having fun."

Irish or not, Stacy Pilgeram says she simply wanted to take in the fun atmosphere. Just across the street is Frank Barnett of Sioux Falls. He came to the parade for a different reason.

Barnett said, "I'm Irish, I'm very Irish! My mother was Irish and my father was Irish. I'm all Irish!"

Not only did he dress the part, but so did his car. With his wife Sheryl by his side, he attends the parade every year. For Frank, even after the parade, the celebrating isn't over.

Barnett said, "Me bride and I will probably go home and celebrate a little more."

For others, it means something more, it means keeping up with tradition.

Susan Fisher of Lake Poinsett said, "We do the whole thing. We do soda bread in the morning and we do corn beef and cabbage. It's important to me. It's part of the heritage."

Susan Fisher has lived in South Dakota for 18 years. She made the two hour drive from Lake Poinsett to Sioux Falls just for St. Patrick's Day. She hasn't missed a parade yet.

Fisher said, "It's an easy way to have a good time and not have a care in the world, and everyone's friendly."

Setting aside one day, each year to celebrate ancestry and tradition, while having a little fun too.
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