All of the celebrity participants who had been scheduled for the First Ever 17th Annual World’s Shortest St. Patrick’s Day Parade and its accompanying festivities have signaled they will be present for the rescheduled parade to be held October 16 and 17 in downtown Hot Springs on world-famous 98-foot-long Bridge Street. The parade itself will be on October 17.
The original March 17 parade, famed internationally as one of the zaniest events anywhere, was affected by the COVID-19 virus pandemic.
“Cheech Marin, our celebrity grand marshal, Danny (Machete) Trejo, our official starter, Foghat and Blues Traveler have all signed up to participate in the First Ever Second 17th Annual World’s Shortest St. Patrick’s Day Parade,” said Steve Arrison, CEO of Visit Hot Springs and one of the world-famous parade’s founders.
Marin is one half of the legendary comedy duo Cheech and Chong, while Trejo is known worldwide as the mean-looking film character Machete and other menacing-looking roles.
“Cheech and Danny Trejo will lead the parade on October 17,” Arrison said, “and the band Foghat will perform a free public concert on the evening of October 16. Blues Traveler will perform a free public concert immediately after the parade.”
“We are pleased and grateful that these folks were understanding about our decision to postpone the scheduled March 16 and 17 events and have expressed their commitment to come to Hot Springs in October for the rescheduled parade,” Arrison said.
“While we will, of course, be guided by public-health guidelines as set forth by the Centers for Disease Control and Governor Asa Hutchinson, we fully intend for the October version of our huge little parade to be every bit as big, exciting, crazy and fun as the first 16 parades were.
“It will be the party of the year, maybe of the decade.”
“Parade fans are so excited about the timing of the event that the hashtag ‘#shamrocktober’ has been created on social media,” said Bill Solleder, marketing director for Visit Hot Springs.
“The official name of our big little October parade is now one word longer, as we are going to hold the second version of the 17th annual parade,” Solleder said. “We did actually have a parade on March 17, but it wasn’t the gigantic celebration we had planned. Actually, it was just me and fellow parade organizer, Alexis Hampo, who marched 98 feet on Bridge Street to maintain the tradition of holding our little parade on St. Patrick’s Day.”
The parade, founded in 2003, has gained international fame for attracting more than 30,000 fun-loving spectators to downtown Hot Springs to watch an array of celebrities, marchers, floats, strutters, Irish Elvis impersonators, dancers, Irish wolfhounds, waddlers and leprechauns march down 98-foot-long Bridge Street, the World’s Shortest Street in Everyday Use, according to Ripley’s Believe It or Not.