'I love it': Crowds brave cold weather to celebrate during Raleigh's St. Patrick's Day parade

Anthony Wilson Image
Sunday, March 12, 2023
Crowds brave cold weather to see Raleigh's St. Patrick's Day parade
Big crowds enjoy Raleigh's annual St. Patrick's Day Parade and Festival on cold and sunny Saturday.

RALEIGH, N.C. (WTVD) -- Before the music and the moves of many feet down Fayetteville Street, people eager for a great seat staked out spots for the Raleigh St. Patrick's Day Parade and Festival. With some spots outside the Raleigh Eyewitness News Center where temperatures dipped down low.

"I was not ready. I wish I'd brought a blanket," Pauline Reynolds said. "I'm from Canada so I should know better."

And despite the bundled up early arrivals, parade goers like Chuck Hansen said it's fair.

"Got a jacket on," he said. "The breeze, so strong that for people like me and others who remember these conditions, it felt like Chicago, the windy city. The difference? We don't dye any rivers green around here."

But a lot of people wear green, including a young man whose first name is the same as the saint's.

"I love it, because we're Irish and we come here almost every year," Patrick Katsirubas said.

This parade is the first in the city since an out of control truck hit and killed 11-year-old Hailey Brooks as she performed in the Raleigh Christmas parade.

The city established safety guidelines that include age limits for participating drivers.

While that's on the minds of many, some people appeared eager to get off the streets.

Ricky Murphy has spent 32 years on the job, often in the cold weather, and says you get used to it.

"All you gotta do is keep moving around, walking around, and you don't feel it," He said.

He may be right, after seeing participants like ABC11's Chief Meteorologist Don Schwenneker, who did not appear to be affected by the big chill.