35th annual St. Patrick's Day events in Sioux Falls - KSFY News - Sioux Falls, SD News, Weather, Sports

35th annual St. Patrick's Day events in Sioux Falls

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Sioux Falls officially painted the town green, Saturday.

The 35th annual St. Patrick's Day festivities got underway, Saturday morning, in downtown Sioux Falls. A 5 mile run through Falls Park kicked off just after 9:00 a.m. with another 5K and 1 mile fun run.

More than 1,000 runners and walkers were decked out in green to show off their Irish heritage. Many of them with multiple layers to brave the cold temperatures and wind.

"This is my first time. I'm actually from Omaha. Heard about it for awhile... Finally had a chance to make it up here. I'm doing the Irishman so all three. Definitely something I haven't ever done before," runner Logan Watley said.

The annual painting of the shamrock followed the races. Groups painted to the sounds of Irish bagpipes along Phillips Avenue between 9th and 10th Streets.

KSFY News caught up with Sylvia Henkin who has not one ounce of Irish blood in her. However, the events of downtown Sioux Falls celebrating St. Patrick's Day all started thanks to her 35 years ago.

"It's a wonderful tradition and a great time for everyone to be Irish and have a lot of fun," Sylvia Henkin said. "Everyone is Irish on a day like this, and on March 17th. There are a lot of wanna-be's and this is their day they can really be if they want to."

The annual parade kicked off at 2:00 p.m. near Main and 6th Street. Dozens of floats were decked out in Irish garb to fill the streets of downtown with more than 1,000 onlookers who braved the cold to be part of the festive tradition. Irish or not, people say it is an event bringing the Sioux Falls, and surrounding communities, together, every year.

"You never know what to expect in South Dakota. The weather can chance so fast. Keeping the spirits up and enjoying the parade," parade-goer Jill Berg said.


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