60 Arrested at South Side Irish Parade

Event draws 340,000 under sunny skies

Monday, Mar 16, 2009  |  Updated 11:59 AM CDT
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Thousands Line Saturday Parade Route

Scott Barbour/Getty Images

This St. Patrick's Day reveler takes celebration seriously.

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"This is the best parade ever," said Rich Duba, a Palos Park resident said the South Side Irish St. Patrick's Day Parade. "We beat the (downtown) city parade every time."

Duba's pride in the South Side Irish Parade was shared by thousands on Sunday, with an estimated 340,000 spectators lining the parade route.  

Many of those spectators were children, there with their families as they've been for several years,  The parade started as a family event, the Chicago Sun-Times reported, and organizers want to keep it that way.

But, with Sunday's temperatures flirting with 60, the 31st annual parade crowd swelled to one of its largest turnouts ever, said organizer Mary Beth Sheehan. There were 15,000 marchers and 120 floats and entries.

Signs warned against public drinking. But a Morgan Park District tactical officer estimated there were 60 arrests for public drinking and fighting, the Sun-Times reported.

Police News Affairs could not confirm the figure.

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