For the 43rd year, Kansas City’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade will take over a portion of the city Tuesday, and this year’s edition will be headlined by a splashy name.
Author and Kansas City native Gillian Flynn, whose best-selling novel “Gone Girl” was adapted into an Oscar-nominated film last year, will serve as grand marshal of the parade.
“We’ve just received tremendous feedback from the community for having her come back to Kansas City and participate in this parade,” said Matt Kirby, senior co-chairman of the 2015 St. Patrick’s Day Parade Committee. “She grew up right there in the Westport area, grew up watching the parade, (and) we’re absolutely thrilled to have her.”
As it has since 2009, the parade will proceed south on Broadway, beginning at 11 a.m. at Linwood Boulevard and ending at 43rd Street about two hours later.
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Roughly 110 entries will highlight this year’s event. For the first time those in attendance will have an opportunity, for a small fee, to vote on their favorite float, with proceeds going to Harvesters.
Beginning at 9 a.m. Tuesday, Broadway will be closed in the 16-block area from 31st to 47th streets. Cars parked in that area, as well as at the parade staging area on Linwood from Main to Pennsylvania and on Broadway from 31st to Linwood, must be moved by 4 a.m. Tuesday.
And with temperatures expected to near the 60s Tuesday — and many local school districts on spring break this week — parade officials are expecting large crowds.
“After two years of cold and dreary weather, we’re forecast to have another nice day,” said Kirby, who along with junior co-chairwoman Amy Moses has helped plan the event. “Even on the cold and dreary days, we had a fantastic fan base. So with good weather forecast, we anticipate a very good crowd.”
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