By Kari Pugh | Editor
After a two-year hiatus thanks to COVID-19, the ever-popular Kelly’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade returns this month to celebrate its 31st year.
It started three decades ago as a community event to chase away the winter doldrums and prepare for the summer season, but soon became a draw for thousands.
Today, the event is North Carolina’s largest St. Patty’s parade, featuring more than 100 entrants and as many as 8,000 spectators.
Mike Kelly, owner of the now-closed Kelly’s Outer Banks Restaurant and Tavern, started the parade and kept the tradition going after Kelly’s closed.
This year’s parade kicks off at 1 p.m., Sunday, March 20 at Bladen Street and the Beach Road at milepost 11.5 in Nags Head and will follow a one-mile route north to Driftwood Street.
The Coastal Humane Society and The Outer Banks Hospital will serve as grand marshals as both celebrate their 20-year anniversaries this year.
A panel of judges will be on hand to award entrants in the following categories: best overall, best float, best unit and best band/music group. Prizes will be awarded following the parade.
Outer Banks Wedding Weekend returns
The Outer Banks Wedding Association’s Wedding Weekend & Expo returns this weekend for its 25th year of helping couples tie the knot.
The expo starts runs Saturday, March 5, starting at noon through Sunday at 2 p.m., with a variety of events including a self-guided tour of five of the area’s most sought-after venues and the chance to meet with local wedding professionals wedding-reception-styled settings complete with food and drink samples.
General admission tickets are $20 and include admission to all venues and a keepsake bag full of planning information. VIP tickets are $40 and include admission to all venues, a canvas tote full of swag and special promotions from OBWA and its sponsors, and a VIP lanyard to collect more prizes and giveaways.
For more information and to purchase tickets visitobxwa.com/expo.