NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) — For the third straight year, the St. Patrick’s Day parade will not march down the streets of Norfolk. COVID-19 forced organizers to call it off the past two years.
This year, however, the weather rained on the parade.
“It’s very very disappointing, heartbreaking when you can’t pull it off at the very end,” said a member of the parade’s planning committee.
Norfolk’s Vice Mayor Martin Thomas announced the news Thursday afternoon on Facebook.
On Saturday, bleacher-style benches and traces of police detours could still be seen lining the streets where the would-be parade was set to march down.
Cold gusts of wind and rain covered most of the area during the time the parade was planned for. Some areas even saw small snowfall, but nothing stuck to the ground.
A party that was scheduled to be a part of the parade was still held. Businesses owners and locals gathered to still host the tradition.
“We depend on this as a major fundraiser for our club here,” said Powell referencing the venue, the Columbian Club of Norfolk. “So those two years that we didn’t have it, we had to struggle through.”
For 55 years, people have marked their calendars for the massive parade. Some people were upset about the cancelation, but most were staying positive.
“I love this. It’s the St Patty’s Day Parade that has been canceled for three years, but you know what this place makes it better,” said one party-goer.
The cancellation on top of pandemic slowdowns means nearby businesses likely won’t get as big of a bump in sales this weekend.
Business owners like Torrie from Torrie’s Boot Camp are still taking advantage of the weekend to network and get out into the community.
“Well it stinks you know,” said the business owner. “Like I said Mother Nature is going through something right now. So it’s ok, but nothing holds us back.”