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Downtown Wichita Falls Goes Green for St. Patrick's Day Festival

Thousands of people have been celebrating the luck of the Irish in downtown Wichita Falls Saturday.
Thousands of people have been celebrating the luck of the Irish in downtown Wichita Falls Saturday.

Organizers say they spend months preparing for the festival, from booking headliner bands to making sure there are enough activities for kids.

Hundreds of hours and many volunteers go into making the day a success.

Music can be heard from blocks away at Wichita Falls' St. Patrick's Day Street Festival, and it's the excitement that surrounds an outdoor concert that gave organizers the idea to start the festival almost a decade ago.

“We love bringing music to Wichita Falls and we wanted to take it out in the street and try something a little bit different, I’ve seen it done in other cities and I felt like Wichita Falls needed a street festival, especially in downtown,” says Event Director Danny Ahern.

And as the event has grown, so has the quality of the bands, but to score groups like the Los Lonely Boys in 2012 and Blue October this year, it takes a lot of work

“A lot of negotiation and going back and forth because we are a non profit so our operation budget isn't as large as maybe a major event center so we have to convenience them that this is an organization they should support,” says Assistant Director of Downtown Wichita Falls Development, Erin Marvin.

It's work organizers say is well worth it, as last year's event brought in over a million dollars in revenue for the city

“That's people traveling in from Lawton, from Graham, bringing those outside dollars in and keeping it in the city,” says Marvin.

Bringing families to Wichita Falls is important to organizers, who say they work extra hard to make the day great for all ages.

“When a lot of people think of St. Patrick's they think of frat parties and college kids going crazy we really work hard to make this a family friendly event, we bring out kids activities ,we have a separate kids section, kids 12 and under are free,” says Marvin.

Giving everyone a chance to enjoy a little luck of the Irish.

Last year's festival brought in around 5,000 people and in 2012, When the Los Lonely Boys were the headliners, there were 7,000 attendees.

Organizers hope when they tally up this years tickets sales, they end up with same about the same numbers.


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