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Archive for Monday, March 12, 2007

Parade o’ green crowns a queen

March 12, 2007

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Margaret Perkins-McGuinness, left, smiles as she is named St. Patrick's Day Parade queen, while fellow contestant Kassie Baxtor applauds. Perkins-McGuinness was announced as this year's queen on Sunday at the Flamingo Club.

Margaret Perkins-McGuinness, left, smiles as she is named St. Patrick's Day Parade queen, while fellow contestant Kassie Baxtor applauds. Perkins-McGuinness was announced as this year's queen on Sunday at the Flamingo Club.

Weekend filled with St. Patrick's Day festivities

The St. Patrick's Day crown was passed down tonight after racers laced up their sneakers for the 18th annual Shamrock Shuffle yesterday. Enlarge video

A Lawrence woman with a truly Irish-sounding name will be this year's St. Patrick's Day Parade queen.

Margaret Perkins-McGuinness, who will serve as queen of this year's parade, beat out three other women vying for the title. Perkins-McGuinness said she decided to compete for the title after working on Kids Voting with a number of the St. Patrick's Day Parade committee members.

Community service is a major part of the criteria for who is selected, and Perkins-McGuinness had so much community service that event organizers warned the audience to be prepared for quite a long list.

"I participated in a lot of activities and I had a wonderful time," she said. "The committee members are wonderful people and they have a lot of fun doing this."

Gene Shaughnessy, the parade co-chairman who led the coronation ceremony at the Flamingo Club in North Lawrence, said picking the winner from among the four finalists was one of the hardest things the committee had to do.

"That's the most difficult meeting we have, is to vote for the queen," he said. "They're all four queens in my book."

Shaughnessy said the parade committee had come up a little short of its fundraising goal this year, only raising about $35,000 for community charities. Last year, organizers raised about $50,000.

"It kind of fluctuates from year to year. This year, I think we're down a little bit," he said.

Perkins-McGuinness said she's expecting a big turnout for the Saturday event. She'll be riding in a convertible, and she's betting it's a Ford, as this year's parade grand marshal is Alan Mulally, who grew up in Lawrence and graduated from Lawrence High School and Kansas University and is now the chief executive of Ford Motor Co.

The coronation ceremony also included recognition for the parade's senior king and queen, Alan Johnson and Terri Wilson.

The couple plan to renew their wedding vows during this year's parade. This is appropriate because 19 years ago, during Lawrence's first St. Patrick's Day Parade, the couple were married.

"My recollection of that first parade is when we starting saying our vows on the bridge, it began snowing and green crepe paper was raining down on us," Johnson said.

So far, the weather doesn't look like a problem for this year's parade.

Comments

SpiritTat 7 years, 9 months ago

What time is the parade this Saturday? Anyone know? I looked it up on the events calendar but it isn't there..

thanks

SpiritTat

linus 7 years, 9 months ago

My thoughts exactly, SpiritTat!!!

Can ANYONE tell us what time the parade starts???

LJW???

Please?!?!?!?

kujeeper 7 years, 9 months ago

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frank mcguinness 7 years, 9 months ago

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ilovelucy 7 years, 9 months ago

Typical comments from the crowd of rabble rousers on this thread. Margaret the Queen, and the rest of the committee members have worked their tails off again this year to create a family oriented event and to raise money for 3 very deserving children's charities in Douglas County. Considering that everyone on the committee is a volunteer and that there are 6 successful events in conjunction with each parade, this town should be proud of the work that is done. Over $385,000.00 has been raised in the past 19 years. Tell me, have any of you done something like that for the community? For those of you who like parades, please join us for the 20th annual parade starting at 1 pm on Saturday, the 17th. We have some great floats and it will be a lot of fun!

Thats_messed_up 7 years, 9 months ago

There will also be a flyby of a KC-135 from Forbes Field flown by Lawrence residents at 1pm

linus 7 years, 9 months ago

Azure_Attitude and ilovelucy:

Thank you!

And Kudos to all involved!!!

George_Braziller 7 years, 9 months ago

I know Margaret and she is a gem. Smart, giving, and a beauty to boot. Congrats to her!

DCB 7 years, 9 months ago

Where does the parade start and end. Is there a published map somewhere I could print?

I live in Olathe and was looking for a fun way to celebrate St. Patrick's day with my grandkids without the hassle of downtown KC.

All help would be greatly appreciated.

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