Montreal goes green for annual St. Patrick's Day parade

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Montreal goes green for annual St. Patrick's Day parade

Montreal goes green for annual St. Patrick's Day parade

If you were out celebrating St. Patrick's Day on Saturday, there's one more chance to put your shamrock garb to use.

Montreal's annual parade to mark the Irish cultural celebration started today at noon. It's the oldest of its kind in Canada, and is celebrating its 195th anniversary this year. 

It starts at the corner of de Maisonneuve Boulevard and City Councillors Street, and will wrap up at Mackay Street and René-Lévesque Boulevard.

Thousands of people are expected to line the streets watch the parade.

The parade will include 20 floats, 25 marching bands and more than 4,000 participants, including Mayor Valérie Plante.

The forecast calls for sunshine and a brisk high of –6 C.

Parade moving one block north, changing directions

Montrealers who have gotten used to watching floats advance along Ste-Catherine Street year after year should know that the parade will progress from east to west along de Maisonneuve this year.

The parade is moving one block north for the first time in 55 years due to ongoing work on Ste-Catherine. 

"We see us being on de Maisonneuve for the next few years while Ste-Catherine Street gets its makeover," said Ken Quinn of the United Irish Society of Montreal.

With numerous streets closed in the area for the parade, the Metro is likely the easiest way to get downtown to take part in the festivities.

Green line stops fall all along the parade route. The starting point is between McGill and Place-des-Arts stations.

The parade will wrap up near Guy-Concordia and Peel stations.