Largest participation expected for Tybee Island Irish Heritage Parade

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TYBEE ISLAND, Ga (WSAV) – As the Coastal Empire and Lowcountry prepare to celebrate Saint Patrick’s Day, Tybee Island is counting down the hours until its unique celebration.

The 16th annual Tybee Island Irish Heritage Parade is set to be the biggest parade to date.

According to Parade Chairman Jay Burke, 100 different units are set to walk, march, float and cruise down Butler Avenue.

Mayor Jason Buelterman told WSAV the island expects more than 20,000 people to be a part of the parade.

One of those is Jessie Baxter.

She and her family come to the island twice a year from Ellijay, Georgia. One of those times is usually around Saint Patrick’s Day.

“I mean why not here,” she said. “Come on, there’s a great parade, you can sit on the sidelines and watch everything happen.”

She says the caliber of the parade and the spirit of the people around her keeps her coming back each year.

“Everyone’s not just going through the motions and making through the end, everyone’s so into Saint Patrick’s Day and the celebration,” Baxter said.

The parade is set to start at 3:00 at Tybee Island City Hall. Then parade participants will travel down Butler Avenue and end near the pier.

Buelterman says normal parking and metered spots are still going to be enforced on Saturday. He encourages people to come early to avoid possible traffic jams getting onto the island.

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