Despite the rain, Mountmellick people lined the streets to view a parade filled with energetic children proudly representing their clubs and town.
Rain did not stop play in Mountmellick when at 2pm on St Patrick's Day, the parade kicked off, MC'd by the great Joe Laffan who sang traditional tunes while the crowds waited in O'Connell Square.
Leading it was Laois Civil Defence and St Patrick himself, with St Peter's Pipe Band from Mountmellick. St Joseph's Accordion Band from Portlaoise took a detour into O'Connell Square, where local army veteran Mick McEvoy then raised the tricolour, and singer Emer Dunne sang Amhrán na bFhiann.
Then it was back onto the street, and the turn of children who marched with clubs including Mountmellick Youth Development Committee, Mountmellick GAA, Laois Martial Arts, Mountmellick Utd FC, Dance-on Stage School, Combat Kickboxing, Darkness Into Light, Mountmellick Scouts, The Rock GAA, Mountmellick Gymnastics and Baton Twirlers and Rosenallis GAA.
The children were followed by a great display of vintage cars, rally cars and tractors, with Raheen Vintage club promising to 'build a great wall'.
Parade organisers Jason McInerney and his team of volunteers had lots of favourite characters and clowns on the street too, while Leona's School of Irish Dancing did a display in the square afterwards.
"It was absolutely amazing, considering everyone had such short notice, it was cancelled only three weeks ago," said Jason.
He thanked all who sponsored and supported the day, including the civil defence, Gardaí and county council, and Kiki Theatre group from Portlaoise for helping create the floats.
"A big thanks to all the people coming out to support the parade in this weather, and to my committee of young people who gave it their all, we are delighted it was a success," he said.
Parade prizes will be announced in the coming days.
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