City News

The vote to disband the Sedona Main Street Program earlier this year left some wondering who would oversee one of its signature events — the St. Patrick’s Parade. In stepped the Sedona Parks and Recreation Department, which agreed to take over the event set for Saturday, March 11.

The parade begins at 10:30 a.m. at the Jordan Historical Park, travels south on Jordan Road and ends at Mesquite Avenue.

“We believe we are prepared,” Parks and Recreation Manager Rachel Murdoch said. “I have some jitters since we are all new and not sure how things have been done in the past. If we miss something, it’s going to be because we didn’t know it was supposed to happen. We have no one on our team from previous parades. So this year may be a bit different, or have some changes, but the parade will happen and we hope people will still enjoy the efforts on the part of the entrants.”

With no experience under their belts in terms of running a parade, Murdoch said it’s been a bit of a scary process. But they’re not completely alone. Once again, the parade will receive assistance from 50 students from Northern Arizona University.

“There has been quite a lot to learn,” she said. “We just had to jump in with the new NAU team as well and figure it out. I think it could be fun to work on, given a larger lead in time. I hope it still runs smoothly for the participants and that the spectators enjoy it as well.”

Murdoch said they have 42 entrants in the parade. There were difficulties early on with finding contact information from people who have participated in the past. So she said people were confused where to turn and whom to go to for registration purposes. It was also a challenge because people kept looking to the SMSP website for information because that is not turned off. As a result, they were getting incorrect information.

Unlike past years, there will not be a festival after the parade. This portion was dropped because of volunteer help and time, she said.

“We will probably add onto next year’s event but I do not know if it will come in the form of a festival,” Murdoch said. “We are looking [next year] into hosting a St. Patrick’s Day run. I have been told that St. Patrick’s Day is the second most popular holiday to host runs behind Thanksgiving. I think that would be a great addition, plus it encourages activity, which our department supports.”


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