If 2021 is going to be better than its predecessor, as we’d all hoped, it had better get its act together quickly.
This year's annual Shamrock Club of Wisconsin St. Patrick’s Day Parade, slated for March 13, has been postponed. (Last year's parade was canceled two days before it was planned to take place.)
At the moment, the plan is to host the parade on Sept. 25 as a “Halfway to St. Patrick’s Day Parade,” instead, but we’ll see what the intervening months have in store for Milwaukee and the world.
According to a press release from the organizers, they’re working with the Milwaukee Health Department and the City of Milwaukee to keep an eye on the situation between now and September.
“Due to the gathering restrictions under the current Moving Milwaukee Forward Safely Order, it is unlikely we’d be able to host such a large-scale event at this time,” said Stacie Callies, executive director of Westown Association, in the release.
“While there has been progress in controlling the spread of COVID-19 locally, there are still many uncertainties this early in the new year. We encourage everyone to keep wearing masks and practice social distancing so we can safely celebrate again in the fall.”
Milwaukee’s Shamrock Club of Wisconsin St. Patrick’s Day Parade is among the oldest in the nation, with roots that take it back to 1843. The parade has been produced by the Shamrock Club of Wisconsin since 1967, with Westown Association as a partner since 2002.
Each year, more than 120 units, including dance groups, pipe and drum corps, local celebrities and dignitaries and more march past more than 30,000 spectators Downtown.
The event helps generate money for Downtown businesses, which sure could use that income this year.
“Although we are disappointed that we cannot host the parade in March, this decision was easily made with the health and safety of our participants and spectators in mind,” said Shamrock Club of Wisconsin Parade Director Mike Boyle.
“We are excited to hold our first ever Halfway to St. Patrick’s Day Parade in September as long as public health conditions allow, but in order for that to happen we need everyone to continue to follow COVID-19 safety guidelines.”
Born in Brooklyn, N.Y., where he lived until he was 17, Bobby received his BA-Mass Communications from UWM in 1989 and has lived in Walker's Point, Bay View, Enderis Park, South Milwaukee and on the East Side.
He has published three non-fiction books in Italy – including one about an event in Milwaukee history, which was published in the U.S. in autumn 2010. Four more books, all about Milwaukee, have been published by The History Press.
With his most recent band, The Yell Leaders, Bobby released four LPs and had a songs featured in episodes of TV's "Party of Five" and "Dawson's Creek," and films in Japan, South America and the U.S. The Yell Leaders were named the best unsigned band in their region by VH-1 as part of its Rock Across America 1998 Tour. Most recently, the band contributed tracks to a UK vinyl/CD tribute to the Redskins and collaborated on a track with Italian novelist Enrico Remmert.
He's produced three installments of the "OMCD" series of local music compilations for OnMilwaukee.com and in 2007 produced a CD of Italian music and poetry.
In 2005, he was awarded the City of Asti's (Italy) Journalism Prize for his work focusing on that area. He has also won awards from the Milwaukee Press Club.
He can be heard weekly on 88Nine Radio Milwaukee talking about his "Urban Spelunking" series of stories.