When I went out to cover the St. Patrick's Day Parade on Saturday, I was also on a fact-finding mission, determined to finally find out exactly what is, or isn't, under the kilt. The two shots I was able to obtain for our slide show revealed: 50 percent of men prefer tighty-whiteys; the other half, rubber chickens.
Those worried that the March 2 fire further down Greenville Ave. would dampen the spirit of Saturday's festivities probably didn't count on a record-setting 80,000 coming out and o'bout during the one day of the year Dallas throws a bona fide big-city street party. Among the 100ish entries in the parade were corporate-sponsored floats, teams of tattooed roller derby girls, bikers, politicians, acrobats, Hare Krishnas and Hooter girls on Hummers. An assortment of makeshift, float-like contraptions carried live rock bands, mullet enthusiasts, pirates and the self-proclaimed matriarchs of the parade, the Texas Tortilla Queens, who years ago started the fabulous tradition of flinging thousands of green tortillas down the parade route.
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Another staple of the Greenville Avenue parade is tailgating in the lot of the Parkit Market at University and Greenville. Owner Tony Todora has always welcomed the party -- band the business it brings to the family-owned store. In fact, for more than 20 years Chris LaBarba (aka The Music Man) has DJ'd the event and kept the party going on Upper Greenville long after the parade moves south. But this year the music was shut down promptly at 2 p.m. by order of a Dallas Police officer. The owner said they have never been cut off before -- after all, it's private property in a non-residential zone. But the officer wanted the music off so the crowd would disperse. An Sheriff's Department deputy manning a mobile paddy wagon said no arrests were made during the parade. Just good, clean, wholesome bedlam.