Bemidji Pubs Carry On Tradition Of Annual World’s Shortest St. Patrick’s Day Parade
Adults and kids gathered on the streets of downtown Bemidji to observe an annual St. Patrick’s day tradition.
The St. Patrick’s Day festivities featured live music, dancing, and a really short parade that lasted about 90 seconds. The new owner of Keg N’ Cork said that the parade is a tradition that the former owner of Keg N’ Cork started.
“The parade is a tradition that [former owner] Mitch [Rautio] started a few years ago, almost as a fun little thing to do, and it’s grown to the point now we block off the streets, we have events, floats, depends on the year,” said new Keg N’ Cork owner Tyler Winkka. “So it’s grown a large amount in [a] few years and I hope to continue growing it.”
The premise of the parade is that it starts from one Irish pub and ends at the other pub across the street. It is exactly 78 steps. Each year, the two pubs alternate on the starting point.
“The reason it’s the world’s shortest parade is because here in downtown Bemidji we are in the unique position of having the first, second and only two Irish pubs in Bemidji almost directly across the street from each other,” said Jake Robinson, owner of Brigid’s Pub.
The former owner of Keg N’ Cork, Mitch Rautio, said in previous years the St. Patrick’s Day parade went down to the former Union Station restaurant.
“In previous years back in the ’80s and ’70s, there was a St. Patrick’s Day parade that went from here down to Union Station. So we wanted to bring back the St. Patrick’s Day parade and we thought since we were so close together, 78 steps, that we would come with the world’s shortest parade,” Rautio said.
And when asked if the parade was really the shortest in the world, Rautio told us: “Absolutely by me!”