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First-ever Rocklin St. Patrick’s Day Festival kicks off next week

By: Lauren Weber, The Placer Herald
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Horses, mules and Shriner mini-cars will soon take over Lonetree Boulevard in Rocklin. But it won’t be an effect of consuming too much green beer – it’s all part of the festivities hitting Rocklin for St. Patrick’s Day. The celebrations will kick off Wednesday, March 11 with dollar carnival rides for all and free entrance for those with disabilities, and finish Sunday, March 15 – with bands, cars, crafts, food and a parade in between. Hosted by the Kiwanis Club of Rocklin and co-sponsored by the city of Rocklin, many community members have high hopes for this first Rocklin St. Patrick’s Day Festival. “We’re doing this because of two reasons,” parade committee and Kiwanis Club member Alan Stone said. “One of them is because there is no St. Patty’s Day parade locally. And as a service club, one of the things we do is help fund projects in the community.” The club hopes this event amounts to a fundraiser, raising money for Rocklin Unified School District children, schools and Parent Teacher Clubs. “We hope that this will be a lot of fun, become an annual event and help community programs,” Stone said. Some of the planned entertainment includes the Lincoln High School band marching in the Saturday morning parade, accompanied by local Girl Scout troops, sports teams and other community groups. Parade marchers begin their decent at 9 a.m. on March 14 at the intersection of Atherton Road and Lonetree Boulevard. Their two-mile trek will go along Lonetree Boulevard toward Blue Oaks Boulevard, into the Blue Oaks Town Center and finish at the storefront of the closed Mervyns building. But before the parade and throughout the weekend, the center will be open and filled with entertainment, crafts, business booths, 14 different carnival rides, food and more. Gene Johnson with the Kiwanis Club of Rocklin said there will be “three rather special things” – the Shriner cars making an appearance in the parade, the carnival rides and the Rocklin Police Department child identification booth. The booth will offer children and parents a kit containing a Polaroid picture, hair sample, ink fingerprints and safety tips for free. The kit includes the child’s name, address, date of birth, social security number, contacts, a slot for a current photo, an envelope with a couple strands of the child’s hair and a space for prints of each finger. Additional booths and craft areas will be set up for children and adults as well. Planning for the festival has been underway since October, before the suspension of the Rocklin Jubilee was announced. But the club has high hopes for both to be a success in the near future. “I think when the economy picks up, Rocklin may very well have two parades,” Johnson said. For more information on the festival, go to www.rocklinkiwanis.org or call 276-3443. Contact Lauren Weber at laurenw@goldcountrymedia.com.