During the 2012 ‘Sham-Rock the Block’ St. Patrick’s Day fest in Lake George, a crowd watches a contestant compete in a keg tossing contest. This year’s edition of the Irish-themed block party is to be held Saturday March 15 and Sunday March 16. Photo by Tim Weatherwax
The village known for revelry as well as family-oriented fun will be hosting the fourth edition of its successful St. Patrick’s Day weekend festival this weekend, Saturday March 15 and Sunday March 16.
Although the holiday is regarded as primarily a holiday for adult celebrating, Lake George’s Sham-Rock the Block features a variety of activities for all ages — it provides a memorable time for children as well as adult partyers.
The event was founded in 2011, and both its popularity and lineup of activities have expanded each year.
To be held at the north end of Shepard Park, this year’s Sham-Rock the Block will include a St. Patrick’s Day parade, as well as Gaelic music, Irish food, several traditional Celtic games and a beer garden outside Duffy’s Tavern. Lower Amherst St. will be blocked off for the crowd to enjoy the music and festivities outdoors. About a dozen craft vendors are to be offering their wares for sale.
A “pub crawl” — featuring a trolley transporting revelers from one tavern in the village to another — starts at 2 p.m. and continues long into the night. For details, call Judd’s Tavern at 668-2554.
For children, activities both days include bounce houses, pony and wagon rides, face painting, games and a gold-coin scavenger hunt.
On Saturday, the festivities will be ongoing from 10 a.m. to at least 8 p.m., and on Sunday, the celebration kicks off at noon with the village’s St. Patrick’s Day parade and continues until 6 or 7 p.m.. The procession, which includes about 30 marching units and floats, starts at West Brook Road, proceeds up Beach Road and concludes at Amherst St.. Two noted Irish marching bands are to be featured: the famed NYS Corrections Emerald Society Pipe Band, and the Sons & Daughters of Erin Pipe Band.
The Grand Marshall of the parade is Bill Manion, owner of Molly Malone’s Irish Gift Shop, event founder Linda Duffy said.
“Bill is 100 percent Irish, and he is a pillar of the community, having served in the fire department for many years,” she said.
Musical entertainment both Saturday and Sunday in the beer garden is headlined by the Celtic group The Searson Sisters of Canada, along with Irish singer-songwriter Bill Padowitz of Glens Falls. Appearing Saturday only will be the Wild Irish Step Dancers as well as the band McGroovin‘ of Albany. On Saturday night, the rock group Spoiler will be playing upstairs inside Duffy‘s Tavern.
Irish food to be available includes corned beef and cabbage dinners, Irish stew, shepherd’s pie, traditional Irish soups, Reuben sandwiches, as well as burgers and hot dogs off the outside grill.
Adult games are to be featured, whether it’s the keg-tossing competition or the traditional “hurling of the Haggis.”
Also, there will be an informal dog talent show at 2 p.m. Sunday, and dogs with their owners will be introduced onstage. In this friendly competition sponsored by The Dog Cabin, costumes and tricks are encouraged.
Among the businesses offering discounts and special offerings during the weekend are: Molly Malone’s Irish Gifts, Lake George Baking Co., Judd’s Tavern, Bella’s Deli, J.C. Montana’s Family Restaurant, Mario’s Restaurant, Duffy’s Tavern & Liquors, Quality Inn, Adirondack Pub & Brewery, and Super 8 Motel, TD Bank, Inn at Lake George, and Guiseppe’s Restaurant & Pizzeria.
People attending the festivities are asked to bring a food item to help re-stock the local food pantry.
Duffy said she was pleased that such a large crowd has turned out for the prior Sham-Rock the Block parties — the first municipally sponsored Irish festivities on record to be held in Warren County.
Lake George is a family-oriented, popular destination,“ she said. “There’s no better place to have a St. Patrick‘s Day block party and parade.“
For details on the event call Duffy at 361-2559.