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St. Patrick’s celebrations in Corktown: Parade, races, and more

Just plan around Michigan Ave.

Photo by Michelle & Chris Gerard

We know that spring in Detroit is SO CLOSE when the annual St. Patrick’s parade and festivities make their way through Corktown. Even though it might not feel like spring necessarily this Sunday, thousands will descend on the oldest neighborhood in Detroit to celebrate its and/or their Irish heritage. Here’s a rundown of what to expect.

FYI, don’t forget about Daylight Savings Time, which starts at 2 a.m. March 12. Set your alarms accordingly and don’t be late.

Also, temperatures should only reach 31 degrees on Sunday, so plan accordingly, especially if you plan to spectate or bar hop.

What: The Corktown Races and the 59th Annual Detroit St. Patrick’s Parade.

When: Sunday, March 12. The race starts at 10 a.m. and the parade starts at 12:30 p.m. (or noon, according to some).

Where: Michigan Avenue. The race starts and ends at Roosevelt Park and the parade will march from 6th to 14th St.

First up is the Corktown 5K, which is one of the bigger races in the city. It starts in front of Michigan Central Station at Roosevelt Park and goes straight down Michigan all the way into downtown, where it turns around at Griswold and heads back.

Corktown Races

The main race starts at 10 a.m., with smaller races starting at 9:30 a.m. All info can be found here. Parking can be tricky, as expected. They will have some lots available around the park, and side streets should be open too. Just plan ahead and around Michigan Avenue, since it will be blocked for the most part. (FYI, many set up and drink in parking lots around bars, so that might not be the best parking choice).

The 59th Annual St. Patrick’s Parade starts at 12:30 p.m. (according to their website) at 6th Street and Michigan Ave., and makes its way down Michigan to 14th Street. The parade will take about two hours and includes various marching & pipe bands, floats, and uh, clowns.

And, of course, there will be parties and revelry Sunday and Friday, St. Patrick’s Day in Corktown. Looking to avoid the crowds? You can find plenty of options around Detroit.

Do you have tips or ideas for this annual rite of Spring? We’re here on the tip line or in the comments.