DAVENPORT, Iowa-- Thousands of people are expected to celebrate St. Patrick's Day this weekend at the Mississippi Valley Fairgrounds. It's hosting its second annual St. Patrick's Day Festival Friday, March 15 and Saturday, March 16.
"This day, everyone turns Irish and drinks and has a good time," Director Shawn Loter says. "I love seeing everyone dressed up in green and come to one place and have a good time. that's what it's all about."
He and his team spent a whole year planning the family-friendly party, from the green centerpieces on the tables to the green drinks at the bar.
Smokin' Butts BBQ is feeding the masses at the free event, from corn beef to cabbage and potatoes.
"We're trying to keep it traditional," owner Billy Sheredy says. "Cooked a thousand pounds of corned beef and close to about 800 pounds of pulled pork."
Inside, bands will take to the stage all day Saturday. Loter hopes people will make it a part of their celebrations this weekend.
"There's a lot of bars and businesses that celebrate St. Patrick's Day, and hopefully everyone goes around and visits those places and then comes here afterward and parties," he says.
Proceeds from raffles go right back to the fairgrounds. Loter says after Saturday, he'll turn around and start planning for next year.