Wisconsin city goes to extremes to celebrate St. Patrick's Day
NEW LONDON - While communities across the state get the green beer, corned beef and cabbage, and parade floats ready, one city is getting ready for more drastic measures.
"We take St. Patrick's Day very seriously here in New London," said Carrie Katerzynske, Public Relations Coordinator for the Shamrock Club of New Dublin.
So seriously, in fact, that the city changes its name for a week.
"We change the name of our town to New Dublin and it is by proclamation of the mayor," explained Carrie Katerzynske, Public Relations Coordinator for the Shamrock Club of New Dublin .
The name change happens on St. Patrick's Day.
"All fourteen signs leading into New London are changed to New Dublin. We have a band of leprechauns that changes the name of the town to New Dublin."
But doesn't that get confusing?
"I think everyone knows about it at this point. I'm sure there are a couple of people that come through town and are a little bit confused," laughed Katerzynske.
The name change kicks off a week's worth of Irish-themed, family friendly celebrations, which include Irish caroling, Irish dancing, and an Irish Céili (pronounced kay-lee), which is sort of an Irish square dance. The celebration ends with a big parade and Irish Fest on Saturday.
The events draw a lot of people.
"New London is a town of 7,000 people and the crowds in this town can swell anywhere from 20,000 to 35,000 on parade day, depending on the weather," said Katerzynske.