Irish eyes smiled on the 4th annual Pattaya St. Patrick’s Day Parade, with both participants and onlookers saying it was the best one so far.
Rev. Michael Picharn Jaiseri, president of the Father Ray Foundation, which co-sponsored the March 17 event, opened festivities outside the Alcazar Theater where merchants pitched tents offering Irish food, green beer and knick-knacks from lucky hats to four-leaf clover key chains. Bands played Irish music, dancers clogged and attendees competed in a beer-drinking contest.
“The St. Patrick’s Day celebration in Pattaya City is becoming bigger every year and this year, the parade was participated in by more than 30 floats carrying Irish and Pattaya residents,” said City Councilman Rattanachai Sutidechanai. “This event has promoted tourism very well and the proceeds raised will help the Father Ray Foundation charity activities.”
Somporn Naksuetrong (center), vice president of Royal Garden Plaza & Entertainment, leads the Royal Garden Plaza team in the green St. Patrick’s Day Parade.
After the big buildup, the parade began to roll, with cars and floats covered in green and shamrocks sponsored by hotels, bars and other businesses. Civil defense volunteers from Thappraya 2310 led the procession, followed by the marching band from Pattaya schools. The Centara Grand Mirage Beach Resort won the prize for best float for the second consecutive year.
Wutisak Phinchayakan (standing, center), assistant manager, food and beverage at Centara Grand Mirage Beach Resort Pattaya, and his team accept the outstanding parade decoration award presented by Dr. Picharn Jaiseri (first row, left), vice president of the Father Ray Foundation, at Pattaya School No. 8.
“This is my fourth visit to Pattaya and the St. Patrick’s Day celebration is very impressive here,” said Irishman David Bussell. “I saw the parade billboards and decided to attend because I am an Irish. The parade is magnificent.”
Chantikan Srihan, 14, attended with 13 friends from Pattaya School No. 1’s marching band. “This is my second time participating in the St. Patrick’s Day parade and I am very impressed. I think this year is even more magnificent than last year and I am happy to be participating.”
After the parade reached Pattaya School No. 8, a lucky draw was held for more than 102 prizes totaling more than 150,000 baht, including 12 gold necklaces.
Live Irish music kicks off the event in the Alcazar Theater parking lot in North Pattaya.
Ready, set, guzzle! Who can finish first?
Centara Grand Mirage Beach Resort Pattaya staff perform their sexy jungle dance.
It wouldn’t be a St Patrick’s Day celebration without Murphy’s Law taking part!
St Patrick himself hitched a ride with Gerry’s.
Irish eyes are shining upon these lovely lassies.
A wee Leprechaun was spotted at the parade.
Pattaya School No. 3 leads the St. Patrick’s Day Parade out onto the parade route.
Children from the Redemptorist Center happily march in the parade.
Mike the Cartoon man peers out of the passenger window of this old classic.