Though a parade will march through North Myrtle Beach and Irish Fest will return to The Market Common, no St. Patrick’s Day event is scheduled for downtown Myrtle Beach for the second year in a row.
Chris Walker, president of the group that once held the event, confirmed it would not return to Ocean Boulevard in 2017. Last year, the event also was canceled after Walker’s group, the Oceanfront Merchants Association, said it was unable to fund it.
The group cited declining sponsorships and the city’s refusal to support it with in-kind services. OMA later lost some of its funding, and most downtown events were transferred to the Downtown Redevelopment Corp.
The DRC is hosting another event in the spring, however: a food truck festival scheduled for April 1. Amie Lee of Palmetto Event Productions, the contractor DRC uses to run events, said the event has received a lot of positive feedback.
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“The businesses, and I think OMA and DRC, were looking to do something different,” she said. “Culinary events are so very popular right now.”
Elsewhere, St. Patrick’s Day celebrations will continue. North Myrtle Beach’s parade is scheduled for 9 a.m. March 11, rain or shine, and The Market Common also is expected to hold its Irish Fest.
The focus on a food-centric event for the spring in Myrtle Beach mirrors the city’s move to install a new seafood festival last fall. That event replaced another iconic OMA event, the annual Oktoberfest celebration.