Leprechaun Days lucks out with the weather

Crowds turned out in force for festival’s major events

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Rosemount Leprechaun Days was a time for people in the community to gather together and celebrate fun and friendships.

Young and old alike had a chance to walk in a parade, listen to music, run a race, look for a medallion and connect with friends and neighbors.

With outstanding weather during much of the 10-day festival from July 21-30, Leprechaun Days drew large crowds during the Grand Day Parade and Midsummer Faire in Central Park, while also giving a chance for community groups to raise money for various causes.

Leprechaun Days Committee President Steve Ball said there are a lot of pieces of the puzzle that needed to come together to make a successful event, and that was made possible by volunteers on the committee.

“It’s sometimes frustrating, but when all of the details come together and you see the energy and the excitement at the parade and the Midsummer Faire, it’s all worth it,” he said.

Ball said the cooperation from the city of Rosemount through its police, fire, parks and recreation, and public works departments make the logistics of events much easier to accomplish.

He said he wanted to thank them all along with the mayor and City Council members who support the event in many ways.

“I am very grateful for all of the time and energy that the committee puts into Leprechaun Days,” Ball said. “I don’t think the public understands all the hard work that goes into it.”

He said the event wouldn’t exist without the efforts of volunteers and the support of businesses and sponsors.

Several local businesses entered into the parade and others planned events for young and old, such as hosting free exercise workouts, a sidewalk chalk contest and a hula hoop contest.

There were close to 70 events during Leprechaun Days, including a full slate on the last day, Sunday, July 30, when typically there are only two or three events.

One of those Sunday events was the third annual Rosemount High School Lacrosse Boosters Golf Tournament, which attracted 52 golfers, including 10 students and four women who teed it up at Southern Hills Golf Course in Farmington.

It was one of four events organized by the lacrosse teams.

The boys and girls lacrosse 3-on-3 (boys) and 4-on-4 (girls) tournaments included 30 teams from Rosemount, Eagan, Rochester, Eden Prairie, Hudson, Shakopee and Northfield along with Minnesota Elite entrants.

In a separate event, current RHS lacrosse players took on a team of former players during the Alumni Game on July 28 with the younger ones winning 17-13.

Thirty teams also competed in eighth annual 3-on-3 Boys and Girls Basketball Tournament, which is organized by the RHS Girls Basketball Booster Club.

That’s 11 more teams than last year.

“Every year it’s great to see everyone come together from Rosemount and local communities to watch kids play basketball,” RHS girls varsity coach Chris Orr said. “You get to see some kids start off by playing in fourth grade and now we are getting to the point of those same kids are playing as eighth-graders, and it’s fun to see them grow and improve their games over the years.”

The event raised approximately $1,200 for the booster club.

While several sporting events aimed to raise money for those programs, the Merchants Bank Community Appreciation Picnic raised $428.38 through a donation box set up to collect funds for the RHS marching band as it prepares for its 2017 appearance in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.

The bank matched the funds and rounded it out to an even $1,000 to donate to the band.

The RHS marching band program also raised money through its brat sale, which operated a stand along the Grand Day Parade route and in Central Park during the Midsummer Faire.

The stand was so popular along the parade route that a second grill was brought in to cook the food and additional food was brought in during the parade.

Some of the other activity included chances to win prizes.

Winners in the Leprechaun Days Fishing Derby, which is organized by Rosemount Parks and Recreation and sponsored by CF Industries, were:

Girls 6 and under – first, Quinn Pettit (7 inches)

Boys 6 and under – first Levi Nelson (8 7/8 inches)

Girls ages 7-9 – first Vanessa Ritchie (10 inches)

Boys ages 7-9 – first Phillip Munberg (8 1/4 inches)

Girls ages 10-13 – first Sarah Peterson (7 3/4 inches)

Boys ages 10-13 – first Thomas Busse (8 1/2 inches)

Winners in the Leprechaun Days Run for the Gold – sponsored by Rosemount Parks and Recreation, Scott Chiropractic and Run MN – were:

4 Mile Male: Luke Labatte (23 minutes, 5 seconds)

4 Mile Female: Lauren Peterson (25:18)

1 Mile Male: Kevin Gunawan (4:47)

1 Mile Female: Lauren Peterson (5:43)

Some of the results from other events are still being gathered. Look in future editions for those results and photos and go online to http://SunThisweek.com/tag/Leprechaun-Days-2017 or http://RosemountEvents.com.

Contact Tad Johnson at tad.johnson@ecm-inc.com or at twitter.com/editorTJ.