What a great reason to put on a big old Irish-themed party in September: On Monday, September 17, we’ll be halfway there to the First Ever 16th Annual World’s Shortest St. Patrick’s Day Parade March 17, 2019, on 98-foot Bridge Street in downtown Hot Springs.

To mark the occasion, Visit Hot Springs will celebrate the Halfway There point with a Pop Up Pub Pop Up Party from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. on the Plaza Lawn of the Hot Springs Convention Center at Convention Boulevard and Malvern Avenue.

“We’ll get our attitudes adjusted so that we concentrate on making the 2019 St. Patrick’s Day Parade even better than its predecessors,” said Bill Solleder, marketing director for Visit Hot Springs. “We will set up the world-famous world’s largest inflatable pop up Irish pub, O’Kelley’s, and feature music and entertainment and just plain fun. Adult beverages will be available.”

Solleder said the identity of the celebrity grand marshal for the 2019 parade will be disclosed at 5:30 p.m., leaving plenty of time to celebrate the disclosure.

“It’ll all be free and open to the public,” Solleder said, “and we encourage everyone who has come to anticipate this great annual Hot Springs celebration of fun and wacky good times to come out September 17 and join in the Pop Up Party. We’ll be halfway there.”

The parade, which began in 2003, annually attracts crowds of upwards of 30,000 people to watch an insanely zany collection of marchers, strutters, dancers, waddlers and floats cover the 98-foot length of Bridge Street in the heart of downtown Hot Springs.

 For more information call Bill Solleder at 501-321-2027.