The Friends of Oak Forest Animal Control Commission has been selected as the grand marshal of the Oak Forest Fleadh family parade on Saturday, March 4. The parade steps off at 11 a.m. at 157th Street and heads north on Cicero Avenue.
“The Oak Forest Fleadh celebrates Irish culture and tradition as well as the people and businesses of Oak Forest,” said Chamber of Commerce Director Kim Malecky-Iles, who organizes the event. “This year we’re extending that concept to our four-legged friends in an effort to raise awareness about the importance of responsible pet ownership and care.”
The Friends group works in partnership with the city’s Animal Control facility to provide rescue and re-homing of unclaimed and abandoned local animals, improve facility conditions, and increase the success rate of reuniting lost pets with their owners.
As the grand marshal, the commission will lead more than 60 parade units, including pipe and drum bands, civic and community groups, schools and churches, and local businesses along Cicero Avenue.
To make the event even more special, the group is inviting families who have rescued dogs through their program and residents and their dogs to join them as they lead the parade. Participants are encouraged to dress their pets in their Irish best. To learn more or to register to walk with the group, visit the event page.
Before the parade, the Friends of Animal Control Commission will be at the CNB Oak Forest Fleadh 5K accepting donations of pet food and toys; cat litter; and dog leashes, harnesses, and sweaters. They also will sound the horn at the start of the race.
“This is a wonderful opportunity to introduce ourselves to the community and educate people about what we do in the city,” said Alderman Laura Clemons, who was instrumental in forming the commission. “We are so grateful for any and all donations we receive to help us provide food and shelter throughout the year for our animals until they find new, loving homes.”
In addition to the 5K run/walk and family parade, the Oak Forest Fleadh includes an open streets event and a pub and restaurant open house. Participating pubs and restaurants, including:
- Blarney Stone Pub
- Oak Forest Bowl
- Marcotte’s Bar and Grill
- Beggar’s Pizza
- Chicago Gaelic Park
- Oliver’s Bar and Grill
- The Rockin’ Horse Saloon and Grill
- Tap’s Pub
- Nite Games Bar and Grill
Like the Oak Forest Fleadh on Facebook!