EYEWITNESS NEWS (WBRE/WYOU) — Do you have your ghillies ready? Do you know where your Blowstick is? For hundreds who will be performing in Scranton’s annual parade, I’m sure they do.

In this week’s Eyewitness to History, we take you back a dozen years to look at some of the annual rehearsals that take place before parade day.

For participants in area parades, they put in many many hours practicing, to make sure they put on a great performance come parade day. In this week’s Eyewitness to History, with the help of this year’s honorary grand marshall-our own Mark Hiller. We go back to March of 2010 for the preparations that were done then, for that year’s Scranton parade.

It wouldn’t be a St. Patrick’s Parade without traditional Irish dancing. And these students from Crossmolina School of Irish dance in Scranton are prepared to dance up a storm Saturday even if it is raining. The parade committee gave the green light to hold the parade rain or shine because so much is at stake.

There’s such an economic impact. Families coming in from out of town.

They’ll see Irish step-dancers like eighteen-year-old Shannon Joyce who’s like a big sister to many of the younger Crossmolina dancers.

“I try to help them learn their steps. Make sure they have their ghillies’ soft shoes that’s what the ghillies are. And their hard shoes and make sure they are all prepared for the dances,” said Shannon Joyce, Crossmolina Irish Step Dancer.

The Crossmolina Irish step dancers are one of about a half dozen step dancing groups that will be part of the st. Patrick’s parade in Scranton. This year a record number of pipe bands will perform.

Jim Sweeney and about twenty other members of the greater Scranton black diamonds pipe band are among them.

“We have people coming in from all over the country. In fact, one of our pipers is actually driving in from Florida just to play with us,” said Sweeney.

All kinds of music from bagpipers to marching bands keep the crowd entertained and in place.

We want the people to be entertained. We want the kids along the route to stay for every minute of the parade. That’s why we really push music.

Hoping that a twist on a popular Irish blessing will translate into success.