Fenian’s Pub

Wearin’ of the Green

March 19, 2009 // 0 Comments

by CLIFF and NANCY HILL GeneAnn Schaefer of Courtland & Main’s Frame and Mat Shop has told us for years that we really should attend the annual Saint Patrick’s Day Parade in Conklin, Michigan. So this St. Patrick’s Day (Tuesday morning) the Squire took a 17-mile road trip west of Rockford to discover just where the heck Conklin, MI was.  Turns out Conklin is a little farming community in the middle of apple country.  Main Street holds a feed mill, a seed store, a general store, and the post office along with its one claim to fame, Fenian’s Irish Pub. Fenian’s is not just any Irish pub; it has been voted the number one Irish pub in Michigan.  It is an authentic family-owned and operated Irish Public House.  It also has the reputation of being the “Home of Irish music in West Michigan.” Fenian’s is the official or unofficial, if you will, sponsor of the town’s annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade. The 22nd Annual “Wearin’ of the Green” Parade turned out to be, as touted by Schaefer, “One hoot of a parade.”  Mind you, Main Street is only three blocks long.  The parade kicked off promptly at 11 a.m. from the north end of Main Street, with the intention of walking the entire three-block distance. Leading the parade was 2009 Grand Marshal Rob Schaefer (husband of Grand Marshalette, GeneAnn) proudly waving the Irish Tri-Color flag. Following right behind was Fenian’s Fiddle & Bodhran Band, along with the Grand Rapids Catholic Central High School Marching Band playing Irish tunes.  The Drum Major was directing the band with an authentic Irish Shillelagh.  The cast of characters was as short as the parade route itself.  There were a few dogs pulled in wagons, one antique car, a couple of bikes, and a flat-bed truck whose riders were tossing green beaded necklaces and green carnations to the spectators. What made this parade special was a throng of Irish and would-be-Irish, all clad in various shades of green, which joined in the parade as it proceeded down Main Street.  Ethnic origin aside, on this day, everyone present was Irish. As Irish luck would have it, Fenian’s Pub is smack-dab in the middle of the route and the parade ended right […]