Last weekend was the first-ever Halfway to St. Patrick's Day street festival, brought to you by the Lawrence St. Patrick's Day Parade Committee.

If you're not familiar with Lawrence's St. Patrick's Day Parade, you might not know that the big parade on March 17 is only one event that surrounds this holiday. The committee starts meeting every year in the fall to plan a whole bunch of different events that raise funds for children's charities.

Currently, the committee is accepting applications for the 2012 beneficiaries. If you know of a non-profit agency in the Lawrence or Douglas County area that works with young people, please encourage them to apply! Applications will be accepted until 5 p.m. on Oct. 3. More information, including the application, is available here.

Now, back to the party last weekend.

We were happy to help out with the street festival by securing the necessary permits from the city as well as providing the drinks. We set up a bar outside, our block was closed to traffic and a stage was set up at 8th and New Hampshire. Three bands performed: Radio Flyers, Ashley Davis and Imminent Domain. The committee requested a $5 donation for a wristband in order to drink outside.

Unfortunately, the weather wasn't very cooperative. Saturday was gray and rainy and cool, and it certainly kept some people away. For those of us who sweated buckets during our own block party last month, though, the cool weather was a welcome relief!

Lots of loyal Sandbar friends and St. Patrick's Day fans came out for the party, and bagpipers from Kansas City even stopped by to entertain us. We also loved the bands; we'll keep them on our list for potential bands for our next birthday block party.

Tomorrow, we'll tell you about a surprise guest who made an appearance at the party!