Oh man - we're closing in on the one year mark where things really started going crazy last year. St. Patrick's Day will mark the anniversary of when restrictions kicked in for bars and restaurants and made us all realize that COVID-19 was going to be a roller coaster ride.

The recap below is from a KPAX article last year:

"MISSOULA: Missoula City-County Health Department officials issued an order to close bars and putting limits on restaurant services starting on Tuesday, March 17 and lasting through 8 a.m. on Tuesday March 24th. While the order prohibits the operation of bars and dine-in food service, the order does allow for drive-thru, take out, and delivery service. It also doesn’t include food services that are a sole source of food for a population such as nursing homes, UM dining, or hospitals. Food services that operate in a limited capacity need to follow the food service regulations and additional guidance from the health department."

It's kind of crazy to read that now. It was so strange when those restrictions were going into effect - but here we are a year later and masks and crowd capacity have just kind of become our way of life.

Outside of some socially distanced examples, we're still not back to holding events that include the gathering of crowds. That kind of puts a damper on any parade plans with St. Patrick's Day sneaking up on us. Butte has announced that they'll be doing things a bit different and holding a "standing parade" this year. If your response to that was the same as mine - asking "what in the world does that mean?" - here's your answer from a MONTANA RIGHT NOW article: "Instead of a parade, the Butte Chamber of Commerce is encouraging residential houses, businesses and schools to decorate their buildings and enter them into the "standing parade" contest."

I don't know of anything that the City of Missoula is doing to replace the St. Patrick's Day parade this year. Have you seen or heard of anything?

But here's a couple things I've seen scheduled around town:
- The Run for the Luck of It race can be done as an in-person 7-mile option or virtual 5k option. The 7-mile race happens on March 13th.
- The Great Fort Missoula Cooking Show - St. Patrick's Day Edition. Are you feeling lucky? With St. Patrick's Day right around the corner, there is no better time to try out some yummy Irish recipes
- A virtual concert of traditional Irish song, dance, and music taking place on the 17th with Friends of Irish Studies.

If you know of anything else - drop us a note!

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Stacker used data from the 2020 County Health Rankings to rank every state's average life expectancy from lowest to highest. The 2020 County Health Rankings values were calculated using mortality counts from the 2016-2018 National Center for Health Statistics. The U.S. Census 2019 American Community Survey and America's Health Rankings Senior Report 2019 data were also used to provide demographics on the senior population of each state and the state's rank on senior health care, respectively.

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