Thousands Expected for St. Pat's 5 Points Festival

Columbia, SC (WLTX)- 40,000 people are expected to attend the 32nd annual Five Points St. Patrick's Day festival Saturday.

In the crowd you can expect to see more than 100 Columbia Police officers, and that includes newly appointed acting chief Melron Kelly.

Kelly is taking the lead after the resignation of interim chief Ruben Santiago Thursday.

"There are no major changes, It's the plan that was put in place based on the projected crowd. We are expecting thousands of people to the 5 points area for the festival," said Kelly.

Amy Beth Franks, the Executive Director of the Five Points Association, says there is a change to the rules this year. For the first time, you will not be allowed to re-enter the festival.

"It is important to keep people safe and we are asking for their understanding," said Franks.

She says the change is becoming a new industry standard and will help keep people in the area safe.

Gates open at 9am and the parade will start at 10am. Tickets are $15 at the door.

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