If you’ve never seen the annual County Ventura St. Patrick’s Day Parade, you really should go. And if you know Nan Drake, well, that’s all the more reason to go this year, on March 14 – when the local civic icon will serve as the parade grand marshal.

The St. Patrick’s Day Parade is one of Ventura County’s most popular community events, drawing thousands to Main Street to watch the 100 or so amusing parade entries of every shape and size (from folks on bikes to a huge inflated pig) but all pretty much the same color. For this event, we’re all green for the day.

And this year, we’re especially delighted to announce that our good friend Nan Drake will lead the parade. Among the county’s most prominent civic leaders, Nan is first and foremost the longtime voice of the E.J. Harrison and Sons trash collection company, now in its 88th year of business serving Ventura County and beyond.

At Whisenhunt Communications, we have had the honor of working with Nan almost daily in our service over the past 30 years to Harrison and its partners at Gold Coast Recycling and Agromin. We’re so proud to provide this service, for the community, for our friends in the wonderful, philanthropic Harrison family and for Nan Drake.

A former city councilwoman, Nan has chaired the boards of many local chambers of commerce as well as numerous other economic and environmental boards in the region and beyond during her 40-plus years in Ventura County. Equally avid about the environment and the economy, Nan is currently the board chair of the Economic Development Collaborative, where she works with the board to develop strategies to improve the economic climate in the region. She has earned countless awards and accolades over the years and for the past 12 years has been named among the Top 50 Women in Business in the Tri-Counties. She was Ventura Chamber’s Citizen of the Year in 2018 and the Livingston Foundation’s Mother of the Year in 2019.

We couldn’t be happier that Nan will be adding this green feather to her cap, as grand marshal of the Ventura Elks Club’s 32nd County Ventura St. Patrick’s Day Parade. A longtime co-chair of the parade, along with Jim Monahan and Brian Brennan, Nan says she’s looking forward to serving as grand marshal this year – and to publicly representing Harrison, a company “I am so proud to work for,” she said. “Every day at Harrison, we improve the environment by recycling, with the help of all of the residents and businesses in our service areas. Together, we’re doing great work.”

About the parade …
The parade commences at 10 a.m. Saturday, March 14, near Mission San Buenaventura, and it makes its way down Main Street toward California Street, ending at Chestnut, where the judges’ stand is situated. This event is a blast; we encourage everyone to go – and more than ever this year, with our dear Nan Drake leading the way.

For more information on the parade and to sign up to enter (the deadline is March 5), visit venturastpatricksdayparade.com. If you have any entry questions, call parade committee member Dan McGrath at 805-231-2779 or committee member Aaron Gaston at 805-340-8217. For other parade information, contact Faye McDonald at funelda@yahoo.com or 805-340-7525; Tim O’Neil at tim@shamrocksfa.com or 805-320-3181; or Drake at nanodrake@aol.com or 805-701-9809.

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