Air pipes

Meet the musicians behind Chicago Garda Pipes and Drums

CHICAGO — Soon you’ll hear the sound of their bagpipes and drums fill the air during parades and other St. Patrick’s Day celebrations.

WGN News Now spoke with members of the Chicago Garda Pipes and Drums about their passion and their busy weekend ahead.

“We practice every week,” explains Thomas Herion, the band’s piper. “It’s a passion for us. Our guys, pipers and drummers, have been drumming for 20 years.

They can hear them play at parades, various events, weddings, funerals, retirement parties and veterans events. This weekend, their tracks will arrive at a site near you.

“We are everywhere,” Herion said. “I think we have about 45 locations where we’re going to be. March 12th we will be at the Archer Avenue Parade, we are leading that one.

With such a busy schedule, Herion says they always have a big pipe in hand, and they do it out of devotion.

“When I arrived, many of us had the same vision, we went to a policeman’s funeral and saw the bagpipes playing,” Herion said. “It was something that was a passion and we wanted to do it.”

As we get closer to St. Patrick’s Day, you’ll see them at various businesses in the city and suburbs. This weekend they will also be at ‘Shamrock’n the Block’ in Old St. Patt.

“Old St. Patts is the best,” the heroine says. “They used to have the biggest block party in the world and now ‘Shamrock’n the Block’. It’s an honor to be here.