BUTTE – They’re loud, they’re proud, they’re the members of the Edmonton Police Pipe and Drums band, and they haven’t missed performing at St. Patrick’s Day in Butte in 34 years. So what is it that keeps these Canadians coming back for more?

“Actually it’s the people, we have a great time here. We actually have such a big friendship and a family down here that it’s like coming home,” said the band’s Pipe Major James McKee.

The band will spend the next two day playing at the schools, senior centers and local bars, giving more than 20 performances, and that’s physically demanding for a bagpiper.

“The lips, the face will be sore and out of breath, the ribs will be hurting, the arms hurting from squeezing the pipes to keep the constant pressure up,” McKee said.

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Loud enough for you? Well, for 34 years the Edmonton Pipe and Drum band have been performing in Butte. In fact, it’s really not St. Patrick’s Day until this band starts to play.

“These guys are part of that equation, they come here every year for St. Patrick’s Day, the Fourth of July, and it’s just real important that they’re part of our story,” said Headframe Spirits Co-owner John McKee.

So, with all this music, what they’re favorite song?

“I don’t have one. I’ve got 100 or 200 in my head, so I like them all,” said James McKee.

And so does the Mining City.

MTN Reporter: John Emeigh

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