Saturday March 16th the city of Pittsburgh held their annual St. Patrick’s Day parade, a tradition that dates as far back as 1869. From Grant Street to the Boulevard of the Allies, Thousands of people lined up along the sidewalks to witness the estimated 25,000 participants of the parade. The event started at 10am and concluded at 2pm. The Parade featured 199 Marching units; one of the most prominent was the Pittsburgh Fire Department. Craig Mahouski of Green Tree was marching in his 6th parade with the Pittsburgh Fire Department, Mr.Mahouski said of the event “It’s a shame the weather for this year’s parade isn’t as nice as last years, but I do enjoy participating in this every year with the men I work with”. Mr.Mahouski’s wife, Lori was also in attendance. Mrs.Mahouski added that “I’ve been coming to the parade for years, but unfortunately this year I’m not up to the weather as I have been in the past”. Also going on, further up the street from the parade at CONSOL Energy Center on Fifth Avenue was the Pittsburgh Penguins playing host to the New York Rangers at 1pm. The city has been in a buzz with the Penguins winners of 8 games going into their matinee with the Rangers. The city was quite busy with tens of thousands of people attending either or both events. One person taking advantage of the busy day was Rob Kachmar of Pittsburgh was on his way to the game when asked about his day so far Kachmar explained, “I work on the North Shore, and the downtown area rarely has this much going on. I really don’t mind coming down on a very busy Saturday to celebrate the holiday and especially seeing the Pens”. After the Parade concluded at 2, Market square was closed off to cars and became a pedestrian traffic area for “Irish Fair in the Square”. Amongst participating was Drew McCarthy of State College, Pa who said “I have been in State College for almost 2 years now and word has traveled about the festivities they do here, I’m glad I could come out for this”. The event featured several establishments serving up Green Beer. The buzz during the fair was about the Penguins game going on. Every establishment had the game on and people focused on the game. Not surprisingly much of those around market square were wearing Penguins St. Patrick’s themed shirts. The Penguins were able to hold off the Rangers 3-0, and extended their win streak to 9 games.
With the Tradition of celebrating St. Patrick’s Day in Pittsburgh having gone on for long, this event was a great example of the pride people who live in Pittsburgh have for their city. For the parade part of the afternoon there were people of all ages taking it all in. Then the over 21 crowd just taking up on the traditions they’ve saw growing up. What really brought the city alive was the buzz about the Penguins. It really made for a memorable St.Patricks Parade Day.