Pittsburgh businesses express excitement about new date for annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade

PITTSBURGH — Erin go bragh: We now know when the Pittsburgh St. Patrick’s Day Parade will step off.

After it was cancelled in 2020, and postponed earlier this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, organizers said they were going to work toward holding it in the fall.

The parade will now be held on Saturday, Sept. 18 at 10 a.m. in downtown Pittsburgh. Nearly one-fifth of Pittsburgh residents claim Irish heritage, and the parade is one of the oldest in the country.

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The thousands of people who head downtown for the Pittsburgh St. Patrick’s Day Parade are normally big business for bars, restaurants and hotels. But for the Mullaney Harp and Fiddle, it’s their biggest day of the year.

“Especially for us being an Irish pub, this parade is going to be a lifeblood — it carries us through for a couple months throughout the summer because it’s usually slower,” explained owner David Regan.

Regan says his Irish pub has had a slow comeback since all of the COVID restrictions expired. During the heart of the pandemic, he was closed for months and even had to lay off his bartenders and wait staff.

“We were closed for a few months and then again in December, and people are still a little bit afraid to come out, but I think they’re dying to come out at this point.”

Mack McCafferty is the chairman of the Pittsburgh St. Patrick’s Day Committee.

“In January, I contacted the city and told them obviously we can’t have the parade in March. It’s too much of a public safety issue,” explained McCafferty. “We picked out Sept. 18, because it’s halfway to St. Patrick’s Day, and decided to go with it and see what we could do.”

With the parade set for September, they’re hoping for warmer and dry weather. McCafferty said the parade normally brings in 350,000 people to downtown Pittsburgh and that it’s the largest event in the city every year, and brings in millions of dollars for the local economy.