Officials Urging For The Safe Celebration Of St. Patrick's Day

There won't be a St. Patrick's Day parade, but police and Pittsburgh Public Safety expect people to hit the streets and head to bars, KDKA's Bryant Reed reports.

Video Transcript

- It's the weekend before St. Patrick's Day, and just like last year, there will be no big parade and crowded bars and restaurants. But that doesn't mean city leaders, as well as business owners, aren't ready for a very busy weekend. So let's bring in our Bryant Reed now. And Bryant, how are bars adjusting to restrictions in place? This has got to be tough for them.

BRYANT REED: Yeah, Lindsay. With law enforcement having a no nonsense policy this weekend, some bar owners are going to extreme lengths, like selling tickets to people who want to get in the door to have a little St. Patty's Day pick me up.

Now, the Harp and Fiddle is typically a St. Patrick's Day staple when it comes to celebration, but this year, owner David Regan is trying to prevent his pub from becoming a COVID cesspool.

Regan sold off tickets for different three hour time slots through the weekend. As one could imagine, they sold out pretty fast. But instead of a normal 1,400 customers, he'll only have about 200 for the day, since only 70 customers can be in Harp and Fiddle at one time, due to occupancy limits.

But he's going this far because Pittsburgh fire officials have said they'll be bar hopping and checking in on businesses to make sure they don't exceed any occupancy limits and they won't be afraid to close down any doors either. Regan says he's OK with that, he just wants to make the best of the situation at hand.

DAVID REGAN: Instead of 1,200 to 1,400 people throughout the day, we're going to have 200. But we'll make the best of it. But we're only allowed to have 70 people, they're here for three hours, they're going to stay those three hours. First session is 10:30 till 2:00, then we have an hour and a half to clean and sanitize everything.

BRYANT REED: Now, even though you can go out, doesn't mean that you should. The CDC recommends that you stay at home, celebrate with family and close friends. As we've seen, COVID numbers have started to plateau, and they say nobody wants to see an unnecessary spike. Reporting live on the North Shore this morning, I'm Bryant Reed, KDKA News.