Saratoga Springs

Saratoga Springs gears up for St. Patrick’s Day

Thousands expected for wet celebration
Matt Pawlik and Jason Hamelyn enjoy their pints at Saratoga City Tavern on St. Patrick's Day in 2017.
Matt Pawlik and Jason Hamelyn enjoy their pints at Saratoga City Tavern on St. Patrick's Day in 2017.

SARATOGA SPRINGS — St. Patrick’s Day falls on a Saturday this year and the city is gearing up for what many say will likely be a memorable celebration. 

“There will be a lot of drunk people out,” The Wine Bar Chef Dominic Colose said. “It’ll be a mess in Saratoga.”

Colose said St. Patrick’s Day is typically worse than Chowderfest — which brought out more than 35,000 people on Feb. 3 — in terms of the number of inebriated individuals and garbage. 

“Caroline Street is a mess the next day,” he said about the day after St. Patrick’s Day. “It would be nice to see more business owners be more responsible with the clean-up.

“Maybe they could hand out barf bags when they check ID’s at the door, so that way the streets would be cleaner.” 

Saratoga City Tavern on Caroline Street is set to kick-off its St. Patrick’s Day celebrations at 8 a.m. with the 12th annual “Kegz n’ Eggz,” free breakfast buffet. 

“We usually get a lot of friends and family, and regular customers who come to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with the owners of the tavern,” said Kathleen Stallmer, an accountant at Saratoga City Tavern. 

“We’re busy every St. Patrick’s Day, so adding that it’s a Saturday will be more of an incentive for people to come out.”

Stallmer added that she anticipates Saratoga City Tavern would be busy throughout the entire weekend. 

“I think it’s going to be a really busy weekend around town for all the businesses, which will  give us a nice push to get through the rest of winter,” she said. 

To accomodate an influx of patrons, Saratoga City Tavern will be increasing the number of security personnel, Stallmer said. 

“Police presence is always around, but unfortunately there are always people who don’t act like they normally do,” she said. “Our security guards are able to handle situations before they get out of control.” 

Stallmer said there are several options for patrons to get home safely including Lyft and Uber. 

“There are plenty of options for people to avoid driving,” she said. “Hopefully, everyone won’t make bad decisions and use the resources that are out there.”

Saratoga Springs Police Lt. Robert Jillson said the department would have a strong presence on Caroline Street similiar to Chowderfest. 

“With St. Patrick’s Day falling on a Saturday, we’ll take that into consideration when it comes to our staffing numbers,” he said. “We’re planning for a beautiful day with everything in place for a large crowd.”

Jillson said the police department would likely deal with an influx of medical calls by those who overindulge on alcohol.

A hit-and-run accident killed Saratoga Springs resident Ryan Rossley, 27, on St. Patrick’s Day in 2010.

“We’ll plan for the worst, but hope for the best,” Jillson said. 

He added that the police department would look into setting up a DUI checkpoint in the city on St. Patrick’s Day. 

“It’s a possibility,” he said. “DWI enforcement is a regular part of patrol, so if we go above and beyond that, that’ll be the traffic sergeant’s call.” 

Colose said he feels the police department monitors the holiday celebrations closely. 

“They take care of things pretty well,” he said. “They know where to be and how to prepare.”

St. Patrick’s Day, according to Colose, is an important event for the city’s economy. 

“Alcohol is a huge contributor to this city; we thrive on alcohol sales,” he said. “I just hope people are safe.”

Categories: News, Schenectady County

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