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‘It’s not really worth it’: Some New Orleans St. Patrick’s Day celebrations cancelled again

A popular block party and parade have cancelled for the third time, but on their own accord.
Published: Mar. 8, 2022 at 10:44 PM CST
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NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - A few celebrations that have become synonymous with St. Patrick’s Day in New Orleans have been canceled for a third time this year, but this time, voluntarily.

“We just said it’s not really worth it,” Molly’s at the Market Manager, Trey Monaghan said.

Monaghan has gotten to enjoy his grandfather Jim Monaghan’s French Quarter parade every single year of his life, except for the last two.

“It should have been around for about 40 years and we only got 38 of those, so it’s a bummer that it’s not happening this year,” Monaghan said.

St. Patty’s Day 2020 was the first time in Molly’s history the bar had ever been closed and the first time the parade would be canceled, all due to COVID, but not before a last-minute surprise. Monaghan says the permitting price increased 500-percent in 2020.

“We didn’t find that out until eight days before we were supposed to parade that there would be that much of a price increase,” Monaghan said. “So, to sit here and try to kind of calculate what the city would allow us to do this year just wasn’t worth the headache and also seeing how things happened with Chewbacchus, seeing how things happened with Krewe du Vieux, seeing how their parade routes had to be changed and altered last minute because of the manpower shortage with NOPD.”

He’s also been watching the recent changes to second-line enforcement and seeing the other St. Patty’s parades taking cuts.

“All the different things that the city thinks are really important to crack down on, it has a lasting impact on the whole fabric of the city’s culture from the Irish Channel to the French Quarter to the second lining on Claiborne,” Monaghan said.

While there is regret from Decatur to Mid City, Finn McCool’s owner, Sean Kennedy, says there was just too much uncertainty applying for a permit in January.

“We didn’t know whether we could or couldn’t and when we made the decision we wouldn’t, I think ultimately it’s proven to be the right decision,” Kennedy said.

He says it would be close to impossible to enforce the city’s last remaining COVID protocol, proof of vaccination, with the sheer number of people that usually pack his block.

Kennedy also feels for the police coming off of 14 days of Mardi Gras detail.

“Our police department is way understaffed and way over-utilized right now. We certainly know of some of the events that are struggling to get those police officers,” Kennedy said.

Kennedy says he can wait to properly celebrate Ireland’s Patron Saint.

“Let’s, next year, do it right and safely for everybody,” Kennedy said.

Both pubs will be open on St. Patrick’s day and are hoping people will stop by.

Finn McCool’s will still be serving up traditional Irish food along your favorite pints and Molly’s will be pumping out their famous Irish coffees.

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