In kegs you were interested… there are egg-cellent opportunities to get your Irish up during St. Patrick’s Day Parade weekend. [Pittsburgh’s official parade day is Saturday, March 16]
You’ll find classic kegs & eggs options, plain ol’ drink+party options, and there are even non-drinking events which were somewhat foolishly scheduled to occur on parade day but are totally worth checking out (assuming you can fight the sea of green paraders and get to them).
Irish we could list them all, but since Pittsburgher’s love a good excuse to drink there’s no shortage of festive events. Check out those that made it onto our drinkworthy list – they’ll be sure to make you green with envy and drunk with excitement.
St. Patrick’s Day Parade
This is the main event folks! Pittsburgh is host to one of the largest St. Patrick’s Day parades in the USA — with 200+ groups totaling 23,000 participants. The parade officially starts at 10am – which gives you plenty of time to get into your Irish gear, eat your Irish breakfast, and settle into a good spot along the route.
Irish Fair in the Square
Once the parade wraps up stumble on over to Market Square for the “Irish Fair in the Square” which boasts a street party where you can drink outdoors and not get busted for your open green beer container. The music starts at 1pm, the green beer at 2pm, and the fun keeps going until the evening. Food vendors will be available.
Who’s Your Paddy Celebration
The Claddagh in Southside Works is an Irish bar so as can be expected they are making a whole week of it to make sure you know Who’s Your Paddy. Starting on March 13 and running thru March 17 each night features fun events, live music, and drink specials. Want to do a Guinness Glass Etching? Go March 13. Want to watch 6 Nations Rugby? Go March 16. Want to jam outside or inside to multiple live bands? Go March 16 or 17.
Mullaney’s Harp & Fiddle
The Strip District’s Irish go-to is the Harp & Fiddle. Before heading to the parade check out their breakfast which starts at 8am. On both Saturday and Sunday if you’re looking for 12 hours of live music, an authentic Irish vibe, and more Guinness than you can turn into a car bomb into then squeeze yourself into the Harp for a Irish-rockin’ fun time.
Friday Night North Side Brewery Tour
Technically this is the night before parade day, but that is crucial. Use it as a St. Practice day pre-gaming event or just keep it rolling right up until the parade starts. It’s a “design-your-own” tour to the three local breweries and if you get your passport stamped at all three in one night you get a free t-shirt!
Not only does this Brewmuda Triangle event have an amazing name, but the bus ride between the three breweries is free! If you don’t want to head to the heart of the city then go to Helltown. The fun starts at Helltown at 10am with breakfast and bloody marys. At noon you’ll be taken to Yellow Bridge and then go on to Devout at 1pm then back to Helltown at 2pm. The bus runs goes 1 stop each hour and eventually cycles back around (the logistics seem both straightforward and tricky). But since you can get to local breweries, not have to worry too much about the transport, and get treated to live music, it’s a perfect alternative to the downtown festivities.
The Funhouse at Mr. Smalls with the Cheer’ly Men
Assuming you’re still standing and have found your second wind by evening then head over to the The Funhouse at Mr. Smalls in Millvale for an evening with Pittsburgh’s premiere sea shanty band the Cheer’ly Men and special guest “CRAIC” (which means “fun” in Gaelic). Classic Irish party songs are sure to be on the set list and while not technically a karaoke event who’s gonna stop a fun-loving crowd from raucously singing along? $10 Tickets available here.
Pittsburgh Creative Arts Festival
If the parade is “knit” what you’re looking for then on Mar 15-17 check out the Pittsburgh Creative Arts Festival for an alternative event. The event is located in Greentree (so it’s kind of Irish?) and features classes, workshops, demos and a marketplace focusing on a variety of creative arts. (This is a ticketed event and advanced tickets are discounted and can be purchased here.)
Bloomfield Saturday Market
If you’re looking to “go green” but are also looking to stay away from the downtown celebrations head over to Bloomfield for their Bloomfield Saturday Market from 11am – 2pm. It’s a kid-friendly time where you can check out a farmer’s market, vendors, and stay away from those robust Irish celebrations.
Pittsburgh Gaelic Athletic Association
If you don’t get your fill of all things Irish in one weekend the city boasts a Gaelic Athletic Association of mens, ladies and youth Irish football teams. They practice in the Spring, play in the Summer, and drink year round.