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Beefing up police presence ahead of parades

Posted at 11:45 PM, Mar 18, 2016
and last updated 2016-03-20 09:52:01-04

Expect to see a huge police presence at both of Buffalo's Saint Patrick's Day Parades.

“It’s the one weekend a year we know we’re going to be extremely busy,” owner of Darcy McGee’s, Conor Hawkins said.

Close to 80,000 spectators are expected to line the streets for both the South Buffalo and Downtown Buffalo Saint Patrick’s Day Parades, this weekend.

Bars and restaurants like Darcy McGee’s and Local are expecting hundreds, if not thousands, to fill up their tables and seats this weekend.

“We will have tons of bartenders and security. Oh yea, we are ready to rock,” Local Kitchen & Beer Bar Manager, Liz Zavarella said.

With South Buffalo’s annual old neighborhood parade on Saturday and Downtown Buffalo’s annual parade set for Sunday, police said this will be a busy weekend for them. 

“We will have a strong police presence, but we want people to come down. We want people to have a great time,” Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown said.

Don’t expect to see any beads or candy thrown from floats at either parade. This comes after complaints last year about drunken kids jumping over barriers. This year the parade committees decided to end this part of the parade’s tradition.

The Old Neighborhood parade committee even changing its route to avoid South and O’Connell. They said there were complaints about rowdy and drunken crowds last year.

Mayor Brown more police will be patrolling the parades than last year, but residents shouldn’t worry. Instead they should just come out and enjoy the festival parades.