A Restored Pratt Street
Through improved and restored retail storefronts, renovated residential spaces, and curated programming, Pratt St is being rediscovered.
Thousands of people are counting their lucky charms, grateful to resume all the celebrations that surround Hartford’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade.
From green beards to cold beers, partygoers started their merrymaking at the top of the morning Saturday.
“It’s been three years since we had a last proper parade, and we’re just looking forward to the camaraderie, the fun, the music,” Rachel Vazquez, Glastonbury, said.
Kegs and Eggs drew Vazquez and others to Vaughan’s Public House on Pratt Street. The crowd gathered around the bar donned emerald-green head-to-toe, from wigs to tutus.
Others were embracing more traditional Irish culture.
“I’ve danced with the Coogan School of Irish Dance, which is now combined with the Griffin Academy, for 22 years,” Madison Hyland, West Hartford, said. “Irish culture means a lot to me, Irish dance, Irish everything.”
There was no testing the luck of the Irish at the Republic at The Linden. An indoor setup allowed people to take in a panoramic view of the parade by the warmth of a glowing fire.
“You get to see everything, and good location, and have something to eat. Good Irish food!” Bob Reilly, who was attending the event, said.
Owner Jared Cohen says downtown spots missed the festivities when the parade was canceled two years due to the pandemic.
“I mean for us as a business it’s just amazing, and it’s been a very difficult two years, and this is just another sign that things are starting to come back,” Cohen said.
Those partaking in a day of good fortune say the return of this 50-year-tradition feels a bit like finding a pot of gold.
“It’s easy to take things for granted,” Matt Pinheiro, Rocky Hill, said. “To be able to have this opportunity again, three years later, it’s a blessing. That’s why we’re out in full force today and ready to go!”
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