East End bars prepare for St. Patrick’s Day crowds, safety measures

ROCHESTER, N.Y. Bars in Rochester are getting ready for a busy St. Paddy’s Day celebration Saturday.

They are looking forward to the thousands of people who are expected at the parade to then continue the celebration and are hoping for a boost in business. News10NBC spoke to two local businesses about how they are preparing for a fun and safe celebration.

The businesses say Saturday will be a big day for them. They are expecting big crowds, something that they need, especially with the recent acts of violence that have been impacting businesses along East Avenue.

Michael O’Leary, owner of Temple Bar and Grill on East Avenue in downtown Rochester, says the St. Paddy’s Day parade helps bring them big business. He is expecting a full house tomorrow.

“It’s an important day for downtown,” he said. “It’s a great marketing tool for downtown to bring some people back. who have been afraid to come downtown.”

The recent acts of violence along East Avenue, such as the deadly shooting at the corner of East Avenue and North Union Street, have impacted business for many but says that won’t stop these festivities.

“Obviously those things affect business,” he said. “They affect people coming downtown. They are isolated incidents. And that the importance of the marketing for people to come downtown and feel safe and have a good time.”

Bars like Daily Refresher are gearing up for St. Paddy’s Day and offering drink and food specials as well as a fun and safe St. Paddy’s Day celebration.

“And we are going to have a bagpipe player and a DJ and it’s going to be a really fun time,” Daily Refresher employee Mary Spengeman said. “We are going to have super huge crowds coming to us tomorrow. COVID is lifted for the most part. It’s going to be a huge party. We are going to have a blast.”

Adrean Hayward, the manager at Daily Refresher, says recent violent incidents have also impacted their business. Along with the increased police presence, they have also beefed up security.

“We also started closing an hour earlier, just to mitigate all the late-night issues that do arise,” she said. “And our owners met with police this week and they will have a decent amount of police stationed in the area.”

We spoke to RPD and it has been preparing for tomorrow’s festivities and have a comprehensive plan in place.