Albany's St. Patrick’s Day Parade is tomorrow. The 68th annual march, touted as a "family-friendly event" will carry on a number of traditions.
The largest parade in the Capital Region has a long tradition - its theme and purpose re-affirmed in 2016 by Mayor Kathy Sheehan. "This has always been intended to be a family-friendly event. Our families are very important to us. It's part of our Irish heritage and we want a parade that we can bring our children to and that we can point to with pride for all that it celebrates."
Albany Police spokesman Steve Smith says the department follows the mayor's guidelines. "So we just wanna alleviate any issues that could result as a result of consuming alcohol. There will be no alcohol whatsoever allowed to be consumed in the street. You may bring a backpack, you may bring a cooler, but if you're caught drinking in the street you will be approached by an officer, and if not warned, definitely written a ticket for open container under the Albany city general ordinance."
Whether you're attending the Irish Sweat-er 5K road race or watching one of the parades, authorities want you to know your safety is their priority. Smith says barricades are in place on every side street along the main parade route. "During the parade itself, cross-streets along Central Avenue will be closed, and no traffic will be able to cross Central Avenue. Typically, as the parade passes, as the end of the parade passes, those intersections, we will be able to open 'em back up."
The 5K run begins at 11 a.m. It will start and end on State Street between Broadway and Pearl Street, using many of the same roadways as the parade, which steps off at 2:00 p.m. from the intersection of Central Avenue and Quail Street, then proceeds east on Central to Washington Avenue; then east on Washington to State Street; and finally east on State to Pearl Street.
The hour-long North Albany Limerick Parade will kick off at noon on North First Street west of North Pearl Street at the North Albany American Legion Post.
As for public safety at these events, Smith reminds people of the mantra "if you see something, say something." "All police officers will be quite visible. We wear bright yellow vests on details such as parades. You now we learned a lot from the bombings at the Boston Marathon, and the way we approach large events such as the St. Patrick's Day Parade, Tulip Festival and other events throughout the city, we wanna make sure we approach it in a way that is safest for those in attendance. It really tales the community to be the eyes and ears for the police as well. If anybody sees anything or hears anything that may be suspicious, notify the police."
The St. Patrick's Day parade and race schedules are posted below.
St. Patrick’s Day Events in the City of Albany
Road Closures and Parking Restrictions
North Albany Limerick Parade – Saturday, March 17, 2018 from 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m.
The North Albany Limerick Parade route:
Kick-off – North First Street west of North Pearl Street at the North Albany American Legion Post; parade will proceed east to North Pearl Street, then south of North Pearl Street to Emmett Street; east on Emmett Street to Broadway; North on Broadway to Wolfert Avenue in the Village of Menands; back south on North Pearl Street to North First Street
• North First Street between Broadway and Van Rensselaer Boulevard
• North Pearl Street between Wolfert Avenue and Emmett Street
• Broadway between Wolfert Avenue and Emmett Street
• North Second Street, eastbound at Broadway & eastbound and westbound at North Pearl Street
• North Third Street, eastbound at Broadway & eastbound and westbound at North Pearl Street
• Lawn Avenue, westbound at Broadway & eastbound and westbound at North Pearl Street
• Bonheim Street, eastbound at Broadway & eastbound and westbound at North Pearl Street
• Lindbergh Avenue, eastbound at Broadway & eastbound and westbound at North Pearl Street
There will not be any parking restrictions for the North Albany parade.
St. Patrick’s Day 5K Run – 12:00 p.m.-1:30 p.m. AND
Albany St. Patrick’s Day Parade 2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
The 5K run will utilize the same roadways as the St. Patrick’s Day Parade. The 5K, however, will start and end on State Street between Broadway and Pearl Street.
Road Closures – Saturday, March 17, 2018:
Starting at 11:00 a.m., Central Avenue between Manning Boulevard and Quail Street will be closed for parade lineup.
Also at 11:00 a.m., 5K and parade route will be closed to ALL TRAFFIC:
Parade Route - Central Avenue starting at Quail Street, parade will proceed east on Central Avenue to Washington Avenue; then east on Washington Avenue to State Street; east on State Street to Pearl Street.
PLEASE NOTE - All cross streets along the parade route will be also be closed in preparation for the 5K and parade kick off. This will include Eagle Street as well as North and South Pearl Streets from Pine Street to Hudson Avenue.
Parking Restrictions - Saturday, March 17, 2018 from 6:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.:
• Central Avenue, both sides from Ontario Street to Lake Avenue.
• Quail Street, east side from Central Avenue to Sherman Street.
• Washington Avenue, south side from Dove Street to South Swan Street.
• Eagle Street, east side from Corning Place to Pine Street.
• State Street, both sides from Lark Street east 3 spaces on each side.
• State Street, south side from S. Swan Street east to Plaza Road east of LOB.
• State Street, south side from Eagle Street to Pearl Street.
• State Street, both sides from Pearl Street to Broadway.
• South Swan Street, east side from Madison Avenue to Washington Avenue.
• Broadway, both sides from Pine Street to Hudson Avenue.