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It’s time! St. Patrick’s Day celebrations have returned to Buffalo. It’s the beginning of Buffalo’s two-weekend-long hooley that you can read all about here. But don’t just read about it, experience it first hand when you head down to the Old First Ward, Buffalo’s Irish community, for the Old Neighborhood Parade. After the parade, carry on the rowdy Irish festivities with your new friends at any of these bars and pubs near or on the parade route:
Gene McCarthy’s, 73 Hamburg St.
Gene McCarthy’s is the hub of the Old First Ward. On Fridays during Lent, you’ll find folks from near and far flock to McCarthy’s for their legendary fish fry – they also serve some of Buffalo’s best wings, too. This Irish pub sits right along the parade route, so stop in and grab a pint of their tasty beer, made right next door in their very own brewery.
Lakeward Spirits, 65 Vandalia St.
One of the newest additions to the Old First Ward’s lineup of bars and saloons, Lakeward Spirits is producing top-quality vodka and gin within the walls of a historic 1903 barrel factory. Boasting a massive space on the second floor of the factory you can be assured that Lakeward Spirits will be rocking after the parade as they host their annual St. Patrick’s Hooley throughout the factory.
Ballyhoo, 211 South Park Ave.
Not only is the bar at Ballyhoo equipped with fine local beers and spirits, this unique establishment employs some of Buffalo’s most talented bartenders, too. If you’re craving something a little more refined than cheap beer dyed green, then Ballyhoo is your place. Oh, and if you find your belly rumbling, sate your hunger with one of Ballyhoo’s homemade sausages. You won’t regret it.
Adolf’s Old First Ward Tavern, 555 South Park Ave.
Reopened in 2014, Adolf’s is the quintessential example of an Old First Ward hangout. Much like Cheers, this is the place where everyone knows your name and you’ll hear patrons frequently asking for “the usual”. During St. Patrick’s Day, you’ll stand shoulder to shoulder with proud Irish folk at Adolf’s to chant and sing long into the night.
Swannie House, 170 Ohio St.
A stone’s throw away, The Swannie House is revered as the second oldest bar in Buffalo (just a shade younger than Ulrich’s), opened in 1868. The bar flaunts its humble history of serving sailors and workers of the nearby Buffalo River and grain elevators, and walking through the door is like walking back in time, to a simpler age.
Marinaro’s Larkin Tavern, 131 Van Rensselaer St.
Just a couple blocks north of the hustle and bustle of the parade, Marinaro’s Larkin Tavern blends the charm of an old-tyme neighborhood pub with the the pride of a local sports bar. Aside from serving up some pretty killer wings and stocking a bar with blue-collar favorite beers, the back room of Marinaro’s is a time capsule of local sports memorabilia.