Bar Crawls Keep St. Patrick's Day Tradition Alive in Hoboken

Annual celebration returns Saturday, minus the parade.

Patch file photo
Patch file photo
If one bar crawl wasn't enough to celebrate St. Patrick's Day, there will be at least two organized efforts Saturday in Hoboken.

"Leprecon," which began in 2012 when the the annual St. Patrick's Day parade was canceled due to rowdiness resulting in more than 30 arrests at the 2011 event, will feature bar crawls, Hoboken Leprecon 2014 and Hoboken St. Patrick's Day.

Hoboken St. Patrick's Day, which listed 41 participating bars Friday afternoon, says on its site, "our sole purpose is to unite the Hoboken community on one of the most joyous holidays of the year."

Hoboken Leprecon 2014, which claims to be "the real, the first, the only and original" Leprecon event, listed seven participating bars as of Friday afternoon.

The bar crawls have maintained a St. Patrick's Day tradition in Hoboken as efforts to revive the annual parade have faded. While the city has pushed for the parade to be held on a weekday, the Hoboken St. Patrick's Day Parade Committee said in January that wasn't possible since many of the performers have day jobs.

The parade's sudden halt after a 25-year run has been a "travesty," Bill Coughlin, parade committee spokesman, told NJ.com.
jim February 28, 2014 at 02:28 PM
Bill Coughlin is 100% correct. They canceled the parade to prevent drunk and rowdy kids but with all the bar crawls hoboken is still filled with drunk and rowdy kids. the drunks didnt even care about the parade, they were probably in a bar or drinking in an apartment while the actual parade was going on. theres no parade and there will still be wild drunks roaming hoboken this weekend like there was last year. the only people being punished by the parade being canceled are the little kids, responsible adults, and parade participants who enjoyed the parade. the drunks are still getting what they want out of the day
Pops February 28, 2014 at 03:55 PM
I enjoyed the parade for many years and miss it, but times change and it was the parade committee's decision to cancel. The last few years of the parade were a nightmare, the city made the right choice, wish the parade committee wasn't so inflexible. We have other weekday parades with bands, too bad the committee was unable to make it work, or perhaps didn't try, not sure. BTW, Jim, the statistics show there have been far fewer problems and arrests for Leprecon compared to when the parade was last here. Yes, there have still been drunks and some problems, but far fewer.
Carol Harrison February 28, 2014 at 04:16 PM
My guess is that the parade committee didn't have any motive to try to get it to work on a weekday. The parade like many parades had sponsors. I bet most if not all sponsors were bars. They would not sponsor a weekday parade.
Tom G. February 28, 2014 at 08:56 PM
Drunk and rowdy kids? How is this any different than every other Friday/Saturday night of the year in Hoboken?
harold O. February 28, 2014 at 11:13 PM
the reason is these bands are booked every year in advance, every town plans their parade on a certain weekend so the bands are available, which is why it is so spread out, these are bands are working people most are firemen and police officers, they are not available to march on a random weekday night
Melissa Orr Azzarto March 01, 2014 at 08:39 AM
It's a shame that the town can't bring back the parade as a family event. There are many local businesses that would sponsor a family oriented event ... Maybe next year?
Carol Harrison March 01, 2014 at 08:53 AM
Tom G. The difference is the word night. Today the party starts in the morning. Some will be passed out before the get to night. It is not even 9 am yet and green clothed fools planning to see how drunk they can get have been spotted. How many are going end up with alcohol poisoning?
Alex C March 01, 2014 at 10:28 AM
I really don't understand how people can complain about people partying and drinking in Hoboken. Almost no one who lives in Hoboken is from Hoboken, and unless you're a lifelong resident, you knew what you were getting into by moving to Hoboken. It's basically a town full of 20 somethings. What did you expect? I think all the old fuddy duddys complaining need to get off their high horse.
Eric March 01, 2014 at 10:53 AM
I'm no tea-totaler, but Bill Coughlin is an idiot. Hey Bill, maybe you and your predecessors should have kept a little better control over how the people your parade attracts affect the rest of us. The travesty is the fact that you have a large number of tax paying adults who dread being in their own town during this one day. Puke, piss, trash, fighting property damage, belligerent drunks in the streets. I am tired of hearing the excuse that you need to have your own special parade on another day, because "the bands get booked". What a bunch of malarkey, money talks. I just saw a listing on Patch last week where a 2 Bedroom apartment went for 2 MILLION DOLLARS! With all of the rich folks in this town, you mean to tell me you can't out-bid the other towns for one or two of them at least?? Sure, there are no Irish-Catholic Wall Streeters at all in Hoboken *rolls eyes sarcastically*. If people care about Hoboken, especially families, THIS is where they will be that day, not NYC. You people just want a big blowout and a pile of money, that's the truth. It has nothing to do with the holiday. There are still lots of people in Hoboken on St. Paddy's, funny, you'd think that would be the perfect way to honor the actual Holiday *AND* keep the number of people down to a more manageable level.
Peter L March 01, 2014 at 09:55 PM
You know St Patrick was half English and half Italian google it my Irish brothers
Outofcontrol March 01, 2014 at 11:40 PM
It's good to see that the Mayor still has loyalists like Eric to keep her vile, anti-old Hoboken attitude alive. Bill Coughlin merely expressed his opinion and , since it was contrary to the official position of the Mayor, Eric immediately pounced with nasty, derogatory insults. Maybe next he'll have the Westfield gestapo hunt down the opposition and weed out the Irish sympathizers.
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Carol Harrison March 02, 2014 at 01:13 PM
Since the March 1st is actually St. David's Day (patron Saint of Wales) and March 5th is St. Piran's day (Patron Saint of Cornwall) and March 17th is St. Patrick's Day... How about we organize some sort of Celtic celebration come back stronger. Caber tosses at pier A, pipes, music, dance, art, poetry. How about a hurried contest in the arts. Lets celebrate Celtic culture not just drunkenness.
Carol Harrison March 02, 2014 at 01:19 PM
Mr. Coughlin, I don't know if what I have heard it true or not, perhaps you can educate me. I have heard that the Coughlin family has or had ownership interest in at least one Hoboken Bar.
Carol Harrison March 02, 2014 at 01:36 PM
St. Maughold is the patron of the Isle of Mann and his day is April 25th (he was Irish Prince converted to Christianity by Patrick.) I would mention St. Andrew of Scotland, but that is November. How about nice civilized Whisky tasting and get whiskies from various Celtic places. Borrow some traditions from the Welsh eisteddfod (celebrations of literature, music and performance).


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