St. Patrick's Day

Remembering The Great St. Patrick's Day Flood Of 1936

Mar 17, 2016
Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA

At the beginning of the 20th century, flooding was not uncommon for Pittsburgh. Businesses and residents were used to dealing with spring flooding and no official action had been taken to combat rising water levels from the city’s three rivers. On St. Patrick’s Day, 1936, however, usually warm temperatures resulted in a rapid thaw of the winter ice and the city was engulfed in 46 feet of water. We’ll talk with Heinz History Center museum project manager Lauren Uhl joins Essential Pittsburgh to discuss the flood and how it impacted the Steel City.  We’ll also hear from St. Stanislaus parish historian Derris Jeffcoat about how nuns living there survived the flood and Klavon’s Ice Cream Parlor owner Jacob Hanchar about how the Klavon family escaped the rising waters.

Corey O'Connor On His Family's Irish Origins And Traditions

Mar 17, 2016
Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA

Among the many Irish families in Pittsburgh, the O’Connors are one of the most well-known. The late Bob O’Connor served as city councilman and mayor and his son, Corey, is currently a member of Council, representing District 5. Corey says celebrating their Irish heritage is an essential part of being an O’Connor.  He recounted his family’s story and modern commemoration of their culture for Essential Pittsburgh’s Paul Guggenheimer.

Joe Flaherty / IMDB

Pittsburgh born actor/comedian Joe Flaherty joins us to talk about his amazing career. It took him to the famed Second City Theater in Chicago and then to Toronto where he not only established another Second City troupe but also became one of the original writer/performers on SCTV, playing memorable characters like Guy Caballero, Sammy Maudlin, and of course the iconic TV horror show host Count Floyd. Mr. Flaherty will discuss SCTV, his movies and anything else that comes to the high functioning mind of this ad libbing performer.

Megan Harris / 90.5 WESA

Organizers estimate up to 250,000 people flocked Downtown for Pittsburgh's 2016 St. Patrick's Day parade.

Now in it's 146th year, the event featured more than 23,000 participants from nearly 200 marching units, including Pittsburgh-area floats, politicians, school bands, first responders, local Irish-heritage groups and others.

Creative Commons / Wikipedia

City officials hope to address perennial traffic problems caused by St. Patrick’s Day revelry on Pittsburgh’s South Side, by introducing special rules for drivers and partiers this weekend.

City Council President Bruce Kraus, who represents the neighborhood, announced several temporary changes for Saturday's bash. Those changes include free parking just across the Monongahela River, parking restrictions along East Carson Street, a ride-share zone on the street’s 1700 block and a free circulator bus.

The rules take effect 7 a.m. Saturday and end Sunday at noon.

Flickr user DrivingtheNortheast

Pittsburgh’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade and celebration is scheduled to begin at 10 a.m. on Saturday. We’ve put together a list of what you need to know to make the most of the day.

PittsburghDonnybrook.org

The first Europeans to settle in Pittsburgh in large numbers were Scots-Irish. Later, the Irish were a major part of the wave of immigrants who came to the Steel City for the promise of a job. These jobs often turned out be laborious and low-paying.

Jim Lamb, President of the Irish Institute of Pittsburgh, has a vast knowledge of Irish heritage in Pittsburgh. He says a major turning point for the population of Pittsburgh and many other northeastern cities was the Irish immigration. But he says Pittsburgh also had a successful Irish community as the mass immigration occurred.

Pittsburgh police say there were no major criminal incidents or problems during the city's St. Patrick's Day parade on Saturday, or at celebrations afterward, though 71 people were arrested or cited, mostly for alcohol-related infractions.

Public Safety Director Michael Huss says about 23,000 people lined the parade route, many of whom then celebrated in the city — and were joined by other revelers — most at Market Square or the South Side, a redeveloped neighborhood with a large concentration of bars.

Deanna Garcia / 90.5 WESA

St. Patrick’s Day is Monday,, but the Steel City’s celebration will take place Saturday, starting with a parade and continuing with partying and revelry throughout the city.

The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation has announced a joint DUI enforcement effort with the Pennsylvania DUI Association, the PA Liquor Control Board and local law enforcement.

Pittsburgh’s colors may be black and gold, but they’ll soon be replaced by green and gold, as one of the largest St. Patrick’s Day parades in the country prepares to take the streets.

Starting Saturday at 10 a.m., more than 23,000 participants, including some Olympic athletes, will march downtown along Grant Street and The Boulevard of the Allies.

Joining in the festivities this year are four-time Olympian and three-time medalist Lauryn Williams and gold medal-winning Irish Olympian Michael Carruth.

The Business of St. Patrick's Day in America & Ireland

Mar 11, 2014
Katherine Blackley / 90.5 WESA

From parades to shamrocks and the wearin’ o’ the green you see a lot of people celebrating St. Patrick’s Day in Pittsburgh. But how does the U.S. celebration of this holiday differ from Ireland’s?

Anne Flynn Schlicht, Assistant Director at the Center for Women's Entrepreneurship at Chatham University and a native of Cork, Ireland, discussed the business of St. Patrick’s Day.