SCRANTON, LACKAWANNA COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — The postponement of the 59th annual Scranton St. Patrick’s Parade didn’t stop people from celebrating in the Electric City.
Eyewitness News spoke with people who didn’t let coronavirus concerns rain on their parade. In years past downtown Scranton was filled with people. But Saturday the streets were more quiet than normal.
“It’s devastating. This is a big family tradition for us to come down here every year and this is our spot where we gather every year and we usually bring a lot of food. Tons of hot dogs, green chocolate, green pretzels,” Mary McDonough Ives of Jessup said.
The Saint Patrick’s Parade Association of Lackwanna County has decided to postpone the 59th annual St. Patrick’s Parade in light of recent developments of coronavirus.
When asked what he would miss the most about the parade, Matthew Kochis of Jermyn said: “Bagpipers. Bagpipers for sure. They’re the best.”
It’s a decision that community members share their differences on.
“You know it’s strange with everything going on, though you really can’t blame the committee for delaying it or postponing it,” Justin Dephillips of Clarks Summit said.
“Very disappointing. I feel like if people just took precaution and were sanitary, I feel like the parade could still go on right now,” Gee Critch of Old Forge said.
“I think it was a poor decision upon the city’s planning, but at the same time, I can understand why they did it,” Joshua Straub of Scranton said.
It’s affecting businesses downtown.
“It’s very hurt you know, the business is going down. Nothing going on,” Nisar Basery of The Halal Brothers said.
Owners of Backyard Ale House say it’s just not the same.
“Certainly you can see the energy down a little bit. The crowds obviously exercising precautions,” Backyard Ale House owner Patrick Nasser said.
But some are keeping their spirits up and if one thing’s for sure…
“It’s okay because the parade might have been cancelled but the Scranton party never stops,” Karina Lynn of Scranton said.
Party goers still made their way up and down town, enjoying the holiday weekend, just with extra precautions.
“We’re not sharing drinks, washing our hands,” Emily Gregorski of Shippensburg said.
“We are going to be going to some bars and stuff. We may not go in but we are going to be there, taking some pictures,” Rosemary Grazaitis of Maryland said.
“Ain’t no party like a Scranton party because the Scranton party don’t stop,” Critch said.
Sounds like they said it best.
The Scranton Saint Patrick’s Parade Association says it will enthusiastically plan a new date this year for the parade in downtown Scranton.