Home Events + News Leprecon 2024 + Other St. Patrick’s Day Events Taking Place This Weekend

Leprecon 2024 + Other St. Patrick’s Day Events Taking Place This Weekend

by Hoboken Girl Team
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St. Patrick’s Day is right around the corner and this year, Hoboken residents and visitors will have several opportunities to celebrate the holiday. Over the years, the reputation of Hoboken St. Patrick’s Day has become legendary — albeit somewhat controversial. What was once a day that celebrated a 26-year tradition and hosted NJ’s biggest parade, turned into a day filled with arrests, public drunkenness, and chaos for law enforcement. Some say the celebrations had gotten out of hand, while others miss the Hoboken St. Patty’s Day festivities. There are several events taking place in 2024 — so whatever your St. Patty’s preference, we’ve got the details here. Read on to learn more about the history of St. Patrick’s Day in Hoboken and what we know about this year’s celebrations.

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History of the Parade

Hoboken has been a seat for celebrating Irish culture and traditions for a very long time, owing to the large population of Irish immigrants who settled in Hoboken, starting in the 1840s.

Hoboken held an annual St. Patrick’s Day parade throughout the city from 1986 to 2012.  The parade was originally a 14-block march that began on 14th and Washington Street and ended on 1st and Washington Street. In its 26-year history, it was New Jersey’s largest parade and drew spectators from throughout the Tristate area. Many of the town’s organizations and clubs participated in the parade, such as the Hoboken High School Rockin’ Redwings Band (as well as other high school bands), marching pipe bands, traditional Irish dancers, antique cars, fire trucks, cultural organizations, and nominated honorees for Irish Man and Woman of the Year, Firefighter of the Year, Police Officer of the Year, and more.

Read More: 36 Hours in Hoboken: Irish Heritage Edition

Traditionally, the parade was always held on the first Saturday of every March, but in an attempt to maintain the rowdiness that occurred during the festivities, former Mayor Dawn Zimmer moved the parade to a Wednesday. Ultimately, the decision was made to cancel it indefinitely in 2012, due to the overwhelming popularity that made it difficult to ensure public safety.

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Behind the Bar Crawl

The LepreCon Crawl is a privately-organized event, coordinated by Pubcrawls.com, that quickly took the place of the annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade. Per its name, it’s a Hoboken bar crawl held on the first Saturday in March. The event became known as a cause of public drunkenness and bar fights, leading to arrests, hospital visits, local complaints, and other issues. Per TapInto, the presence of law enforcement was increased in an effort to curb rowdiness, especially after the crawl’s one-year hiatus during the pandemic. Increasing police presence and publicizing fines have reportedly helped decrease issues to an extent, though the event is still frowned upon by many local residents and businesses.

The City of Hoboken has been trying to crack down on this event. Mayor Bhalla has urged both residents and businesses not to participate — though many local businesses say that participation is crucial to keep business afloat during a slow season.

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Hoboken Celebrations in 2024

Hoboken St. Paddy’s Day Bar Event

The Hoboken St. Paddy’s Day Bar Event will take place on Saturday, March 2nd. The venues participating include Black Bear Bar + Grill, Birch, Texas Arizona, River Street Garage, The Brass Rail, Fat Taco Tequila Bar, Green Rock, House of ‘Que, The Lola, Mike’s Wild Moose Saloon, Tally-Ho, The Waiting Room, Union Hall, and Wicked Wolf.

The same coalition of Hoboken bars and restaurants got together to organize the Original Hoboken St. Patrick’s Day Bar Event in 2023, which ended up being canceled. The same group who planned these events also got together to host HoHoHoboken in December 2022 and December 2023 to provide an alternative celebration to SantaCon. The Hoboken St. Paddy’s Day Bar Event is not affiliated with any organization outside of Hoboken and every aspect of the event is organized, supervised, and funded by the coalition.

Gary Yip, co-owner of several participating venues and founder of Hoboken Hospitality was spearheading the organization of the event in 2023. Before the event was canceled, he shared with HG, “I’m proud to work alongside my fellow business owners in listening to the voice of our community and creating an experience that Hoboken can be proud of.”

See More: Egan + Sons: A Classic Irish Pub in Montclair

The Official St. Patrick’s Day Pub Crawl 2024, Luck Of The Irish St. Paddy’s Pub Crawl Hoboken, + St. Paddy’s Shamrock Stroll Bar Crawl

Pubcrawls.com is a nationwide events company that was founded in Hoboken. According to co-founders Damon Trifeletti and Joe DeFilippo, the company started in 1991 and started organizing events in Hoboken in 2008. “We’re the largest pub crawl company in the world, with over 200 cities in America. Since we’re from Hoboken, we take a lot of pride to make it special,” they said.

Revelers will have four chances to celebrate with the events put on by Pubcrawls.com. The Official St. Patrick’s Day Pub Crawl on Saturday, March 2nd + Sunday, March 17th, The Luck of the Irish Pub Crawl on Friday, March 15th, and the Shamrock Stroll on Saturday, March 16th. During all four events, drink specials and other perks will be available at participating venues. Participants must have tickets in advance.

“The goal of the event is to give the customer value for their ticket and a great experience. Our goal is to make it as fun as possible and give a tremendous amount of value,” they said. “We try to work with everyone and want to ensure that there’s a good experience for customers. We’ll have giveaways, contests, drink specials, and other fun things for participants. We want people to have a great time in Hoboken and keep coming back to Hoboken.”

To stay in the know with all of the local happenings, follow @thehobokengirl on Instagram and TikTok, and sign up for our weekly newsletter here.

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