Leave Green Beer at Home, St. Paddy's Day Parade Goes Dry

It's all an effort to be family-friendly in New Haven

Forget the kegs, coolers and wagons filled with beer this St. Patrick's Day if you're spending it in New Haven.

The city is cracking down on public drinking at the annual parade and opting to show a family-friendly side, the New Haven Register reports.
"Some people were just turning it into a drinkfest," police chief James Lewis told the newspaper. His department has already told downtown businesses that police officers will no longer look the other way. 
"We had a lot of complaints about the conduct of a lot of people. People were saying, 'I'm never bringing my kids to the parade again because it was so bad," Lewis added.
It looks like the parade committee agrees. 
Chairman Walter Nester told the paper they consider it a great family event and  "we don't endorse drinking in the parade." 
The St. Patrick's Day Parade tradition was born in New Haven on March 17, 1842 and in 2009, an estimated 200,000 spectators lined the streets of the Elm City.
Both the Town Green Special Services District and Greater New Haven Convention and Visitors Bureau support the ban on public drinking.
Rena Leddy, executive director of the Town Green, noted that New York City doesn't allow drinking at its St. Patrick's Day Parade or in Times Square on New Year's Eve. 
Last year's parade in New Haven "was overshadowed by the outrageous public drinking downtown," she told the newspaper  "Monday morning looks like a war zone." 
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