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St. Patrick's Day FAQs 

An updated edition of our Frequently Asked Questions about Savannah's most beloved celebration

click to enlarge PHOTO BY JOHN ALEXANDER
  • Photo by John Alexander

Love me some St. Patty's Day in the SAV, fam! Amirite?

SURE, but Patty is a girl's name. If you insist on abbreviating it, at least go with "St. Paddy's Day." Though "Paddy" is often a derogatory term for the Irish, not to mention pretty disrespectful to a saint.

Cool story, broseph. So in Savannah you can just walk around with your drink and get lit? Southerners are crazy.

MAYBE, but we don’t consider to-go cups crazy. They are one of the most enlightened things about our fair city, an admirable legacy of the days when Americans were trusted to be capable, competent citizens responsible for their own decisions.

Anyone over 21 can enjoy an alcoholic drink in public areas throughout most of downtown north of Jones Street. To-go cups must be paper, plastic or styrofoam, and 16 ounces or less. No other alcoholic containers are allowed, cans or bottles.

You guessed it: There are special rules on to-go cups just for this Festival and for this Festival Area. More on that later.

“Festival Area.” How does it work?

HERE’S the deal: For this three-day “Festival Period” from Thursday-Saturday, the rules change in the “Festival Area,” aka “The Control Zone.”

To use to-go cups between East Broad on the east, the Savannah River on the north, MLK Jr. Boulevard on the west, and Broughton Lane to the south (from MLK to Drayton, where it moves north to Bay Lane), you must buy a wristband at $10 a day.

The cost of the wristbands goes to pay bands and pay for cleanup and other things which make our fine Festival possible.

Wristbands needed Thurs. 10 a.m.-midnight: Friday, March 17, post-parade until midnight; Saturday, 10 a.m.-midnight. See map this issue for purchase locations.

We’ll just get turnt inside my car. That’s my “Festival Area,” lol.

NO. That’s actually called the “DUI Area.”

YASSS QUEEN! Scored a parking spot right on the parade route. We’ll just take this yellow bag thingie off the meter. No one will know, right?

NO one except the police and the tow truckdriver. You can’t park on the parade route. Owners of towed cars must get a release form from police HQ at Habersham and Oglethorpe. Good luck!

OK, OK. How about on street parking?

FRIDAY, March 17, parking is prohibited on the parade route and in the marshaling areas. Savannah Chatham Metropolitan Police will tow vehicles parked in the prohibited zones and parade route beginning 6am on Friday, March 17.

Meters & Time Zones will NOT be enforced Friday-Sunday. However, ALL other violations will be cited.

What about parking garages? We can tailgate and party our ass off in the garage right?

NOPE, tailgating from vehicles & loitering in the garage is prohibited.

Bryan Street Garage, Curtis Cooper Lot, Liberty Street Garage, the Robbie Robinson Garage, State Street Garage, Visitors Center Lot, and the Whitaker Street Garage underneath Ellis Square will be open to the public during the festival for $20 a day.

Garage parking for the public on Thursday, March 16, will be limited to make sure monthly passholders can secure a space. Garage parking will be open to the public at 6 a.m. Friday, March 17. Monthly passholders are guaranteed a space until 8 a.m.

The Civic Center Parking Lot is closed for the duration for staging.

Visitor Day Passes are NOT valid in City parking garages & lots during March 16 – March 19. Residents must pay to park in the garages whether they have a residential permit or not.

Vehicles parking in the garages will not be allowed to exit until after the parade ends.

Our rescue pit is gonna love the parade. We had the brilliant and totally unique idea to put a green bandana on him. No one else will think of that on St. Patrick’s Day, I’m sure.

NOT actually questions. But no, dogs aren’t allowed in the Festival Area. The only exceptions are service dogs and residents walking their own dogs.

Hey, I gotta pee, any porta–potties in this town?

WE have what’s called in the business a Crap Ton of portable toilets. Most are along the route itself or nearby adjacent squares. Bull Street, Abercorn Street, and Bay Street are your best bets. River Street will have nearly 100 from one end to the other, and City Market will have about 20.

There’s actually a map here.

No worries, I’ll just whip it out right here.

NO! Please refrain from relieving yourself al fresco—public urination is the single most “popular” reason to get arrested on St. Patrick’s Day here.

What are the best feeds to follow for breaking news?

THE City of Savannah is tweeting breaking festival updates at @savstpat

Savannah Metro PD tweets at @scmpd

For real-time road closing/opening info, go here.

Our Twitter and Insta handle is:@connectsavannah

But just as you don’t drink and drive, don’t text and drive either! cs

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About The Author

Jim Morekis

Jim Morekis

Bio:
A native Savannahian, Jim has been editor-in-chief of Connect Savannah for 15 years. The University of Georgia graduate is also a travel writer, authoring regional guides in the Moon handbook series... more

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