PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – Only New York City has a larger St. Patrick’s Day parade than the one held in Pittsburgh.

However, the celebrations have gotten a little out of hand in the past. This year, some changes are being made to make it more family friendly.

From the looks of things, everybody is already Irish and the parade featuring Miss Smiling Irish Eyes isn’t until Saturday.

On Tuesday, Pittsburgh City Council declared the week of March 10-17 as St. Patrick’s Day Week.

One of the criticisms of the past, was that the celebration in Market Square got out of hand. This year, between the hours of 10 a.m. and 2 p.m., it will be family-focused.

Face painting, balloons and doughnuts for the kids will be offered. Then, at 2 p.m. a big country concert kicks off in the square.

“Everybody wants to get out of the house. They’ve been cooped up all winter, so this is a wonderful time of the year to celebrate a great holiday, and we want it to be a family friendly event,” Parade Organizer Jim Green said.

More than 20,000 people will be in Saturday’s parade starting at 10 a.m. More than 100,000 people will watch it wind through downtown and Green hopes a few minor tweaks between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. will keep everyone in line.

“The Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership is helping to coordinate that. Dunkin’ Donuts is doing a little something there with the kids’ activities. So, we are making an effort to do something in Market Square,” Green said.


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