The Largest Bar Crawl in the World
By: Caroline Renfro
Several years ago as the Bobcats staff and players were going through our pre-game rehearsals and warm ups, the arena started to fill with smoke from one of the kitchens. We were all escorted out into the parking lot behind the loading dock, where we all stood - various team personnel, two teams of NBA athletes, about 20 NBA dancers, a giant orange cat, and at least two leprechauns - until the smoke cleared and we were allowed back in.
While we waited the St. Patrick’s Day bar crawl, an event that anyone who has spent time in uptown Charlotte the Saturday nearest the 17th of March has no doubt witnessed in all it’s glory, stumbled past us en masse.
I remember thinking that the most remarkable thing about this situation was that the bar crawl participants were either so wrapped up in their reveling or - more likely considering the crawl starts at noon and it was now approaching 6pm - so drunk that they didn’t notice the strangeness of our group (or the celebrities in our ranks).
I Choose to Skip the Week-Long Hangover
I’m not here to knock the crawl. I’ve participated, albeit as an employee of a beer distributor, and as the world’s largest St Patty’s Day Pub Crawl it obviously has mass appeal. But, in my 30’s it no longer appeals to ME. I enjoy a good bar crawl as much as the next guy, proverbially speaking, but I prefer the accidental kind that happens on a random Tuesday off.
No, for me, St Patty’s Day is a great chance to have a Guinness and a Shepherd’s Pie but skip the week-long hangover. And so, I present my guide to the Crawl-Free St Patty’s Day.
Step 1: The Pint(s).
This part is the easiest, since most bars serve Guinness. But for an authentic feel Charlotte has a pretty great selection of Irish bars given our lack of Irish immigrants (think Boston, New York or Philly). My favorites are:
- Sir Edmund Halley’s
- Tyber Creek
A new favorite is Belfast Mill in Brevard Court, but you’re more likely to catch the crawl if you venture uptown. The Workman’s Friend in Plaza Midwood and Galway Hooker (who hosts Kegs & Eggs all day the 17th) in Cornelius are also great options for a pint.
Step 2: The Pie.
And now we depart to the land of the Leprechaun. My favorite Shepherd’s Pie can be found at Big Ben (they call it Cottage Pie). You can also find great pie at Peculiar Rabbit and sometimes Crepe Cellar gets festive and does Shepherd’s Pie or corned beef and cabbage. Speaking of which, if you like a good plate of CB&C 300 East is a great place to indulge.
Step 3: The After Party.
Just because you’re avoiding the crowds doesn’t mean you have to go home early! Here are a few ideas to round out your night, if you choose to celebrate on the 17th or wait until the weekend.
Thursday March 17th:
Saturday March 19th:
- St Patrick’s Day Dog Pawty at Dog Bar 1-4p Sat March 19th FREE
- Dives To Dining Plaza Midwood Food Tour 3p $55/perso
- The Rocket Summer at The Visulite (instrumentalist) 9p $15
If you’re more of the Netflix-and-chill-or-whatever type, may I recommend a few streaming options to keep you in the festive spirit?
- The Fall
- In Bruges
These will help you brush up on your brogue (Irish accent) while you sip a Tullamore D.E.W.
Finally, after that intro I feel I would be remiss if I didn’t mention that the Hornets take on Denver Saturday night. 7p tipoff, tickets start at $27.
Fire alarms possible, leprechauns probable.