On March 17, the streets of Old Town will be a lot less green and a lot less crowded, as it has just been announced that the annual St. Patrick's Day parade will not be happening anymore. 

The parade has been a downtown tradition for years, but due to things like rising costs, safety issues, and crowd control, organizers with the DBA chose to pull the plug going forward. Besides the logistical factors, the DBA also mentioned the recent tragedy in Windsor, where a little boy was killed following an incident with a parade float, as something that influenced their decision.

While it's a bummer that there won't be a parade, Old Town will still be celebrating in style for St. Patrick's Day weekend. From 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on March 16, the Oak Street Shamrock Festival will offer live music and other activities in the Oak Street Plaza. The Shamrock Festival is alcohol-free, but on Sunday, revelers can make their way to the annual Old Town Irish Party, taking place from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the square. The Old Town Irish Party will still have live music and celebratory green beer.

Several other Old Town events were canceled in late 2018, including the Zombie Crawl and First Night on New Year's Eve.