A very happy St. Patrick’s Day for a local bar

For the first time since 2019, many people who love St. Patrick’s Day are getting to celebrate it in a more normal fashion. And that really helps out a bar owner in the D.C. area.

Greg Whelan, the owner of McGinty’s Public House in Silver Spring, said it’s been a tough few years financially, so being able to be open this St Patrick’s day is huge.

But there’s more to it than the money.

“Obviously, the financial end is there, but just being able to celebrate your culture — really, you know, most Irish bars are owned by Irish people,” Whelan said.

He added that his customers have been supportive and are excited that this year is more normal: “My phone’s been dinging away here all morning — everyone wishing us happy St. Patrick’s Day and good luck for the day.”

Even though the celebration this year will be more normal, it was still hard to make decisions about how big to go. When Whelan was making decisions about Thursday’s party, it was January, and the omicron variant of the coronavirus was gripping the area.

”It was hard to see that far ahead … so we did err a little bit on the side of caution,” Whelan said. Even so, McGinty’s will feature traditional Irish dancing and have a DJ along with, of course, Irish beers and other drinks.

Kyle Cooper

Anchor and reporter Kyle Cooper, has been with WTOP since 1992. Over those 25 years Kyle has worked as a street reporter, editor and anchor. Prior to WTOP Kyle worked at several radio stations in Indiana, and at the Indianapolis Star Newspaper.

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