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St Patrick's Day in Portland

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New York
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St Patrick's Day in Portland

Hi there

We are headed up to Portland for a quick trip over St Patrick's Day weekend.

Our first day is short and we are going to go to allagash for a tour and have dinner at fore st

My questions are regarding St Patrick's Day, proper

1. Some research suggests (but I can't seem to confirm) that there is a St Patricks Day parade in Portland. Is this true and is this a pretty crazy/busy parade?

2. It looks like Ri Ra and Bull Feeny's are celebrating St Patricks - are these good ideas? Is one preferable? Is it worth attempting a reservation?

3. I also read about a boat tour on Casco Boats, with some music. We are mid 30's couple getting away from our wonderful 3 year old for a couple of days - I can't tell what demographic is being targeted with the boat tour - does anyone have a sense of this?

4. Any other recommendations for the weekend? It seems like Portland a lot is slower in the winter months (which is lovely!) so just seeking out recs... nearby hikes, etc. We are going to go to a spa, but just for an hour. We are leaving on the early side, Sunday, so not a lot of time. And would prefer not to spend too much time driving while we are there.

Thanks so much!

kbwr

Southern Maine
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1. Re: St Patrick's Day in Portland

This site has some info on the parade:

www.maine.info/events/festivals/march.php

I couldn't find anything about a boat tour for this year. Do you have a link?

RiRa's is about as Irish as it gets. :-)

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2. Re: St Patrick's Day in Portland

Thanks!

here is a link about the boat cruise

http://www.mainetoday.com/stpats2011.html

RiRa sounds good, then! :)

Do you have have a sense of the general Portland scene on that day - should we anticipate it being pretty crazy or just sort of medium crazy? :) We live in NYC so we do actually like to get away from the madness, as well!

Southern Maine
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3. Re: St Patrick's Day in Portland

That link for the boat cruise is from 2011. I haven't found one for this year and that band is elsewhere.

As you can tell, the Irish pubs start early (there's also Brian Boru). I don't think Portland would match NYC crazy, but they'll definitely give it a try! :-)

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4. Re: St Patrick's Day in Portland

oops! glad you caught you that - thanks! That sounds good :)

any other recs for the area? appreciate it!

Mid Coast Maine...
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5. Re: St Patrick's Day in Portland

Portland is CRAZY on St. Patrick's day. More so at night. Most of the action will be in the Old Port, so if you want a quiets night sleep I would suggest you book a hotel NOT in the Old Port.

The bars are open at about 7AM for "breakfast" and I also believe RiRa's sponsors a dip in the chilly ocean. I doubt they take reservations for that day, but they do on other days. Quite a festive atmosphere.

I use to live in NYC and worked on Fifth Avenue, so I heard bag pipes from 11AM until 3PM. It's not that crazy here. You should be sure to check out some of the restaurants, other than the Irish ones, in Portland. The food scene here is amazing! Skip the corned beef though....it's much better in NY.

In case you want to try something a little different, there's a boat show Friday-Sunday at Portland Yacht Services (on the water front). It's fun to see all the cool boats built in Maine (and New England) and talk with some of the builders. http://www.portlandcompany.com/boatShow/

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6. Re: St Patrick's Day in Portland

Oh great - thanks!

We are staying at the Danforth... I guess that might be near the Old Port? In which case - guess we will just stay out and celebrate St Paddy's day with everyone!

We are eating at Fore Street on Friday night, so I think that will be good.

Any recs for seafood lunch on Saturday? I know lobster is out season (i'm a MA girl at heart) but would love some seafood if we could find any!

Thanks!

Mid Coast Maine...
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7. Re: St Patrick's Day in Portland

GREAT choice of Fore Street! It is one of my very favorites. They also own another place, which is all seafood called Street and Company http://www.streetandcompany.net/ They are not open for lunch, but if you have another dinner available, do go here.

Another one of my favorites, completely casual, but yummy no frills food is J's Oyster Bar http://www.jsoyster.com/ It's located right on the water in the Old Port. Have a couple of beers, a bucket of steamers and a bowl of chowder.

Just so you know, lobster is never out of season in Maine. They fish year round here, although many pull their traps in the winter due to the nasty weather and rough seas. Now we're getting the hard shell lobsters (which I personally prefer) compared to the soft shell ones in the summer. So, if you're yearning to have a fresh Maine lobster, go for it! Also, shrimp season just ended. These are very small and very sweet shrimp. By mid March you won't be able to get any fresh, but if you do see them on the menu, order them. If you like oysters, you can also get them fresh at usually any restaurant. They come from all over the state. The ones close to where I live are Pemaquid Oysters.

8. Re: St Patrick's Day in Portland

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