State Patty’s Day Brings Mixed Emotions for Locals
STATE COLLEGE, Pa. – State College braced itself for a wild weekend as the State Patty’s holiday was celebrated on Saturday. The Penn State traditional alternative to Saint Patrick’s Day was started in 2007 by a group of students upset about missing the Irish tradition while away on spring break.
The tradition has continued since then, with local bars and shops seeing a boost in sales at what is otherwise a quiet time for business. Mark Farrell, the supply buyer for a major downtown State College store, knows better than most about how business is this time of year.
“It’s slow,” he said. “I mean the whole last part of February and early part of March is a slow time.”
Not all State College residents enjoy the holiday, however. State College has seen a spike in crime across the board each and every State Patty’s holiday.
The police bring in additional support from surrounding counties just to handle the chaos that comes every year. There were 234 arrests on State Patty’s Day in 2011 alone, according to Onward State.
The boosts in business come with boosts in crime, leaving some with mixed thoughts about State Patty’s. Penn State senior Hannah Cerutti thinks there are both positives and negatives of the annual party day.
“I think it’s definitely beneficial to the economy of the community because more visitors, more people buying drinks, more people are going out,” Cerutti said. “I do worry more than normal because of the safety. I’m not sure it's beneficial.”
Whether the upticks in crime and increased sense of danger for some are worth it to the borough’s business is a question that nobody can answer for sure.
Brannon DeWolf is a junior majoring in broadcast journalism. To contact him, email firstname.lastname@example.org.