Irish celebration returns to Paddy and Irene’s amid a pandemic

Published: Mar. 19, 2021 at 12:24 AM PDT
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SPARKS, Nev. (KOLO) - The day where beer turns green is here. But for Paddy and Irene’s Irish Pub, St. Patrick’s Day brings back memories of the financial hit they suffered after celebrations last year were canceled.

Patrice Luciano, the business owner said exactly a year ago her business was shut down temporarily due to COVID-19. Adding, all her efforts and planning went down the drain, dropping her profits to zero.

“I was angry, I was sad, I didn’t know what was going to happen,” Luciano said. “I was scared because I thought maybe I was going to close, lots of businesses closed.”

This year at 50 percent capacity, Luciano said they are slowly getting back to how things used to be.

“I’m happy that we are able to continue the tradition that we do every year, which is our green beer, our Jello shots, our corn beef and cabbage that we did before,” Luciano said.

She said this St. Patrick’s Day may be the busiest they have been since the pandemic started. Aiming to hit at least $10,000 in profits and continue gaining what they have lost.

“It was unfortunate that it was pandemic, but also fortunate that it pushed us to a place we thought we would never meet,” explained Luciano.

Ruth Wheeler took this celebration as a chance to give back.

“We are big on local support and going into small businesses and supporting them at all times,” Wheeler said.

The pandemic is teaching Luciano a valuable lesson.

“It’s resilience, survival, and what do we have to do to keep our business open,” said Luciano.

She has taken this as a chance to reinvent the wheel for her pub. Luciano started a kitchen to add several food items to the menu to bring in extra revenue. The battle with COVID-19 is still ongoing. If you choose to celebrate as spring arrives remember your mask, as it’s still required to help stop the spread.

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