From St. Patrick’s Day to back-to-back hockey: Sea of green brings booming business to St. Paul

[anvplayer video=”5168434″ station=”998122″]

From the iconic St. Patrick’s Day Parade and other Friday festivities to a sea of green jerseys and bumper-to-bumper traffic on Saturday, West 7th Street in St. Paul is at its peak this weekend.

Ask anyone who was not a Boston Bruins fan Saturday what brought them out in negative wind chills, and they say, they’re “here for the Wild, obviously.” A pack of fans headed into the Xcel Energy Center just before the Minnesota Wild’s 1:00 p.m. puck drop laughed after the question in unison response before adding, “but we’re also here for St. Patty’s day.”

Down the street, business was booming at Tom Reid’s Hockey City Pub. It’s a fan tradition when the Wild play at home.

“You know what, it is,” season ticket holder Nikki Schmidt said. “We usually stop at this one if we can get in. It’s usually super packed.”

“This is like our Christmas,” general manager Kathy Gositer added Saturday. “This is our busiest month of the year.”

Gositer said she and her staff look forward to the rush on this weekend in particular. She guessed thousands came through the door Friday alone.

“They came, they went, some stayed. But they hit everything on 7th street,” Gositer added.

Saturday began the same way with some left-over St. Patrick’s Day crowds, two Wild games and the Xcel Energy Center reopening again that night for the NCHC Frozen Faceoff.

“We’re all running on 4-5 hours of sleep, some less, and we’re going to come back tomorrow morning at 10:00 and we’re going to do it all over again for the Minnesota Wild at 1:00,” Gositer said.