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Shamrocks and bagpipes hit Main Street

Do you have your green outfit prepared? St. Patrick's Day is on Monday and Alhambra will be celebrating with Main Street's fifth annual St. Paddy's Day Pub Crawl. Hosted by the Downtown Alhambra Business Association, the bar hopping event will start at 6:30 p.m. on Monday at the Renaissance Theater on Garfield Avenue and Main Street. 

Nasrin Aboulhosn attended the event in 2011 and kept a diary of her shamrock-filled good time. Check it out below. Here's to a fun — and safe! — St. Patrick's Day!

When I heard that the Downtown Alhambra Business Association was organizing a St. Patrick’s Day pub crawl led by a bagpipe player, it just sounded too fun not to join. Armed with my camera and low alcohol tolerance, I followed my fellow Alhambra residents down Main Street for a shamrock celebration.

6:46 p.m. – Pub crawlers decked in green are waiting at the Renaissance Theater for the walk to begin. The bagpipe player is already playing tunes for dancing babies, which makes me think that kids are starting to party way too young these days. There are about 25 people, more than I’d expected. Joanna Vargas, the president of the Downtown Alhambra Business Association, is organizing the walk with her dancer’s energy and passes out beaded necklaces and clover buttons while we wait.

And we're off!

6:52 – We’re off! We follow the bagpipe player, who leads us across the intersection and over to 38 Degrees.

6:57 – Diners in 38 Degrees are confused when the bagpipe player storms into the sports bar with a big crowd not too far behind. I would imagine that bagpipes and the UCLA basketball game don’t go well together. But others ask what we’re doing and decide to join!

7:06 – We’re told we’ll be here for 30 minutes. I better get to my first drink!

7:15 – Oh boy. I should have eaten lunch, this drink is already hitting me!

7:21 – On to the next stop: Havana House. It’s not as crowded as 38 Degrees. We’re disappointed we can’t find green beer. My friend orders a Guinness (“Guinness is Irish, right?”). We’re all getting friendlier now, introducing ourselves and dancing in a group.

7:38 – People are starting to lean on one another. There’s a shamrock on the ground, and one tipsy lady taps on my shoulder, points to the ground, laughs, and walks away. Okay.

7:56 – We’re off! Azul next!

8:00 – No one is in Azul, so we take the party around the corner to Shakas! The bagpipe player drops us off and continues to play up and down Main Street. Now that’s spirit.

8:13 – Newcastle. A toast to St. Patrick!

8:28 – On to the next place! Trying to get other people to join us!

8:32 – Dancing on the La Frontera roof, our last stop.

8:41 – The bagpipe player is playing the Mexican Hat Dance. I’m confused.

9:00 – People are writing on people’s shirts…things are getting weird.

9:04 – Joanna’s making the rounds and dancing with the crowd, which is now double the size it was at the Renaissance. She just made my friend “get low and pop it!”

9:17 – Teach me how to dougie, teach me, teach me how to dougie! No really, teach me. I don’t know how.

9:25 – Someone puts his hand up so I give him a high five. Turns out his friend behind me was just passing him a drink. Oops!

10:28 – Ending the night early at In-n-Out but my Alhambra friends are still dancing the night away! I had a great time! 

Editor's Note: A version of this story was originally published on 03.23.2011.

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