Holyoke residents say ‘everyone’s Irish’ on St. Patrick’s weekend

While the weekend is about celebrating Irish heritage, you don't have to be Irish to celebrate

HOLYOKE, Mass. (WWLP) – It’s a big weekend for the city of Holyoke, with celebrations centered around celebrating the Irish heritage.

In a city where the demographic has changed over the decades, St. Patrick’s weekend has become equally about bringing the city together.

“Everybody is Irish on this weekend, everybody. There’s people that have come into Holyoke Sporting Goods where we’re selling things, and they are definitely not Irish, but they don’t care. They’re Irish today, they’re Irish tomorrow and they’re celebrating the heritage and the fun and the festivities,” said Carol Lesperance.

Residents told 22News that while the weekend is about celebrating the Irish heritage, you don’t have to be Irish to celebrate. It’s about bringing the city and people from all over western Massachusetts together.

“Everyone’s Irish on this day. The city of Holyoke on St. Patrick’s Day is like nothing. I bring strangers and they go ‘oh my gosh,’ they come from out of state, it’s fun it’s for everyone,” said Tammy Laraway.

“I think it’s cool to have everyone come together, everyone’s friends today, everyone you see on the street. Everyone’s strangers but we’re all together and everyone’s so friendly and nice. I grew up here too so it’s nice to come back and see old friends,” said Maddie Dirats.

Even homeowners along the parade route get into the spirit and decorate their homes for the occasion.

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