By Susan-Elizabeth Littlefield

ST. PAUL, Minn. (WCCO) — It’s been a record-breaking week in St. Paul. Local businesses have seen a huge influx in traffic, partly because of high school hockey.

Typically in the Seventh Street area, the high school boys hockey tournament is the busiest week of the year.  This year, they’ve also got back to back St. Patrick’s Day celebrations and a major concert, too.

MSHSL reports 107,674 came out to watch high school boys skate for state. For the 2 A title game alone, 18,914.

But the fans aren’t the only ones cheering.

Kevin Giesen is the manager of Eagle Street Tavern.

“Record-breaking it seems like almost every year with the boys high school hockey,” Giesen said.

His restaurant is a stone’s throw from the X and Monday night another big event, acrobatic and acclaimed singer Pink will perform. Giesen expects another solid crowd.

“That is our life here at Eagle Street during the month of March, it is all work and a lot of play, but, you know, we focus,” he said.

And that’s just part of it. Yearly festival LuckyPalooza filled the streets again Saturday.  Anders Jorgenson was there celebrating.

“The whole street was packed, everything was blocked off, there were BMX bikers doing back flips,” Jorgenson said.

He spent the day in Tom Reid’s, a place that was abuzz the entire week. David Peters is a manager at Tom Reid’s Hockey City Pub.

“You’re on your feet for 18-20 hours, your legs are letting you know the next day that they’re there,” Petes said.

But there’s an upside to the hustle, he notes.

“Business has been really, really good. We’ve enjoyed having a lot of people down to check out the neighborhood and to see kind of what we have to offer,” he said.

And the annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade celebration hasn’t even begun. That’s next weekend and the big day happens to fall on Saturday.

And even the neighbors tell us, they feel pretty lucky. Ken Kelly and his wife Helen Thompson are St. Paul residents.

“The more the merrier,” Kelly said.

And more adventure is to come here in St. Paul. They will have the frozen face off so some college hockey here in St. Paul and then they’ll have another St. Patrick’s Day celebration. So the fun has only just begun in downtown St. Paul.


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