MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Large crowds are expected at pubs across the Twin Cities to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day this weekend. Festivities are expected to start as early Friday evening and last through Sunday night and into Monday.

In Uptown, owners of Morrissey’s Irish Pub, the area’s first Irish pub west of Lake and Lyndale received their liquor license on Thursday afternoon.

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Co-owner Scott Schuler says shortly after they got the license they put up their pub’s sign and opened the front door.

“It was down to the wire,” Schuler said. “Things take their own course, they take time. It worked out well. We’re here and that’s all we care about.”

The bar is owned by four friends, and two are from Ireland. They gutted what used to be Restaurant Miami, before it went out of business.

Schuler says their new pub will focus on whiskey — they plan to have whiskey tastings and offer whiskey flights. Morrissey’s chefs will also make dishes using whiskey.

“We make a lot of typical pub fare but done with an Uptown twist,” Schuler said. “We got a few healthy dishes, some gluten free.”

The pub’s name Morrissey comes from co-owner Paul Crilly’s grandfather. He says back in the 1920s, his grandfather was a commander in the Irish Republican Army and at one point he became a target. He used the alias Johnny Morrissey while on the run.

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“It saved his bacon a couple of times,” Crilly said.

The bar is opening just in time for St. Patrick’s Day and they’ll be competing with other established pubs like Kieran’s, O’Donovan’s, Keegan’s and The Local.

At Kieran’s Irish Pub they’ve set up a massive tent that fits 400 people for St. Patrick’s Day weekend. The tent is heated with a dance floor and DJ booth.

“We’ll have a DJ with a projector that will actually project some of the music videos of the songs he’ll be playing on the roof of the tent,” said Craig Wait, Kieran’s General Manger.

At The Local Pub in downtown Minneapolis, it expects every set to be filled over the weekend.

“We can do anywhere from one to two weeks of business in one day,” said General Manager Josh Petzel.

Metro Transit will also offer free rides Saturday from 6 p.m. until the last scheduled stop. If you plan to ride, make sure you take a warm coat. This weekend’s forecast is calling for temps in the high 20s. Last year’s St. Patrick’s Day forecast was 77 and sunny.

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“It’s warm in the pubs,” said Kieran’s manager Craig Wait.