Boston’s 2021 St. Patrick's Day Parade Again Canceled

Photo from 2019 St Pat's parade in South Boston. The festive late winter event now has been cancelled for two succesive years due to the COVID-19 pandemic

By Colin A. Young 

State House News Service

For the second year in a row, the coronavirus has canceled the St. Patrick's Day parade through South Boston. 

"Due to ongoing state restrictions limiting outdoor public events to 25 people, the 2021 South Boston St. Patrick's Day / Evacuation Day Parade has been canceled," the South Boston Allied War Veterans Council, which organizes the parade, said on Twitter on Tuesday morning. "We look forward to finally seeing you all again in 2022." 

Last March, Boston Mayor Martin Walsh canceled the St. Patrick's Day parade less than a week out when the number of coronavirus cases in Massachusetts was 41, including nine in Boston. 

"The best way of trying to prevent the spread of it is by not having large groups of people together, particularly that there's no way to kind of watch what's going on there," Walsh said on WEEI's Greg Hill Show last March. "So, we have a parade and you have 1.1 million people coming into a neighborhood that it's very easy, potentially, to spread the virus and it's pretty dangerous." The cancelation came as Walsh, Gov. Charlie Baker and other officials were still trying to get a grasp on exactly what the effect of the virus would be. Three days before Walsh canceled the 2020 parade, he had cautioned against making "rash judgment decisions" when asked about potentially canceling the parade and the 2020 Boston Marathon. Baker had left Massachusetts to go on vacation with his family in Utah, but returned from the trip early and declared a state of emergency before St. Patrick's Day.