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Hooley moley! Farrell’s barkeep takes Paddy’s Day off — to lead the Park Slope parade!

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Photo gallery

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Stick a pipe in it: The St. Patrick’s Day Parade was graced by the obligatory tooting of bagpipes.
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Little beauts: A troop of young lasses and lads in traditional Irish step garb joined in on the celebration.
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Green day: Gabriela and Isabel Amurao wore their best emerald-hued attire.
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Green machine: Everyone is Irish at Farrell’s Bar and Grill year-round, but on St. Patrick’s Day they’re extra Irish.
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Smashed: The scene at Farrell’s following the parade.
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Houlie!: James Houlihan, owner of Windsor Terrace watering hole Farrell’s Bar and Grill, served as Grand Marshal of the St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Park Slope.

It’s the luck of the Irish bar owner!

Farrell’s Bar owner and all around local legend Jim “Hooley” Houlihan served as the grand marshal of the St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Park Slope this year, earning the barkeep his first Paddy’s Day off from work in 14 years.

“I took the day off,” said Houlihan, who has worked at the bar for more than 50 years and owned it for more than 20. “No way was I going to work.”

The parade of green-clad column of pipers, step dancers, cop color guards, and marching bands did a loop of Prospect Park West, 15th Street, Seventh Avenue, and Garfield Place.

And ahead of them all was Hooley, driving along in style and waving to crowds of Irish-for-a-day revelers with his wife Eileen by his side.

“Where I go she goes,” said Houlihan, before dutifully adding, “she’s a great lady.”

Afterwards, Hooley and his pals went over to Holy Name Church for a corned-beef dinner, and then called it day, never even setting foot in his famed Windsor Terrace tavern

The same cannot be said for hundreds of others, who lined up outside the Budweiser emporium to get their hands on its signature “Farrellizer” drink — a 32-ounce beer in a Styrofoam cup.

The last time Houlihan got a day off on St. Patrick’s Day was when he served as the grand marshal’s aide back in 2003, when he carried a flag behind the parade’s main guy.

And as good as that was, there’s nothing better than riding shotgun for the best Irish celebration in town, he said.

“I had a great time,” said Houlihan. “The people were great, and everything was really beautiful. A wonderful day!”

Reach reporter Colin Mixson at cmixson@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260-4505.
Updated 10:17 pm, July 9, 2018
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