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!”