(SAVANNAH) St. Patrick’s Day revelers who want to drink alcohol in the festival zone will have to pony up twice as much this year. It’s one of a few changes adopted by city leaders as they officially adopt the resolution that sets the three-day festival into motion. Marty Johnston, deputy Assistant to the City Manager, says the price of wrist bands is moving from $5 dollars to $10. She says it’s a move driven by rising costs. “We’ve never raised the price for the wrist bands in the past, this will be our first time we’ve done it and over the years, expenses have increased like what amount of money bands get, how much it costs for staging, lights, sound, security, sanitation, all of those kinds of things, even on our part with the city.” said Johnston. The festival zone is unchanged from previous years.
Another change in store for St. Patrick’s Festival is an increased fee for buses bringing in visitors for the festival. Now those buses will pay $200. There is also a plan to bring in an economist for a closer look at the festival’s revenue streams. Johnston informed Mayor Eddie DeLoach and the city’s Aldermen that it’s not clear if the city makes money or loses money when it’s all said and done. Johnston says the adoption of the 2017 St. Patrick’s Day Resolution is the official kick-off of the festival, setting the dates and enacting the ordinances that regulate the festival. Savannah’s 2017 St. Patrick’s Day Festival will begin Thursday, March 16th and will wrap up on Saturday, March 18th. The big parade is set for Friday, March, 17.