SAVANNAH, Ga. (WTGS FOX 28) — With fewer than 50 days until St. Patrick's Day rolls into the Hostess City, preparations are ramping up.
This year, the city will be cracking down on certain behavior.
"We have these people who linger for hours and hours and just continue to drink and continue to litter," said Susan Broker, director of special events, film and tourism.
There will be a major focus on Chippewa Square.
“Even though we have some unwanted behaviors, we also have some families that come to Chippewa Square and have for 50, 60 years," said Broker.
They city is looking to make the square more family friendly.
“The reason we focus on it in Chippewa is the behaviors that have come out of Chippewa are coming to the point of being far worse than they are in other parts of the city," said Sgt. Jason Pagliaro with the Savannah Police Department.
One of the bigger changes being looked at this year is closing off one-third of Chippewa Square. The square would be closed from the back end of the statue to East Hull Street.
“Over there, you’re not watching the parade, so there’s no reason for anyone to even be in there. So that saves almost half our square from being trashed,"said Pagliaro.
In addition to cracking down on litter, law enforcement will be keeping an eye on underage drinking in the area.
“That means the people who are selling the wristbands need to be very clear; That means the bartenders who are serving inside the bars need to be sure of those wristbands," said Broker.
Those wearing wristbands are going to want to make sure they're allowed to have them since the city is exploring the possibility of a recorder's court on-site to quickly process arrests.
All of this is an effort to keep the day fun and safe for all.
Even though St. Patrick's Day falls on Sunday this year, the parade will be held on Saturday, March 16.