Hoboken St. Patty's Day crackdown

March 5, 2011 8:24:22 PM PST
With some Irish American flare, surprisingly warm temperatures and some bagpipes, the 25th annual St. Patrick's Day parade in Hoboken was off with a bang.

And for the thousands of people who came here to watch, it didn't disappoint.

But we all know this parade brings a lot more than just family fun.

The city threatened fines of up to $2,000 for anyone who couldn't contain themselves.

Last year was the first year the city's zero-tolerance policy kicked in at the parade. The goal: to stop revelers from really crossing the line, with things like public sex and urination.

Mayor Dawn Zimmer said, "It was a little bit out of control and it's coming back in the right direction. We welcome everyone to Hoboken, but we want everyone to act responsibly."

For Grand Marshal Bill Noonan it's all about history.

"This is a celebration of our heritage and those people who are doing the other things, they're not even here watching the parade so I don't worry about them," Noonan said.

There will be DWI checkpoints throughout the city Saturday and Sunday.

Officials are hoping steep fines will also keep the crowd under control.

Anyone caught with an open container of alcohol faces a fine of up to $2,000 and possible community service.

These are the four violations for which law enforcement will enforce a zero tolerance policy: consumption of alcohol/open container in public, urinating in public, maintaining a nuisance (disorderly and unsafe house parties), disorderly conduct and improper behavior.

Hoboken issued more than 500 summonses during the 2010 St. Patrick's Day, with more than 200 of those required to perform community service.

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