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Guiness Toast at McGirk's

The Irish and wannabe Irish are preparing to toast the beginning of the Saint Patrick's Day season.
The Irish and wannabe Irish are preparing to toast the beginning of the Saint Patrick's Day season. The annual Guinness Toast takes place Friday night.

The tour started at McGirk's Irish Pub in Chenango Bridge this afternoon and will stop at 15 bars in the course of 9 hours. Leading the tour is the Broome County Celtic Pipe and Drum band. They'll perform at each location and, of course, raise a pint of Guinness. Tim Ward is a member of the pipe band and co-owner of McGirk's where the tour ends at midnight.

"It's nuts some of the bars you go in, especially like tonight. When we have a band in here you can barely hear the pipes people are screaming so loud. It's difficult for us to even get in this place," said Ward.

Local beer distributor A.L. George sponsors the bus that carries the band and local dignitaries. Along the way, thousands of dollars of donations, matched by Guinness, are collected for the Chester B. Lord School for the Disabled in Binghamton. To find out where they'll be stopping tonight, visit McGirksirishpub.com.
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