Sunday, March 18, 2007

A Family Affair

Ron and Debbie stood near the wall in Madison’s about 9 p.m. Saturday watching UNC take on Michigan State and soaking up the atmosphere. They proudly wore their Rich & Bennett St. Patrick’s Day bar crawl T-shirts. It was their first time, and maybe Debbie’s last, on the crawl that drew more than 2,300 people uptown.

Organizers say it could be the largest crawl in the U.S. ever and the second largest in the world. By 9 p.m. most of the crawlers dispersed to bars throughout uptown, but they had a day full of memories. Mayor Pat McCrory toasted off the crawl at Dixie’s at 1 p.m. Then he posed for pictures with crawlers for more than an hour. As Paid to Party scout Throw Some D’s said, the bar crawl toast was McCrory’s Bill Clinton saxophone moment.

Friends of Ron and Debbie took pictures with McCrory. The older couple came up from Rock Hill to participate in the crawl with their daughter and son. Ron sounded hopeful that he’d return next year, but Debbie sounded tired.

Who wouldn’t be? They started the crawl at 1 p.m. That’s a lot of Guinness.