MANCHESTER — City officials said they should have control of large numbers of people expected in downtown Manchester this weekend when long-distance runners, hockey players, reptile enthusiasts and marching Irishmen descend upon the Queen City.
City officials and police have issued traffic advisories involving several events the weekend of March 29-31 that may cause increased traffic and traffic delays in Manchester.
The Citizens Bank Shamrock Half Marathon, the Citizens Bank Shamrock Shuffle, the Reptile Expo at the Manchester Downtown Hotel, the NCAA Division 1 Men’s Hockey Regional Tournament and the annual Manchester St. Patrick’s Day Parade will all be held in the Queen City between Friday and Saturday. These events are expected to bring thousands of visitors to downtown Manchester, city officials said in a news release.
In 2017, a weekend of March madness overtook the downtown when the parade conflicted with a made-in-New-Hampshire expo, a college hockey tournament and the road races.
It led to traffic gridlock and complaints.
“The City of Manchester thanks all residents and visitors in advance for their caution and patience,” reads a release issued Monday by city officials.
Details on the busy schedule are as follows:
Friday, March 29
The 2019 NCAA Division I Men’s Hockey Northeast Regional Tournament semifinals will be held on Friday at SNHU Arena. The regional semifinals will include Massachusetts vs. Harvard at 3 p.m., and Clarkson vs. Notre Dame at 6:30 p.m.. Visit www.snhuarena.com for more information.
Saturday, March 30
The Millennium Running Shamrock Half Marathon will be held on Saturday from 9 a.m. until approximately 2 p.m. This event will begin and end at Veterans Park.
The Manchester Police Department and Millennium Running have secured course marshals to assist local residents on the course with navigation through road closures.
Elm Street from Pleasant Street and Central Street will be closed from Friday at 2 p.m. until the conclusion of the St. Patrick’s Day Parade on Sunday.
The race route for the Citizens Bank Shamrock Half Marathon has been adjusted to alleviate traffic issues.
With the new layout, Canal Street becomes unaffected and residents between Canal Street and Elm Street will be able to come and go from downtown Manchester via Canal Street, the Queen City Bridge, Granite Street and the Amoskeag Bridge. Residents of River Road should also see less impact from the event, police said.
The 2019 NCAA Division I Men’s Hockey Regional Final will also be held on Saturday at SNHU Arena at 6:30 p.m.
Sunday, March 31
The Citizens Bank Shamrock Shuffle will begin at 11:10 a.m., just before the Manchester Street Patrick’s Day Parade steps off.
The Shamrock Shuffle will cause several different road closures, detailed as follows:
Elm Street between Pleasant Street and W. Merrimack Street (midnight to noon)
Elm Street (North) between Pleasant Street and Central Street (midnight to noon)
Elm Street between Merrimack Street and W. Pennacook Street (11 a.m. to noon)
W. Pennacook Street between Elm Street and Canal Street (11 a.m. to noon)
Canal Street (North) between W. Pennacook Street and Spring Street (11 a.m. to 11:40 a.m.)
Spring Street between Canal Street and Elm Street (11 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.)
W. Bridge Street (East on Bridge) between McGregor Street and Elm Street (11 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.)
W. Bridge Street (East on Bridge) between McGregor Street and Elm Street (11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.) redirected to Canal St. via Plaza Drive
St. Patrick’s Day Parade
The Annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade will be held on Sunday from noon until approximately 2 p.m. The parade starts on Elm Street at Salmon Street and continues south along Elm Street to Veterans Park.
The St. Patrick’s Parade committee has announced that for only the second time in the history of the parade there are co-Grand Marshals. Ancient Order of Hibernians John Cashin and Ladies Ancient Order of Hibernians member Marilyn Cashin have been named as Grand Marshals for the 2019 parade.
The Reptile Expo will be held at the Manchester Downtown Hotel (the former Radisson) at 700 Elm St. on Sunday from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.
For more information about this event please visit www.reptileexpo.com/manchester-nh.html. Drivers are urged to use caution in all event areas. Drivers are also advised to use alternative routes to enter Manchester as delays are expected on I-293 exits 5 and 6.
More info regarding these events is available on the City of Manchester website www.manchesternh.gov, Nixle, and on social media.