Throwback: Irish and non-Irish alike celebrate St. Patrick’s Day at McShane’s Lounge

McShane's St. Patrick's Day
Posted at 5:30 AM, Mar 14, 2024
and last updated 2024-03-14 05:30:02-04

INDIANAPOLIS — Irish or not, McShane’s Lounge was the place to be every St. Patrick’s Day in Indianapolis for decades.

The east side establishment was owned by Tom McShane, who was known throughout the community as the "Mayor of the East Side Irish.”

Patrons flocked to McShane’s at the corner of Emerson and E. Michigan to enjoy the traditional corned beef and cabbage, Irish music, step dancing, and of course, green beer.

WRTV reporter Barbara Boyd embraced the festivities by participating in a jig of her own in 1980. Boyd cheekily changed her own name to "Barbara O’Boyd" for the special occasion.

A crowd of 6,000 was expected to pass through McShane’s in 1980.

Tom McShane retired in 1986 and McShane’s eventually found new ownership. However, the luck of the Irish would eventually dwindle.

McShane’s Lounge closed in the early 2000s following a series of deadly shootings.