'Kiss Me, I'm Contagious': Why A Michigan Bar Hosted A St. Patrick's Party

For the most part, you’re out of luck when it comes to St. Patrick’s Day celebrations this year.

But in Gaylord, the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic inspired a festive new t-shirt slogan: “kiss me, I’m contagious.”

Bar goers sported the phrase at the Iron Pig Smokehouse, a bar that violated COVID-19 guidelines last year and had its liquor license suspended. Rather than canceling parties this year, the bar hosted one at The Ellison Place on Saturday (March 13), hosting up to 300 people, mlive reported that day.

“We knew that there were people who want to get out and have a good time that feel comfortable doing so safely, so we figured we would partner with our friends over at Ellison,” Iron Pig Smokehouse owner Ian Murphy explained to the publication.

The two establishments teamed up and sought guidance from the health department to follow COVID-19 guidelines. That included capping the number of attendees, requiring masks and more, according to mlive.

“A lot of people are quick to be upset about the conclusion of ‘kiss me, I’m contagious’ about it having something to do with COVID,” Murphy explained to mlive about the COVID-inspired St. Patrick’s Day phrase. “Frankly, that’s not really the case... [The shirt means] I’m contagious because I’m Irish, I’m fun, we’re having a good time. Contagious is part of being the life of the party.”

“This is just an opportunity for us to step back, have a bit of a good time...,” Murphy continued. “Ultimately, it’s not trying to poke a stick in anybody’s eye about anything. We’re just ready to get back to normal and have a good time doing it.”

Photo: Getty Images

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