Cleveland police plan to keep big crowds safe at St. Patrick's Day Parade, what you need to know

CLEVELAND -

Warm Saint Patrick's Day parades in Cleveland can draw nearly 500,000 people. But even cold Saint Patrick’s Day parades draw 300,000. So, Cleveland police have to prepare for any situation.

Police will watch the parade from dozens of surveillance cameras in downtown with an emphasis on Public Square.

Police and troopers will monitor the crowd from roof tops, or what police call skywatch towers.

Members of swat, FBI and the bomb squad will be on crowd patrol.

Social media will also be monitored from the emergency operations center.

Police will look for drunk drivers and RTA will have extra workers on the company’s busiest day of the year.

The parade steps off Monday at 1:04 p.m. from 18th Street and Superior Avenue.

Backpacks are discouraged but allowed.

Tower City closes at 2 p.m. Monday, but RTA will stay open at the Tower City stop.

Parking will be in high demand downtown.

One official said "the pit" across from FirstEnergy stadium on West 3rd Street might be your best bet.

Bishop Lennon will hold Saint Patrick's Day mass at 10 a.m Monday at Saint John’s Cathedral in downtown.

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