Champaign, U of I officials prepare of Unofficial St. Patrick's Day celebrations

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CHAMPAIGN - University of Illinois and Champaign officials say they hope to contain Unofficial St. Patrick's Day issues by following a similar plan to the one they used last year.

Unofficial St. Patrick's Day is celebrated by many University of Illinois students each year, and was created in 1996 by a bar owner because St. Patrick's Day fell during spring break.  Officials say students attend parties and drink throughout the event.

According to Champaign's Mayor Don Gerard, an emergency order that would limit bar hours during the celebration will likely be used again.  City police will also be able to work extra hours that day, due to a federal grant.

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