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“The heart of Ireland in the heart of The Strip!”

David Regan has worked for Mullaney’s Harp & Fiddle in the Strip District since it opened in 1992, and today as acting owner and manager, continues the tradition the founders started.

a man standing next to a bottle of wine“Anne Mullaney and her brother Brian [Mullaney] and Sean Murphy founded Harp & Fiddle,” says Regan. “Anne was as nice a person as you’ll ever meet. It was her dream to have this Irish pub. She wanted to make it a place where everyone would feel comfortable, especially women, to come in and not be harassed. It’s a very open, friendly, warm atmosphere and a lot of fun.”

There’s always something going on at Harp & Fiddle, whether it’s traditional Irish Celli dancing on Tuesdays or live music multiple nights a week. Since Regan has been with the restaurant for 30-plus years, he’s witnessed the evolution of the pub as well as its Strip District neighborhood, which has gone from tourist attraction to a livable community.

“If you went out on our back porch 10 years ago at 9 o’clock at night, you wouldn’t see one person on the street. Now because so many people live down here, there are more businesses around us, and there are people everywhere. It’s more of a walking neighborhood now. People are actually living here. When we opened 32 years ago, there were only 10 units down here, and now there are thousands.”

More residents means more business, with Harp & Fiddle seeing increased foot traffic.

a person holding a guitar on a stage“The fact that people live here now, they socialize more on the weekends. They don’t want to get in cars, so they stay in the neighborhood and walk around. And then a bunch of people come into the neighborhood because the Strip has always been a destination area on Saturdays and Sundays. It’s doubled the amount of people walking around, and we benefit because a lot of businesses around us might close early. They say rising water lifts all boats, so the more stuff down here, the better for everyone.”

March is the time of year when Harp & Fiddle really thrives with St. Patrick’s Day festivities, including the parade and the holiday itself.

“We open parade day at 8 a.m. for eggs before the parade. Then we have music from noon until 1 a.m., six different bands inside and out. The only thing different this year is that the holiday itself is Sunday, so we repeat it again the next day. Sunday will not be as crazy, but it’s a great day.”

a group of people sitting at a table

Steph Chambers/Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Regan describes the camaraderie of Strip District businesses as everyone getting along and helping each other where they can, working together to make it a safe and fun atmosphere.

“This [interview] is a perfect example. Promote everyone, not just yourself.”

Regan says the best part about working in the Strip District and for Harp & Fiddle is the same answer.

“Meeting all the new people that come in. If the Steelers are playing at home, we’ll have people from California, Mexico, or even Europe. They just come in because it’s a dream trip for them to be in the city for that. Getting to meet all the new people and seeing them enjoy themselves is what I love about working here.”

Mullaney’s Harp & Fiddle is located just 200 feet away from Bold Escape Rooms at 2329 Penn Avenue.  A perfect place to visit before or after your escape room adventures!