New York (CNN) –- New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg apologized Thursday for controversial comments he made about Irish people at an event hosted by the American Irish Historical Society.
Bloomberg said Wednesday evening at a book launch event celebrating the 250th anniversary of the St. Patrick's Day Parade that he is used to seeing "inebriated" Irish people hanging out of the windows at the center on St. Patrick’s Day, according to the society’s Executive Director Christopher Cahill.
Cahill added that it was the mayor's first time visiting the center and was offered the microphone to make some impromptu remarks.
"I was talking about a party that they have every year on St. Patrick’s Day where they sort of it's traditional to hang out the window and yell and scream and it's in good fun," Bloomberg said on Thursday at an event launching the City's first multimedia campaign to reduce truancy and chronic absenteeism in City schools. “I certainly didn't mean anything that anybody should take offense to.”
"It was intended in a jovial way," said Cahill. "Some people thought it was a joke that fell flat, other people took personal offense."
According to its website The American Irish Historical Society was founded in 1897 to inform the world of the achievements of the Irish in America and is a national center of scholarship and culture.