Green With Envy There’s no need to envy the Irish of their annual celebration. This St. Patrick’s Day, do more than just wear a scarf around your neck. Even though you might not have a single drop of Irish blood, those Irish descendants that live in the good old US would love to celebrate with you. You may have attended one of the huge celebrations in New York City or Boston, but you might have missed these other Saint Patty’s treasures. St. Patrick’s Day Parade—Savannah, Georgia Some would believe that the biggest St. Patrick’s Day parade belongs in Ireland, but last year Savannah, Georgia self-proclaimed their parade as one of the biggest in the world. According to the stats listed in the Deseret News, all hotels in the county were booked for the event. Not only that, but the amount of people in attendance generously exceeded one million. If you like a good parade with a traditional feel, this one has marching US military divisions, the Irish Air Corps Pipes and Drums, and some fantastic award-winning bands. The event highlights another Irish tradition: the parade is properly introduced with a mass at the Cathedral of Saint John the Baptist. Planning to attend? St. Patrick’s Day falls on a Sunday this year—but don’t show up for the parade on that day—this year it will be the day before in order to draw a large Saturday crowd. http://www.savannahsaintpatricksday.com/ Mulleady’s Irish Pub and Restaurant—Seattle, Washington For the more sophisticated crowd, a night at Mulleady’s is a perfect St. Patrick’s Day fit. To accommodate those who are not interested in having this holiday be a rowdy one, the restaurant
is serving a fancy six-course meal on the day of celebration. The famously Irish house-cured corned beef and cider-braised cabbage will not be excluded from the meal, of course. Along with the fine cuisine comes live Irish music to celebrate Irish tradition. Show up early or make reservations; the night will be a popular one without the drunks stereotypical of some pubs. Mulleady’s is a prestigious venue with a good reputation, and you will not be disappointed. http://www.mulleadyspub.com/ Annual Smilin’ Irishman Contest—San Diego, California In San Diego, the parade master is called a “Smilin’ Irishman.” He acquires this title in a contest held a couple of months before the big St. Patrick’s Day celebration. To win the competition, he has to prove the legitimacy of his Irish blood by outcompeting the other lads in several challenges. A couple of those include identifying different kinds of Irish whiskey (without peeking), and telling a good Irish joke. The Irishman who wins is in charge of the St. Patrick’s Day Parade that year, along with any other Irish traditional event that goes on within the upcoming twelve months. In addition, he wins a hat and a Blackthorn Walking Stick, which is a fashionable walking stick used by any true Irish gentleman. http://www.stpatsparade.org/ The Green Chicago River—Chicago, Illinois Considering dying your hair green for Saint Patty’s this year? Every year in Illinois, a different kind of dying goes on: The local Chicago Plumbers Union sponsors dying the entire Chicago River green. About 40,000 people attend the actual dying process, but throughout the day many more come to survey how beautifully green the river looks. Curious how they get the river such a
brilliant green color without killing the environment? When the Plumbers Union heard the motto “Go Green,” they took it to a whole new level. The dye is a specially formulated vegetable-based dye that does no damage to the river and its living occupants. So, if you have been extra conscious about your recycling this year, reward yourself and “go green” with Chicago. http://greenchicagoriver.com/ Fun Family Festivity—Dublin, Texas As the Irish capital of the lone star state, it’s safe to expect a lot from Dublin, Texas—and they certainly go the extra mile to make St. Patrick’s Day a fun one for families. The new executive director Brad Stanford said about the celebration, “We have been very conscious of the need for whole families to be entertained together, rather than having to go their separate ways to enjoy anything. We try very hard to make our event truly fun for every family.” Which means they have a whole variety of great things to do. For those into Celtic sports, Dublin puts on officially sanctioned Highland Games where the competitors where kilts. For canine lovers there is a dog show, and last year Dublin had more than one hundred entries. That’s not all! The event also includes a road rally, a parade, several contests, petting zoos, games, a roller derby, laser tag, carnival rides, and much more. Lucky for you, these Irish supporting Texans are more than happy to share their festivities with you! http://www.dublintxchamber.com/st_pat_info.htm
A Little Luck O’ the Irish in Your Own Home If you can’t travel elsewhere this Saint Patrick’s Day, but you still want to join in the celebration, start some of your own traditions. No time for green eggs or pancakes? Not to worry. Pour
yourself a bowl of Lucky Charms® with green milk, and perhaps a leprechaun will join you for breakfast. Try being a friendly leprechaun and fill your friends’ and family’s shoes with gold . . . or goodies. Look in a clover patch for a four-leafed clover and press it in a book. Decorate someone’s door with a bunch of paper four-leafed clovers you made. Eat a meal of corned beef and cabbage (see below for a recipe link). Learn an Irish drinking song. Or better yet, make a whole playlist of Irish music to play throughout the day (Pandora’s playlist “Irish Traditional” makes a great radio station). Need some Irish attire? Hit up thrift stores, or find an old T-Shirt and write in green marker, “Kiss Me, I’m not Irish.” Whatever fun you choose, you don’t have to travel to have the Saint Patty’s holiday spirit! http://www.simplyrecipes.com/recipes/corned_beef_and_cabbage/
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