St. Patrick’s Day is a holiday where everybody is Irish for the day, whether they have real Irish roots or not. The holiday brings out the best in parades, festivities and Irish fare and brew. Below are five of the best places you can go to paint the town green and celebrate St. Paddy’s Day in style.
1. Chicago, Illinois
Renowned for its St. Patrick’s Day festivities, the Windy City is a perfect destination to celebrate the holiday. Before Chicago begins its impressive parade, it dyes its river emerald green to commemorate the holiday. You can witness the dying of the river at 9:00 am. The parade starts at Grant Park at noon, boasting bagpipes galore and plenty of other Irish entertainment. Enjoy some Guinness or green beer at a local pub, along with some traditional Irish stew!
2. Boston, Massachusetts
Boston is the most Irish-American city according to statistics, and hosts the third largest parade in the country, drawing up to 1 million viewers. It’s held in South Boston, the most Irish part of the city. This year, the parade will be on Sunday, March 18th, but there are plenty of other ways to celebrate throughout the city over the weekend including concerts, a walk along the Irish Heritage Trail, or the Irish Film Festival in Somerville, MA.
3. New York, New York
Boasting of the largest St. Patrick’s Day parade, the Big Apple does it up big for St. Paddy’s Day. The parade route proceeds along Fifth Avenue, passing St. Patrick’s Cathedral along the way. You can also check out one of New York City’s Irish pubs, Irish restaurants, music, and dancing. Take a tour or watch a Celtic dance performance – the options are limitless.
4. Washington, D.C.
Known as the Nation’s St. Patrick’s Day parade, Washington D.C.’s parade includes bagpipes, marching bands, floats and more. Along with watching the impressive parade, you can enjoy the Shamrock festival, an all-day extravaganza that features over 50 Irish bands, dancers and other activities. Enjoy post-parade food and drink at one of many Irish establishments like Kelly’s Irish Times.
5. San Diego, California
San Diego does it up in warm weather style with its St. Patrick’s Day Parade and Irish Festival. The parade is the largest west of the Mississippi, and takes place in Balboa Park on Saturday, March 17th. There are food and craft booths, a beer garden, and entertainment stages. Continue your Irish celebrating in the Gas Lamp Quarter at one of its many restaurants or pubs.
St. Patrick’s Day weekend this year is not to be missed: choose one of these top cities for a parade and festivities, and get your green on!