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Celebrating St. Patrick's Day - the legends behind the man

Happy St. Patrick's Day!
Happy St. Patrick's Day!
Photo by LadyDragonflyCC at

St. Patrick’s Day - a day of frolick and fun, a day for the wee leprechauns to come out of hiding and make mischief before darting back into the shadows of invisibility. Why do people in the U.S. love St. Patrick’s Day so much? It’s not America’s holiday. Is it because many Americans are descended from immigrated Irish? Or is it merely because it’s as good an excuse as any for people to wear green, get drunk, and act like complete fools? Well, not the kids obviously, but although they may not get to drink, they get to pinch their friends who aren’t wearing green.

Because St. Paddy’s Day came on Hump Day this year, Fort Collins held their Lucky Joe’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade the weekend before on Saturday, March 13th, 2010. Hosted by (of course) Lucky Joe’s, the parade started at 10am on Walnut Ave. Fun was had by all there, and perhaps the morning was chilly for some because some were seen to be warming their hearts and bodies with a lovely green pint of Irish ale…unless it was Guinness in which case it remained black.

Like all good celebrations, there’s a story connected to this day’s patron. St. Patrick was from a Roman-Britain family and a Christian one at that. As a child he was kidnapped and taken to Ireland where he lived for six years until he could escape back to his family. When he grew into adulthood, he became a bishop and traveled back to Ireland as a missionary.

Legend has it that St. Patrick chased all the snakes out of Ireland which is why there are no snakes there today. It’s also said that he used the shamrock to teach the inhabitants of the Trinity since there are three leaves on the shamrock and likewise three parts to the Trinity. A third legend surrounding St. Patrick is that he carried a walking stick made of ash with him and when he reached Aspatria he thrust the stick into the ground. It took so long for the people there to understand and believe his teachings that by the time he was ready to leave, his walking stick had taken root where he had originally jammed it into the ground.