This weekend is the time when everyone claims they are Irish, no matter what their true heritage or background. There are literally thousands of St. Patrick’s Day celebrations on tap across the globe. You will find organized and disorganized activities just about anywhere, but some cities go all out to show their color and there is ample opportunity for the wearin o’ the green.
Below is a list of some of the parades and some information about them.
Dublin, Ireland –
It’s not just a parade; it’s a whole festival in the land where St. Patrick is revered for bringing Christianity to its people. The festival starts Thursday, March 14th and runs through Monday the 18th. In honor of next year's Gathering (where people of Irish Heritage come home), 8,000 people from around the world will be marching in the parade. The colorful procession kicks off at noon at Parnell Square North before winding through the city center. This year’s theme is ‘The Sky is the limit.”
Take note that this year, the Atlanta parade is held at noon on Saturday, March 16th. (That gives you time to head to Savannah afterwards!) It takes over the downtown area and Peachtree Street. Started in 1858, Atlanta's St. Patrick's Day was attributed to by Father Thomas O'Reilly. Reilly is also credited with keeping the city's churches from being destroyed by threatening to excommunicate Union soldiers during the Civil War. http://stpatsparadeatlanta.com
A weekend of celebrations are taking place all across the city.
Savannah’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade is generally considered the best attended in the U.S. The whole city gets caught up in the party that surrounds it and since it's taking place on a weekend this year, expect a huge celebration. This is the 189th year for the events. The parade starts at 10:15am and travels up Abercorn through the heart of the historic district. It cuts east on Broughton and then back to Bay Street, back down Bull Street, ending at Charlton. Afterwards, everyone adjourns to party on River Street.
New York City –
First started in 1762, New York claims it's parade is "The oldest, biggest and best in the world!" (a claims Boston readily disputes)The Parade kicks off at 11am at 44th Street. The route takes it up Fifth Avenue past St. Patrick's Cathedral at 50th Street all the way up past the American Irish Historical Society at 83rd and the Metropolitan Museum of Art at 83rd Street to 86th Street. The parade doesn’t finish until 4:30 - 5:00 pm.
If you're in New York and want to spend time with good old fashioned Irish celebrations minus drunken revelers, check out Sober St. Patrick's Day for 3 p.m.- 6 p.m. and St. Regis High school 60 East 85th Street.
South Boston also claims to be the largest and oldest in the U.S.. Legend has it on March 17th, 1776, orders were given that if you wish to pass through the continental lines, the password was "St. Patrick". The British had seen all the cannons on the Heights and left Boston. Sponsored by the Allied War veteran's Council, the parade starts at 1 p.m., traveling along West Broadway to East Broadway and doubling back on 4th before ending along Dorchester..
You can start here and zip to another celebration the following day because Chicago is also celebrating St. Paddy's on March 16th. The Chicago festivities were first held in 1843 and is noted because in the Chicago River is colored green for the occasion. The dyeing takes place at 10:30 a.m. on Saturday, March 16th, followed by the parade at noon.
The National Mall area turns green on Sunday for the St. Patrick's Day parade in the nation's capital. The procession starts at noon and runs along Constitution Avenue from 7th to 17th Streets, N.W. The 2013 theme is ‘Celebrating Service to the Stars and Stripes”.
Los Angeles –
The City of Angels St. Patrick's Day is accompanied by a massive Beer and Wine Festival. As for the parade, it starts at 11:30 near Union Station near El Pueblo de Los Angeles on Olvera Street. It begins at Main Street and Arcadia Street, traveling south on Main Street to pass City Hall. The parade continues south on Main Street to 5th Street, where it will turn west to end at Hill Street, near Pershing Square.
London, Great Britain -
Trafalgar Square is the place to be for London's celebration. There will be a food market and stages for music and comedy following the parade which leaves Piccadilly at noon and follows a route along; lower Regents Street, Pall Mall and finishes in Trafalgar..
Montreal, Canada -
With the first parade starting in 1824, Montreal holds claim to having the longest running St. Patrick’s Day Parade in all of Canada. A huge replica of St. Patrick himself leads the parade which starts at noon at Fort and Ste. Catherine Street and includes floats, bands, community and cultural groups.
Tokyo, Japan -
Believe it or not, there is a St. Patty’s parade each year in Tokyo. The parade is held starting at 2p.m. at Omote-sando, Harajuku and runs about two hours. And yes, Irish whiskey and Guinness Stout is available if you want to avoid sake..
For more information on Celebrations around the world: