As a brilliant emerald on a velvet pillow, March 17, Saint Patrick’s Day, is set in the middle of “Irish-American Heritage Month,” a period set aside to recognize “the contributions made by the tens of millions of Americans who trace their heritage to the Emerald Isle.” These forty-four million Americans proudly share their Irish ancestry, especially in celebrating St. Patrick’s Day with parades, family gatherings, masses, dances, etc. A local array of activities includes the ever-popular St. Patrick Day Parade in Columbus, an annual event sponsored by the Shamrock Club of Columbus.
Founded in 1936, the Shamrock Club provides members a wide range of events and activities, including live Irish music in the pub, dart leagues, progressive euchre nights, and much more. In addition to the annual St. Patrick's Day celebration which will be on March 16 this year, the organization also sponsors the Feast of St. Patrick with a procession to mass and the parade and the annual Irish Family Reunion.
The day will begin with a mass at Holy Cross Church at 9:30 a.m. The parade will step off at 11:30 a.m. on Nationwide Boulevard in the Arena District and will end at Veteran’s Memorial on W. Broad St. for the Irish Family Reunion at 1:00 p.m.
For a list of special activities leading up to the weekend, check out the Shamrock Club website.
In addition to the parade in Columbus, the City of Dublin also sponsors an annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade which begins promptly at 11 a.m. and last approximately 90 minutes, celebrated this year on Saturday, March 16, as it moves through historic Dublin. The mile-long parade, made up of approximately 100 floats, bands and bagpipers, not to mention the Grand Leprechaun, has been designated as #6 of the top ten St. Patrick Day Parades in the nation, according to US News and World Report. In 2012, Dublin, Ohio’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade was recognized by Orbitz as one of the “Top 10 Spots to Get in the Irish Spirit on St. Patrick’s Day.”
Maureen McCabe in Columbusbestblogs lists 10 places to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day in Central Ohio.
An Ohio Historical Marker placed in 2002 commemorates the many Irish immigrants who helped to make Columbus the city it is today. Click here to read the details.
Click here, to learn more about the month-long celebration and to view a couple of videos showing the influence of the Irish jig in tap dancing and other dance forms.