Everyone can get down with the green on St. Patrick’s Day 2010. Festivals are held all over the world, so whether you’re planning a trip to Ireland, staying stateside or even escaping to the sunny Caribbean, you’re bound to find a celebration worthy of wearing your green. Here are TravelMuse’s top nine St. Patrick’s Day events:
1. New York City
Since 1762, New York City has been celebrating St. Patrick’s Day with a huge parade. This year it kicks off at 11 a.m. at 44th Street and Fifth Avenue. Don’t look for floats or balloons; this is a true marching parade, with dozens of bands, pipers and the like from the United States and Ireland. www.nyc-st-patrick-day-parade.org
Plan a trip to New York City on TravelMuse.
Boston beats New York City as the oldest St. Patrick’s Day celebration in the United States, with the first one held in 1737. This year’s parade of floats, marching bands and pipers starts on March 14 in South Boston. www.irishmassachusetts.com
Plan a trip to Boston on TravelMuse.
Now celebrating its 186th year, the city of Savannah offers up one of the largest events in the United States, with 400,000 people expected to attend! The St. Patrick’s Day parade kicks off at 10:15 a.m. on March 17 with bands, floats and plenty of green. www.savannahsaintpatricksday.com
Plan a trip to Savannah on TravelMuse.
For more than 40 years, Chicago has actually dyed its river emerald green for the annual Irish fest! This year, look for it to happen on March 13 at 10:45 a.m. The downtown one is always held the Saturday before St. Patrick’s Day and kicks off at noon. www.chicagostpatsparade.com.
Plan a trip to Chicago on TravelMuse.
St. Patrick’s Day in the Caribbean? Sure! It makes sense when you find out that Montserrat recognizes the date as a national holiday and many citizens have Irish heritage. A full week of St. Patrick’s Day events is planned from March 13 to 20, with, of course, the biggest celebration on March 17. www.visitmontserrat.com
Plan a trip to Montserrat on TravelMuse.
Ireland started its St. Patrick’s Day Festival only in 1995 (it was mainly a religious holiday before that). Now the hugely popular event in Dublin is a six-day affair (this year, it’s March 12 to 17), with a parade on the final day. Over the course of the festival, more than 4,000 performers will entertain about one million people with music, street theater, carnivals, comedy, street performances, dance and a treasure hunt. www.stpatricksday.ie
Plan a trip to Dublin on TravelMuse.
Toronto’s 22nd Annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade is scheduled for March 14. There’s a full slate of Irish step dancers and pipe-and-drums bands who will march. The night before, put on your formal attire and attend the Grand Marshall Ball to dine, dance and bid in a silent auction. www.topatrick.com
Plan a trip to Toronto on TravelMuse.
Sydney’s big parade kicks off the St. Patrick’s Day 2009 celebration on March 21. After the parade, a variety of entertainment, crafts, food and children’s activities are offered in Hyde Park. www.stpatricksday.org.au
Plan a trip to Sydney on TravelMuse.
London celebrates all week, but the main events are the parade and a festival, both on March 14. The parade kicks off at noon from Hyde Park corner. The festival also starts at noon and runs until 6 p.m. Trafalgar Square hosts the main stage, but events also happen at Leicester Square and Covent Garden. Sample Irish food, dance, crafts and music. www.london.gov.uk
Plan a trip to London on TravelMuse.
Adapted from “Top 10 St. Patrick’s Day Events” by Kim Foley Mackinnon.