Answering Your Biggest Questions About St. Patrick’s Day

St. Patrick's Day Traditions and Facts

Are you headed to a St. Patrick’s Day parade, this March 17, or to enjoy Guinness with your coworkers after a long day of work? However you choose to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day, it can certainly be more fun when you understand the origins of some of the holiday’s most beloved traditions. From wearing green to attending parades, and of course the man behind the celebration, itself, here is how St. Patrick’s Day got its legendary start!

Is Guinness the Official Drink of St. Patrick’s Day?

Estimates indicate that the amount of Guinness consumed on St. Patrick’s Day is triple the amount of an average day. That could be because this beer is Ireland’s most renowned stout, and one that actually got its start in Dublin back in the 18th century.

The stout has been enjoyed in the U.S. for hundreds of years, including by the country’s very first Irish immigrants. And though Guinness may look brown like many beers, it is actually a deep Ruby red!

Why Is Everyone Going Green?

While many citizens will wear green in honor of St. Patrick’s Day, some cities take it a step farther. Chicago, for instance, has become legendary for dyeing its Chicago River an eye-catching emerald green each year, in honor of the holiday!

The tradition of wearing green actually began after the holiday itself was formed. For many years blue was associated with St. Patrick. But as the holiday became world-famous, people associated with its country of origin, Ireland, which is famed for its Emerald Isle.

Green is also thought to be a color representing good luck, and tradition indicates that Irish children began the tradition of pinching those not wearing green on St. Patrick’s Day!

Are Parades an Irish Tradition?

Parades are customary throughout the U.S. and across the globe, in honor of St. Patrick’s Day. And like the first parade, on record, the New York parade in 1762, many still feature walkers and marchers as opposed to vehicles or floats. Many parades include traditional bagpipers, step dancers, and flag twirlers, most donned in green and gold!

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