- May the leprechauns be near you
To spread luck along your way.
And may all the Irish angels
Smile upon you St. Patrick's Day.
Why Green on St. Patrick's Day
There are two versions of why green is the color of St. Patrick's Day, the first being that the color represents the Emerald Isle (Ireland), spring and shamrocks.
The second is that the wearing of the green traces back to when Ireland was separated and the Catholics lived on the “green side” and the Protestants lived on the “orange side.” The Irish flag is green, orange and white. Green represents the catholic side of Ireland, orange the Protestants and white represents those where were neutral and were composed of the descendants of the Celts. Because the term “saint” is more a Catholic term than a Protestant one, the green of the Irish flag represents the Catholics.
So why do everything up green on St. Patrick’s Day? Because Ireland is called the Emerald Isle, because of shamrocks, or because everyone's Irish on this day, take your pick as to why, but be sure to wear green on St. Patrick’s Day!
St. Patrick's Day Invitations
Irish folklore is full of make-believe fairies and Leprechauns are solitary little creatures that avoid contact with everyone, even other Leprechauns. Crotchety, gruff little men (there are no female Leprechauns) dressed in green to blend into the leaves and grass, they are about two feet tall spend their time making shoes for other fairies. Because of their thriftiness, they hide their treasure in pots of gold at the end of rainbows or very carefully scatter them around in the mountains and forests.
To find a Leprechaun, follow the rainbow to its end or listen for the faint noise of their shoemaker's hammer. But if you find a Leprechaun and are lucky enough to catch him and try for his pot of gold, watch out for his tricks. He will try to distract you and as soon as you look away, he'll take his treasure and disappear.
Luck of the Irish
In reading Irish history, the "luck of the Irish" is BAD luck. The term "luck of the Irish" is thought to come from being lucky enough to catch a Leprechaun and get his gold or it's is also thought to come from the time of America's gold rush. If an Irishman had any success, and there was a high number of lucky Irishman finding gold and silver, it had to be because of luck as Irishmen were not capable of such success. Bad luck, good luck or dumb luck, you'll hear this phrase on St. Patrick's Day.
The Blarney Stone
According to legend, kissing the Blarney Stone brings the kisser "persuasive eloquence" or in other words "blarney." Kissing the stone is no easy feat as you must bend over backwards and hold onto a metal bar because of the stone's location in the walls of Blarney Castle.
St. Patrick's Day Food
Corned beef and cabbage or Irish stew are traditional food choices for a St. Patrick's Day celebration.
History of St. Patrick
St. Patrick’s Day is celebrated on March 17th every year in honor of St. Patrick himself on the day he died in 461. This religious holiday has been celebrated by the Irish for over 1000 years. The intended meaning of St. Patrick's Day is a traditional day for spiritual renewal and offering prayers for missionaries worldwide.
Born in Britain to a Roman aristocratic Christian family around 390 A.D., his given name was Maewyn Succat. At 16, he was kidnapped, sold into slavery and was a shepherd in Ireland for 7 years. After his escape and voyage back home on a pirate ship, he traveled to France, was ordained as a priest and changed his name to Patrick. He traveled back to Ireland to bring Christianity to the people. After his death, he was largely forgotten until centuries later he was honored as the patron saint of Ireland.
St. Patrick's Day Green Beer
St. Patrick's Day Invitations
If you're looking to dye your beer green on St. Patrick's Day, you can use either blue or green food coloring.
Blue will give beer a shamrock green, especially light or yellow beers. Green food dye will result in a bright lime green color. You might want to buy both and see which one gives you the green you're looking for. Add 2-3 drops of dye to the bottom of your mug before you pour the beer to mix the color without having to stir it. If you buy a keg, it's almost impossible to dye the beer in the keg, so put the dye in each cup as you pour. Be careful with the dye as it can color more than your beer if you're not careful.
On St. Patrick's Day, there are 13 million pints of Guinness served, more than double a normal day. Other popular Irish beers are Murphy's Stout, Smithwicks and Kilkenny.
Turning the Chicago River Green
Green Chicago River
St. Patrick's Day Invitations
An unusual annual St. Patrick's Day tradition is the dyeing of the Chicago River green. They dyeing of the river started in 1962 when green dye was used to find illegal sewage discharges into the river and workers then had the idea to use the dye to celebrate St. Patrick's Day. That year, 100 pounds of green vegetable dye was dumped into the river and it was enough to keep the water green for a week. Today, the river stays green for only a few hours with only 40 pounds of dye now used.
St. Patrick's Day Parades
St. Patrick's Day parades were made in America. The first St. Patrick's Day parade took place in the New York when Irish soldiers of the English military marched through the streets in 1762 and played their music. The annual St. Patrick's Day parade in New York is the world's oldest civilian parade and the largest United States parade with over 150,000 people participating and crowds of 3 million lining the parade route for the 1-1/2 hour procession.
Traditional St. Patrick's Day Song
St. Patrick, the holy and tutular man
His beard down his bosom like Aaron's ran:
Some from Scotland, some from Wales, will declare that he came,
But I care not from whence now he's risen to fame;
The pride of the world and his enemies scorning
I will drink to St. Patrick, today in the Morning!
He's a desperate big, little Erin go brah;
He will pardon our follies and promise us joy,
By the mass, by the Pope, by St. Patrick so long
As I live, I will give him a beautiful song!
No saint is so good, Ireland's country adorning:
Then hail to St. Patrick, today, in the morning!