Happy St.Paddy’s Day Everyone!!
I have been going to Chicago for St. Patrick’s day for the past 2 years and it has always been a great experience. The Irish culture is celebrated with pride and grandeur.
So first of all what is saint patty’s day and why do people celebrate it? St. Patrick’s Day occurs annually on March 17, the date marked by the death of Saint Patrick.
St. Patrick is Ireland’s most celebrated patron saint. The festivities surrounding this date commemorate Saint Patrick and the subsequent arrival of Christianity in Ireland. What began as a religious feast day for the patron saint of Ireland has become an international festival celebrating Irish culture with parades, dancing, special foods and a whole lot of green.
Chicago is best known for its annual tradition of dyeing the river green and a parade. People from all over the country visit Chicago to experience the celebration of St. Paddy’s day. You will see people drinking, singing and dancing and most of all everyone is wearing green.
We reached Chicago around 9:00am to see the river turn green. It was a chilly morning and every time I feel I was better off in bed. But when you mix up with the crowd, and everyone is super excited, your mood just changes. You hear music and see people dance, and it makes you feel great to be a part of something big.
This tradition of dyeing the river green is unique to Chicago and it all began in 1961. We watched the river turn green, which i mind you can take some time! But once you see the whole river turn green, it was beautiful.
We walked with the crowd to find the best place to see the parade from, but unfortunately we were late and just couldn’t find a good spot. As for me, being short doesn’t really help when all you can see are the heads of hundreds of people in front of you. I was only lucky enough to see some floats pass by just because they were huge. But nonetheless, it was fun! and I guess that is what matters.
Since I was not able to take pictures of the parade, here are some, courtesy of GOOGLE IMAGES! (What would we all do without google??! LOL)
The parade consists of everything Irish. There were floats, people waving the Irish Flag, Irish dancers, marching bands and bagpipers. Since hundreds of people come to watch, it is always difficult to get the best spot. It is always better to get a spot few hours earlier. Usually two parades take place in the city and the timings may even change, so it is recommended that you get all the available information beforehand.
If you ever visit Chicago during the month of march and do get a chance to be a part of the celebration, the best place to view the dyeing of the river include:
- East side of the Michigan Avenue Bridge
- West side of the Columbus Drive Bridge
- Along the banks of the Chicago Riverwalk between Michigan Avenue and Columbus Drive.
- Signature bar at Trump International Hotel & Tower
I hope some of you did get a chance to celebrate! and If you didn’t, you still have a chance next year.