St. Paddy's Day (March 17th)

   Every year on March 17th, men and women around the world raise a toast or two in honour of St. Patrick, Ireland's greatest saint. While St. Patrick's Day is undoubtedly the most popular Irish tradition to survive in the modern world, what do we really know about the man and his legend? If you are interested, visit the Saint Patrick page.
   One of the most recognizable events on St. Patrick's Day's are the parades. The first such parade in America was on March 17, 1737 in Boston, sponsored by the Charitable Irish Society of Boston to raise funds for ill, homeless, and unemployed Irishmen. Presently, the largest North American parade takes place on New York City's Fifth Avenue, with an annual participation of over two hundred thousand people. Revolutionary War veterans originally began the Fifth Avenue parade in 1762 as a proud display of Irish heritage, and as an act of defiance against those who "didn't like the Irish very much".

   The Atlanta St. Patrick's Parade and St. Patrick's Family Festival is held each year in downtown Atlanta.
   The Parade is staged by Atlanta St. Patrick's Parade Inc. and is an outgrowth of the 153 year old Hibernian Benevolent Society of Atlanta's St. Patrick's Parade. The "Parade Committee" is made up of members of Atlanta's Irish Societies. The Atlanta St. Patrick’s Day Foundation augments the Atlanta St. Patrick’s Parade by raising awareness and giving financial support for the treatment and research of childhood diseases. This year's recipients include Cystic Fibrosis and St. Baldrick's.

"Chosen leaf
              Of Bard and Chief,
            Old Erin's native Shamrock!
              Says Valour, 'See
              They spring for me,
            Those leafy gems of morning!'
              Says Love, 'No, no,
              For me they grow,
            My fragrant path adorning!'
              But Wit perceives
              The triple leaves,
            And cries,--'O do not sever
              A type that blends
              Three godlike friends,
            Love, Valour, Wit, for ever!
O! the Shamrock, the green, immortal Shamrock!"

In the early 1900s, Nathaniel Colgan asked around Ireland concerning the shamrock and found that depending upon who you asked, it could be the Trifolium repens (white clover), Folium minus (lesser trefoil), Trifolium pratense (purple clover), or the Medicagio Lupulina (Black Medick). So take your pick! Whichever you choose, pin a piece to your St Paddy's outfit and at the end of the day, place it into the last glass of drink, then toast to the health of all and pick the wet drowned shamrock out of the glass and toss it over your left shoulder.

Beannachtaí na Féile Pádraig oraibh! (BAN-uhkh-tee nuh FAY-luh PAW-rihg O-rihv) = Happy St. Patrick's Day to You All!

Be sure to visit the Official sites for updates, sponsors, info, special packages & more

The Wearing of the Green: A History of St. Patrick's Day
by Mike Cronin, Daryl Adair

As the day approaches and you don't see your event or just wondering, check with your favorite pub, they are bound to have something brewing green