St. Patrick’s Day is celebrated every year on March 17, honoring the anniversary of the Saint’s death.
After being kidnapped into slavery and brought to Ireland, St. Patrick escaped to France. There he converted to Christianity. By the time he had gotten back to Ireland, Christianity had taken over the country. Legends state that the Saint destroyed pagan rites after confronting the Druids at Tara, widening Christianity as a religion. He became a bishop and was later given the title of Ireland’s patron saint.
When St. Patrick’s Day became a day of celebration in Ireland, festivities were quite simple. This holiday normally falls during Lent, which makes this holiday more religious. Irish families traditionally would attend church in the morning and celebrate with family and friends in the afternoon. Traditional Lent rules prohibit eating meat but that rule was lifted. People feast, drink, and dance on this day.
Once Irish immigrants made their way to the United States, celebrations got grander. Irish Americans attend themed parties as well as consume a decent amount of alcohol. People get into the spirit by eating green food and dressing in green clothing. Large parades take place in cities such as Chicago, Boston, Denver, Philadelphia, and others.
One American tradition that has been added to the list includes dying rivers green. Chicago is home to one of the most famous green rivers on St. Patrick’s Day. This tradition was started in 1962 and still occurs to this date. How will you celebrate?