Chicago again dyed its river green to celebrate the St Patricks Day celebrations. Approx 200 floats, bagpipers, bands and Irish dancers took part in the event with tens of thousands of people lining the route and again turning out in their green scarves and hats for their second major parade in a week – to celebrate the citys rich Irish heritage.
Up to a staggering 3 million people took part in the St Patricks Day festivities in New York.
5th Avenue hosted the citys 247th annual parade as the traditional marching bands with Irish pipes and drums made their way through crowds. Near the head of the parade was New Yorks finest – the NY Fire Dept – who had been relegated to lower in the order last year after claims that they were always drunk when attending the parade.
If you attended the parade let us have your story on how the day went.
Police said a record 650,000 revellers gathered up to 20 deep on the pavements of central Dublin for the annual parade, which is the culmination of five-days of events to celebrate the St. Patricks Festival. Many resourceful people used any means possible to see the parade including ladders, bins and even any statue that just happened to be free. The 3,000 strong parade was led by a large, spectacular float of St. Patrick on a Harley-Davidson motorcycle – which must have been something to behold.
Back in 1903 – Dublin held its first St. Patricks Day parade and unless you abstain from the drink – it must have been a pretty dour affair with most pubs closed and only a few small parades taking place. However since the mid 1990’s Dublin has really embraced a multi-day festival with a broad range of entertainment and events resulting in the world’s 2nd largest St Patrick’s Day parade after New York.
Belfast put on a great St Patrick’s Day parade that was duly celebrated by thousands of people from all backgrounds. It would seem that gone are the days when St Patrick’s Days would be only celebrated by members of the nationalist community and unionists would openly refuse to participate.
The parade was enjoyed by thousands of people who lined the route to see the parade pass through the city centre from Belfast City Hall to a free open air concert in Custom House Square.
The Lord Mayor said: “This sends out a really positive message that Belfast is moving forward at a tremendous rate – As Lord Mayor I feel extremely proud today. I have spoken to people from throughout the world today – people who have come here just for St Patrick’s Day. It used to be in the past that only one community wanted to celebrate, but St Patrick is for everybody and today that, basically, is what has happened. There is no doubt that next year can be even bigger and better.”
As the 10th anniversary of the Good Friday Agreement which restored devolution approached it would seem that Northern Ireland is truly going from strength to strength.
If you did tell us all about it.
Happy St Patricks Day 2008 ?
Whether Irish or not – everybody is Irish today – with an estimated 80 million people with Irish ancestry living outside Ireland celebrations shall again be taking place in some of the most unlikely places and not always for the reasons that surely the first St. Patricks Day celebration took place in Boston, Massachusetts, U.S.A in 1737. Take for example Argentina – Their celebrations have little to do with the Irish community ( the fifth largest in the world outside Ireland ) it is perhaps therefore safe to say that the popularity may have something to do with the resentment felt towards the British who invaded way back in 1806. In Buenos Aires, the party is held in downtown street Reconquista, where there are several Celtic Bars; in 2006, there were 50,000 people in this street and the pubs nearby
In Canada, Montreal hosts the longest running St Patricks Day parade in Canada dating back to 1824 although St. Patricks Day itself has been celebrated in Montreal as far back as 1759 by Irish soldiers in the Montreal Garrison following the British conquest of what was then New France. The Irish Association of Manitoba runs an annual three day festival of music and culture based around St Patricks Day.
Four other countries which surprisingly ( at least to me anyway ) celebrate St Patrick’s day are the tiny island of Montserrat, Mexico, Malta and Russia.
As one would expect America holds by far and away the most St Patrick’s day parades with over 100 taking place in U.S. cities. The first St. Patricks Day parade took place not in Ireland, but in the United States. Irish soldiers serving in the English military marched through New York City on March 17, 1762.
Saint Patrick is said to have been born somewhere towards the end of the 4th or the beginning of the 5th century. At the age of sixteen he was kidnapped from his native land of the Roman British Isles by pirates, and sold into slavery in Ireland. There he worked as a shepherd and during this time – as legend would have it – he had a dream whereby God instructed him to escape on a getaway ship. So after six long years of slavery he managed to escape and fled home to Britain. It would appear that his time in Ireland had a major impact upon his life, as he left his homeland and joined a monastery in France in the hope of becoming a priest. On reaching the status of Bishop, Patrick decided to return to Ireland after dreaming that the voices of the Irish people were calling him to convert them to Christianity.
Travelling throughout Ireland, Patrick established a number of monasteries and set up schools and churches to aid in the conversion of the Irish to Christianity. During his thirty years travelling Ireland he was arrested several times, but always managed to escape to continue his work.. It was Patrick who used the shamrock – which resembles a three-leafed clover – to help explain the concept of the Trinity (father, son & holy spirit). It is believed that he died in the 5th Century on March 17th which is the day that St Patrick is commemorated each year.
The midget which according to teenager Jose Alvarez and his friends wears a pointy hat and has a distinctive sideways walk ( too much drink, obviously ) was caught on video last week by a terrified group of youngsters.
Yesterday terrified teenagers told national newspaper El Tribuno that they caught the creature while playing about in their hometown. He is quoted as saying “We were chatting about our last fishing trip at 1am in the morning. I began to film a bit with my mobile phone while the others were chatting and joking.
Suddenly we heard something – a weird noise as if someone was throwing stones.
We looked to one side and saw that the grass was moving. To begin with we thought it was a dog but when we saw this gnome-like figure begin to emerge we were really afraid.
Jose also claims that many other locals had come forward to say they had spotted the gnome.
He said: “This is no joke. We are still afraid to go out – just like everyone else in the neighbourhood now.
One of my friends was so scared after seeing that thing that we had to take him to the hospital.”
Obviously nobody had told him that the Gnome was in fact an Irish Leprechaun on his way to the St Patricks Parade over the coming weekend to join the other tens of thousands of people in Buenos Aires many of whom also like a tot.
Check out http://www.london.gov.uk/stpatricksday/ for further info.
Why not upload your photos on here or tell us how your day went !
Comedian Derek Richards a one-third part of the Irish Comedy Tour, which features comics of Irish descent who blend the atmosphere of an Irish pub with stand-up comedy and promiing plenty of crass, political incorrectness in the show.
Their no-holds-barred comedy show is a regular fature on the Club circuit and wil no doubt be in full swing this St. Patricks Day weekend.
Derek and Mike McCarthy are the full-time comics in the show with Jim Paquette playing guitar and blasting out many classic Celtic drinking songs. He also mixes in some original tunes from his comedy CDs which are very popular in the area namely 358 Hangovers a Year and Beer and Fireworks.
Richard points out that they really try to convey to the audience how much fun that they together. He is quoted as sayng that We try to create a fun atmosphere, like sitting at a bar having drinks with friends. Its a drunken, comedy, music, Irish-pub mess.
Now that sounds like one great night to me !!!
Irish pubs are as much a staple of Boston culture as Guiness is to the Irish.
With Massachusetts being the home to more people who can claim Irish ancestry than any other state it s small wonder that the City has so many Irish Bars with a few favourites listed here :
Flann O’Brien’s: 1619 Tremont St., Roxbury Crossing; 617-566-7744, flanns.com.
J. Foley’s: 21 Kingston St., Downtown Crossing, 617-338-7713.
Mr. Dooley’s: 77 Broad St., Financial District; 617-338-5656, somerspubs.com.
The Druid: 1357 Cambridge St. (Inman Square), Cambridge; 617-497-0965, druidpub.com.
Brendan Behan Pub: 378 Centre St., Jamaica Plain. 617-522-5386, brendanbehanpub.com.
Happy Drinking !!!
According to reports Obama’s most recent Irish ancestor is great-great-great-grandfather Falmouth Kearney, who was born in Ireland. His parents were Joseph and Phoebe Kearney of Moneygall, County Offaly. If Falmouth Kearney turned out to be Obama’s only Irish ancestor, he would be a little more than 3% Irish.
John McCain has on one side great-great-great-great-grandparents, Capt. John Young and Mary (White), both of Ballymore, County Antrim in Ireland. That also gives McCain about 3% Irish ancestry.
According to some recent stats Ocean City, N.J. south of Atlantic City has 32.6 % of its population of 32.6 % who claim some connection with Ireland. Next is Barnstable, Mass on Cape Cod, followed by one of the big hitters – Boston, where 1 in 4 consider themselves Celtic. On the other side of the coin – Brownsville, Texas has the least affiliation with Ireland with a population of only some 1.6 % who claim Irish ancestry.
Almost 25% of the residents who live in the state of Massachusetts decend from Irish immigrants with 23% of the population of Celtic ancestry. In fact Massachusetts has a higher proportion of residents of Irish descent than any other state just ahead of New Hampshire – 20% & Rhode Island – 18% The remaining New England states Connecticut, Vermont and Maine also rank among the top 10 in this category, as does Delaware, New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Montana. While NY has the largest number of Irish residents Boston tops the list of cities with the largest percentage of the population.
Irish Beef Stew
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 1/4 pounds stew beef, cut into 1-inch pieces
- 6 large garlic cloves, minced
- 6 cups beef stock or canned beef broth
- I cup of Guinness beer
- 1 cup of fine red wine
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1 tablespoon dried thyme
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) butter
- 3 pounds russet potatoes, peeled, cut into 1/2-inch pieces (about 7 cups)
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 2 cups 1/2-inch pieces peeled carrots
- Salt and Pepper
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
1 Heat olive oil in heavy large pot over medium-high heat. Add beef and sauté until brown on all sides, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and sauté 1 minute. Add beef stock, Guinness, red wine, tomato paste, sugar, thyme, Worcestershire sauce and bay leaves. Stir to combine. Bring mixture to boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, then cover and simmer 1 hour, stirring occasionally.
2 While the meat and stock is simmering, melt butter in another large pot over medium heat. Add potatoes, onion and carrots. Sauté vegetables until golden, about 20 minutes. Set aside until the beef stew in step one has simmered for one hour.
3 Add vegetables to beef stew. Simmer uncovered until vegetables and beef are very tender, about 40 minutes. Discard bay leaves. Tilt pan and spoon off fat. Transfer stew to serving bowl. Sprinkle with parsley and serve. (Can be prepared up to 2 days ahead. Salt and pepper to taste. Cool slightly. Refrigerate uncovered until cold, then cover and refrigerate. Bring to simmer before serving.)
Serves 4 to 6.
Irish Soda Bread
Prep time : 15 mins Baking time : 30 mins
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 3 tablespoons butter or margarine
- 2 eggs
- 3/4 cup buttermilk
- 1/3 cup raisins
In a bowl, combine flour, brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Cut in butter until crumbly. Combine 1 egg and buttermilk; stir into flour mixture just until moistened. Fold in raisins. Knead on a floured surface for 1 minute. Shape into a round loaf; place on a greased baking sheet. Cut a 1/4-in.-deep cross in top of loaf. Beat remaining egg; brush over loaf. Bake at 375° for 30-35 minutes or until golden brown.
Well the answer is a small town in the South East of Alabama. Not a place you would expect to find a large St. Patrick’s Day celebration like those in New York, Dublin, Birmingham ( England ) But still a “World Record” Irish event. The “World’s Smallest St. Patrick’s Day Parade” will once again bring the Irish spirit to Enterprise on Monday, March 17 with the one-person parade. Every St. Patrick’s Day since 1993, a notable Enterprise citizen of Irish ancestry is selected to wear the special costume and carry the colours of the Emerald Isle exactly one city block;
Whilst visiting his father back in ireland, Paul Deasy was going through some documents with his great uncle who showed him that it had been discovered that their family line went back to William Bradford, who sailed on the Mayflower and served as governor of the Plymouth Colony for more than 30 years. On reading this Paul decided to take do his own research, starting with the names of people who came to America on the Mayflower. Its something I caught the bug on, he said. What he was to find was truly amazing in fact he was was a line with presidents John Adams and John Quincy Adams.
Furthermore research showed he is a 10th cousin to President George H.W.Bush and is a tenth cousin once removed of the current President Bush. However it is his connection to Franklin Delano Roosevelt that is his favorite, he said, even though he is a sixth cousin, four times removed !!!
Diana was born into an aristocratic family. On her mothers side, Diana had Irish, Scottish, English, and American ancestry – fact.
Their are nine places in the United States which share the name of Dublin, Irelands capital city. The greatest population is Dublin, Ohio with 31,392, followed by Dublin in California at 29,973.
The number of places in the United States named Shamrock – the floral emblem of Ireland – totals 4. The two most populous places are Mount Gay-Shamrock – West Virginia ( 2,623 ) Shamrock – Texas ( 2,029 ) followed by Shamrock Lakes – Indiana ( 168 ) Shamrock – Oklahoma
( 125 ) NB these figures many now have altered.