Whilst the customary St. Patrick’s Day’s parades, street parties and festivals might not be going ahead in full force this year, nothing can stop the Irish spirit and people across the globe to celebrate their heritage.
Across the pond it’s no exception as American cities prepare for the big day, proud to celebrate their Irish history and culture. President Biden, whose roots stem from County Louth and County Mayo, is amongst those proud to honour their Irish connections, asserting that “the fabric of modern America is woven through with the green of the Emerald Isle”.
To reinforce his Irish connections, he has officially carried on the tradition of proclaiming March 2021 as Irish-American Heritage Month, encouraging all Americans to celebrate the achievements and contributions of Irish Americans.
VisitTheUSA takes a look at how cities are celebrating this month and how revellers can get involved virtually:
St. Patrick’s Day Celebrations – Boston, Massachusetts
Nearly a quarter of all Boston residents claim Irish ancestry and throughout the city, memorials and monuments serve as a reminder of the influence of the Irish and Irish-Americans. Visitors looking to explore the city’s Irish heritage can walk in the footsteps of Irish immigrants and their descendants along Boston’s Irish Heritage Trail, boasting over 200 years of Irish history from Commodore John Barry to President John F. Kennedy. The city certainly knows how to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day and this year will be no different. Those looking to enjoy poetry and sing-alongs can tune in to the virtual Celtic Sojourn, whilst those looking to attend a free virtual concert can watch local band Dropkick Murphys perform.www.visittheusa.co.uk/destination/boston
St. Patrick’s Day Celebrations – Chicago, Illinois
Irish connections with Chicago run deep and the city’s St. Patrick’s Day celebrations are not just about the party itself, but celebrating Chicago’s heritage and history. This year, whilst Chicago won’t be filling its streets with bagpipers, Irish dancers and Clydesdale horses, the city will be welcoming visitors to celebrate virtually. From the comfort of their home, people can enjoy live streaming of all the traditions of what is known as the best Chicago St. Patrick’s Day Parade. www.visittheusa.co.uk/destination/chicago
St. Patrick’s Day Celebrations – Savannah, Georgia
Throughout its history, Savannah has been home to a number of Irish neighbourhoods celebrating Irish heritage and cultural groups. Since 1824, the Southern coastal city has paid homage to St Patrick and boasts the largest annual celebration in the South. As well as annual celebrations each March, the city also hosts the Savannah Irish Festival in February each year, featuring traditional foods, music and dancing. This year’s St. Patrick’s Day events, including the Celtic Cross Ceremony, Greening of the Fountain, Jasper Green Ceremony and St. Patrick’s Day Mass will be virtual and open to visitors around the world. www.visittheusa.co.uk/destination/savannah
St. Patrick’s Day Celebrations – New York City, New York
New York City is filled with Irish landmarks and iconic sites celebrating its heritage. From McSorley’s Old Ale House, the oldest Irish pub in the city, to Ellis Island, the main entry point welcoming the Irish to the United States in the 19th century, visitors can experience Ireland’s influence. For over 250 years, New York City has put its greenest face forward for St. Patrick’s Day and the city’s annual holiday parade is the world’s biggest, usually attracting around two million spectators. This year, whilst the parade won’t be of the same scale and magnitude, it will be just as symbolic, with festivities taking place online. ‘New York City St. Patrick’s Day Parade Gallery of Greetings’, invites people to share messages of support, bringing together the community and celebrating the spirit of St Patrick’s Day. www.visittheusa.co.uk/destination/new-york-city
St. Patrick’s Day Celebrations – San Francisco and Santa Monica, California
Each year, San Francisco holds an annual Irish-American Crossroads Festival, comprising literary, musical and cultural events. This year’s event will be online, from 6 March – 11 April, inviting visitors from around the world to tune in and get involved. Further down the Californian coast, Pacific Park’s iconic Ferris Wheel on the Santa Monica Pier is one of a series of famous attractions and sites around the world which will turn green to mark St. Patrick’s Day, keeping Ireland in the spotlight. Donning over 170 LED lights, the light display will be available for visitors around the world to view from 13-17 March via live-streaming web cams.www.visittheusa.co.uk/state/california
St. Patrick’s Day Celebrations – St Louis, Missouri
St. Louis boasts a strong Irish population, dating back to the early 19th century, when it celebrated its first St. Patrick’s Day in 1820. The area in St. Louis where Irish settlers first arrived was known as the ‘Kerry Patch’, named after County Kerry in Ireland. Today, Dogtown, south of Forest Park, is considered to be St. Louis’ most Irish neighbourhood and visitors can explore the area’s art museum, history museum, as well as plethora of walking trails. Proud of its history and heritage, each year the city chooses a theme to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day. This year’s theme, St. Louis Irish heritage, will be showcased in the annual parade, taking place in a virtual format. Visitors will be able to witness floats, bands and marching units as they join the party.