Are you planning to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day this year? If so, it doesn’t have to be all about parades and Shamrock Shakes. In fact, there are many ways to celebrate this important date in the Irish calendar, whether you’re honouring your Irish heritage or just enjoy the craic! But what is this annual holiday all about, and how can you celebrate St. Patrick’s Day in an authentic way? Read on for a few suggestions!
St. Patrick’s Day is a day dedicated to Ireland’s foremost patron saint, who is credited with having brought Christianity to the island. It was originally a religious feast, but has gradually become a worldwide celebration of Irish culture, especially amongst the Irish diaspora. Here in Ireland it’s a national holiday, where we spend time with family, attend mass, and sometimes attend a parade. This year is the first year since COVID that the Dublin St. Patrick’s Day parade will be reinstated, so it’s sure to be extra festive!
Here are 7 fun and authentic ways to celebrate St Patrick’s Day in 2022.
Make a traditional Irish meal. There’s nothing better than tucking into a wholesome Irish menu, especially if it’s a little chilly outside! Dishes like stews, colcannon and shepherd’s pie are delicious classics and easy to make at home. But why not push the boat out with something a little more fancy? Irish salmon, stout-braised steak, mussels steamed in cider – there are so many yummy options. Finish off with a Guinness chocolate pudding (sshh, the calories don’t count on St. Patrick’s Day!).
Drink an Irish tipple. No excuses needed to enjoy a Guinness! But, of course, Irish drinks go a lot further than the famous stout. There’s also whiskey, Bailey’s Irish cream, Bulmer’s cider, Irish coffees, and more. Or, if you want to make a green cocktail, skip the food colouring and instead use fresh mint or basil and muddle it with sugar, lemon or lime, gin and soda. Delicious! And, of course, don’t forget the traditional Gaelic toast: Sláinte!
Wear a touch of green. The easiest way to show your Irish spirit is to incorporate a touch of green into whatever you wear on 17 March. It can be as simple as a shamrock pin or a pretty scarf or tie, or you can go all-out with a chic emerald blazer or a pair of green high heels.
Support Irish artisans. One of the best ways to pay tribute to Ireland’s patron saint is to support Irish artisans, crafters, and designers. Jewellery, ceramics, lace, knitwear, rugs, tweed, and crystal are all examples of beautiful, desireable items produced in Ireland.
Read an Irish literary classic. There’s such a rich heritage of Irish literature, from James Joyce to W.B. Yeats, Samuel Beckett, and Oscar Wilde. More recent favorites include John Boyne, Seamus Heaney, Marian Keyes, Sally Rooney… I could be here all day listing them. So whatever your genre of choice, you’ll find something to love in the Irish canon. For children, try Eoin Colfer, Siobhan Dowd, or Oliver Jeffers.
Have an Irish movie night. Ireland also has a proud cinematic tradition, with lots of emerging young filmmakers over the past few years. So there’s plenty of choice if you want to have an Irish movie marathon. If you live in a major city, you may even find an Irish film festival on the go. Put on a classic like ‘The Commitments’ or something newer like ‘Wild Mountain Thyme’ and enjoy!
Listen to Irish music. You might want to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day this year by seeking out some traditional Irish music and dancing, or indulge in some more modern favourites. For example, U2, The Cranberries, Thin Lizzy, The Pogues, or Sinead O’Connor.
However you decide to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day in 2022, I hope it’s a good one!
Slán go Fóill,