St. Patrick’s Day is rapidly approaching, as the holiday occurs annually on March 17 — conveniently taking place on a Friday this year. The holiday celebrates the patron saint of Ireland, Saint Patrick, as it occurs on his death day. While St. Patrick’s Day has traditionally been a religious holiday, it is celebrated in the United States secularly as a festival of Irish culture. Here are five different ways to honor Saint Patrick on March 17.
Eat Irish food
St. Patrick’s Day is often associated with elegant feasts, so a relevant way to celebrate the holiday in modern times is to eat Irish food. There are many choices to pick from — from savory dishes like shepherd’s pie to baked goods such as soda bread. Potatoes specifically have played an important role in Irish history, in both good and bad ways, but they remain a staple food of Ireland — with dishes including boxty and Dublin cobble, which are a potato pancake and mix of potatoes, sausage, bacon and onions, respectively. Alternatively, many stores sell green bagels as well to get into the St. Patrick’s Day spirit.
Watch or read Irish media
Ireland has produced many great films, television shows and books that can be consumed on St. Patrick’s Day to honor Irish culture. Their best films include the John Wayne classic “The Quiet Man,” 2015’s “Brooklyn” about an Irish immigrant and “Sing Street,” a 2016 film about teenagers starting a band in 1980s Dublin. Similarly, great Irish television shows include the crime show “Love/Hate” and the sitcom “Father Ted.” Last but not least is Irish literature, as Ireland has produced many great writers, such as Oscar Wilde, Bram Stoker and James Joyce.
It is probably a good idea to wear some form of green clothing on St. Patrick’s Day to avoid getting pinched by those who are enthusiastic about the holiday. It has seemingly become a modern tradition to wear green on St. Patrick’s Day, as green is the unofficial color of the holiday and Ireland as a whole. Green and Ireland are often associated together because of the lush vegetation in the country and the fact that green appears on the Irish flag. From suiting up in a full green leprechaun outfit to just wearing a small four-leaf clover pin, there are many different choices people have to wear green.
Watch the Celtics play
One particular professional sports team that captures the essence of St. Patrick’s Day is the Boston Celtics, a team in the National Basketball Association (NBA). The Celtics mascot, Lucky the Leprechaun, has brought the Celtics luck since 1950, and the team has won an impressive 17 championships in its history. The Celtics currently have the second-best record in the NBA and are an exciting team to watch as they gear up for a deep playoff run this season. They will visit the Portland Trail Blazers this St. Patrick’s Day at 10 p.m., and hope to get a victory to celebrate the holiday.
Look for four-leaf clovers
The four-leaf clover is an Irish symbol of good luck, and finding a four-leaf clover is considered an incredibly lucky happenstance. One can find a four-leaf clover by searching through the grass, although one will likely only find the much more common three-leaf clover. However, St. Patrick’s Day might be the best chance to test one’s luck and search for the elusive four-leaf clover in the grass.