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Everyone’s Irish on March 17th

St. Patrick’s Day is a national holiday celebrating Irish culture and heritage all over the world. March 17th began as a religious feast commemorating the day St. Patrick died. However, today it is a day of pride for the Irish as well as a day of celebration.

 Indianapolis celebrates St. Patrick’s Day every year with the Greening of the Canal (dying the downtown canal green!) and the St. Patrick’s Day Parade. Everyone puts on their greenest outfit and comes downtown to enjoy the festivities, which can get a little overwhelming. However, St. Patrick’s Day in Dublin was unlike anything I’ve experienced before.

At 800a, I met a large group of international students at the bus stop in Maynooth to ride into Dublin together. We got off the bus at the last stop around 900a. The streets were fairly empty aside from the parade personnel who were getting ready for the parade. We weren’t sure what time we would have to start lining up to get a good parade spot, so we left earlier than we needed. The streets were beginning to get busy around 1015a and by 1100a all you could see was green. We found a good spot to watch the St. Patrick’s Festival Parade. Unfortunately, as more people showed up to watch the parade, the further back we were pushed. We apparently weren’t being aggressive enough to keep our good spots at the front. The parade lasted about an hour and a half and was made up of bands, floats, performers, and dancers.

After the parade finished, everyone seemed to be running around aimlessly and there was complete pandemonium. It was crazy, but a good kind of crazy. The best way I can describe the moments after the parade ended is Wal-Mart on Black Friday. Once we got away from the heavy crowds, we checked out several pubs. We also stopped by the Irish craft beer and food market. We were all starving by this point because every restaurant had a line outside the door, so we were shamelessly eating all of the free samples. After the market, we just enjoyed the atmosphere. It was an incredible feeling to know that we were celebrating St. Paddy’s (not Patty’s) Day in Dublin. I got a lot of good pictures of the parade, but my camera battery died later in the day, which is just as well because sometimes the best moments in life aren’t caught on camera.

What a day –



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