photography of green clover plants

Why Americans Celebrate Saint Patrick’s Day March 17

St. Patrick’s Day is a widely celebrated start-of-spring season event, but its origin roots are far from what we see in today’s celebrations.

photography of green clover plants
Photo by Phong Nguyen on

The Significance of March 17

That day is native to Ireland’s history and is commemorated as the day in which Saint Patrick himself died.

St. Patrick, the tutelary saint of Ireland is believed to have brought Christianity to Ireland in the 4th century. He is thought to have actually gotten rid of lots of practices followed by pagan religious beliefs throughout that time. Most notably, he is well-known for having repelled all the snakes from Ireland, which was thought to refer to the practice of snake worshipping.

However, lots of people in the United States  make themselves busy in preparing for this celebration starting as early as February 1. Like the Irish, Americans observe this feast day on March 17. As a matter of fact, many Americans have embraced St. Patrick’s Day over the years; adopting native Irish practices from food to fashion, and at the same time integrating their own new versions of tradition. Let’s take a look.

Shamrock Green

Shamrock, also known as seamroy, is the three-leafed clover that has unique significance for the Irish. Though some individuals believe that Shamrock was used by Saint Patrick to describe the Christian doctrine, Shamrock is surely the symbol of Irish.

Americans tend to start the holiday by dressing up in shamrock green. When a person does not put on green, they will certainly regret it. It’s bad luck. Getting pinched is the penalty for not wearing green. But what’s a dress-up without somewhere to go show it off?!


Similar to Mardi Gras, the main event that all look forward to during the St. Patrick’s Day are the parades and surrounding party events.

In Kansas City, the day starts with Gaelic Mass as the opening act compiled with a spectacular March 17 ceremony led by the Lone Bagpiper. The day is topped as all roads are filled-up with parade floats and other band performers.

Corned Beef and Cabbage by

In Scranton, Pennsylvania,  Greater than 150,000 people join their parade after going to mass at St. Peter’s sanctuary that morning. The parade’s procession line – wildly popular as one of the longest running parades – is filled with professional dancers, local artists as well as bagpipers.

Then, in the city of San Francisco, like many others, the most normal of celebrations is found in having a round of green beer with friends in favorite local pubs around town.

At Home & On The Menu

What if you’re not into parades and drinking alcohol? Fear not! Food is always a staple of any holiday tradition.

For Saint Patrick’s Day, corned Beef and cabbage meal is the conventional Irish food. Get your fancy tableware out! Also check out this recipe video you can add to your dinner table.

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