Between being a quarter Irish myself and my mom marrying into an Irish family, we never need an excuse to, ahem, have a good time.
But for the rest of the population that doesn't have a drop of Irish in them, there's always a ready-made excuse in St. Patrick's Day.
While many see it as an excuse to wear green, drink beer, and dig into a plate of corned beef and cabbage, March 17 has a bit more back history.
The day marks the anniversary of the death of St. Patrick, the patron saint and national apostle of Ireland.
The saint's religious feast day has been observed as a religious holiday in Ireland for more than 1,000 years.
And as St. Patrick's Day falls during the Christian season of Lent, it traditionally has been a day to set aside Lenten prohibitions against the consumption of meat in favor of dancing, drinking and feasting.
In a nod to my heritage and family, and in honor of St. Patrick, I've decide to forego my typical format to dedicate my space to a listing of local events that will have you partying like the Irish.
St. Paddy's Day Block Party & Parade
What: The 11th annual St. Paddy's Day Block Party & Parade claims to be the biggest St. Patrick's Day celebration in the Lowcountry. The family-friendly event will feature live music across three stages, bagpipe music, a mechanical bull, food vendors and trucks, a kids' zone with jump castles, face-painting and more. Live music will be performed by the Charleston Hot Shots, The V-Tones, High Gravity Jazz Band, Lizzy Pitch, Folkgrass, The Three Dudes, The Ryan Perry Band, Karl Byrne, Don Merckle & the Blacksmiths and Wadata.
When: Noon-7 p.m. Saturday; road closures begin at 9 a.m.
Where: Olde Village of North Charleston (East Montague Avenue near Park Circle)
More info: www.madraruapub.com
St. Patrick's Celebration
What: The annual celebration in downtown Charleston will start off with a traditional Mass at St. Patrick's Catholic Church on St. Philip's Street, a parade down King and Broad streets, a raising of the Irish flag over City Hall, and conclude with Irish meals and entertainment at local pubs. During the 16th annual parade, expect to see vintage cars, hear live music, see a sea of green and more.
When: 8 a.m. Mass, 10 a.m. parade, 11:30 a.m. flag raising, noon entertainment Monday
Where: King Street
More Info: 709-0732
Folly Beach St. Patrick's Day Pub Crawl
What: Eleven Folly Beach bars and restaurants will be participating in the annual St. Patrick's Day Pub Crawl. Each location will have food and drink specials, contest and games. Prizes will be awarded to event-goers after the crawl at Loggerhead's on West Ashley Avenue. Participants in this year's crawl are Loggerhead's, Woody's, Folly Brew Pub, Drop-In Deli, Planet Follywood, Crab Shack, The Grill and Island Bar, Surfbar, Blu, Rita's Seaside Grille and Snapper Jack's. Proceeds from the event will benefit Folly Beach charities.
When: Noon-5 p.m. Saturday
Where: Center Street, Folly Beach
More info: VisitFolly.com
St. Patrick's Bar Crawl
What: More than 40 local bars and pubs will participate in this special two-day St. Patrick's bar crawl.
When: 11 a.m. Saturday and Monday
Where: Mercury Bar, 547 King St.
Price: $10 per day
More Info: www.barcrawls.com/charleston/stpatricksday
St. Patrick's Weekend
What: Blu Restaurant and Bar will host a weekend-long St. Patrick's Day celebration with live Irish music, a special menu and more.
When: 2 p.m. Saturday-Sunday
Where: Blu Restaurant and Bar, 1 Center St., Folly Beach
More Info: 588-6658 or www.blufollybeach.com
St. Patrick's Day Celebration
What: Acoustic guitarist Walter McDonough will play Irish favorites, with bagpipers and Irish dancers.
when: 1 p.m. Saturday and Monday
where: Dunleavy's Pub, 2213-A Middle St., Sullivan's Island
more info: 883-9646
St. Patrick's Celebration
What: This concert of traditional Celtic music will include an Irish buffet, beverages and more.
When: 4:30 p.m. Sunday
Where: Lance Hall, Circular Congregational Church, 150 Meeting St.
More Info: 577-6400 or www.taylormusicgroup.net
St. Patrick's Lunch
What: Jasmine Porch will offer a special Irish-themed St. Patrick's Day lunch menu.
When: 11:30 a.m.-2 p.m. Monday
Where: Jasmine Porch, 1 Sanctuary Beach Drive, Kiawah Island
More Info: 768-6253 or www.kiawahdining.com
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