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)

Price: Free

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

Price: Free

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

Price: Free

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.

Price: $30

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

Price: $17

More Info: 768-6253 or www.kiawahdining.com