The day of green: St. Patrick’s Day


Melany Dean

St Patrick’s day is an Irish holiday, so shown above is an Irish family reunion shirt from the Donovan family.

Melany Dean, Staff Writer

St. Patrick’s day is on March 17, this year being celebrated on a Friday. As an American, you may just think of it as a holiday where you get pinched if you’re not wearing green, or when grown ups go out and have fun, but to the Irish, it is a religious holiday. Who is Saint Patrick, why is he celebrated, and what are some of the traditions?

St. Patrick was a man of the fifth century. According to, “He was born in Britain to wealthy parents near the end of the fourth century,” but at age sixteen he was taken as a slave to Ireland. Six years later he escaped. In the time he was a prisoner, he worked as a shepherd. When he was finally released, he came back and brought Christianity with him.

St. Patrick is celebrated because he is the patron saint of Ireland, which means he is the protector or guide. He is also the national apostle which means he was the one who brought Christianity to Ireland. One of the most popular legends about him is that he explained the Holy Trinity (the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost) by using the three leaves of a shamrock, which is native to Ireland.

A few traditions are the parade in New York, New York, dyeing the Chicago River emerald green, and a four-day celebration in Dublin, Ireland. According to, “The New York City St. Patrick’s Parade is the oldest and largest St. Patrick’s Day Parade in the world. The first parade was held on March 17, 1762 – fourteen years before the signing of the Declaration of Independence.” The first parade was composed by a group of homesick Irish, ex-Irish patriots, and Irish military members.

The dyeing of the Chicago River is done at 9 a.m. the same day as the holiday. The recipe for the dye is a closely guarded secret but has been proven not to harm the environment. The four-day-long celebration in Dublin, Ireland, consist of 3,000 artists, musicians, dancers, poets, and performers.

In conclusion, although others may not celebrate this holiday religiously, it is still important to people such as some Christians and Irish.