St. Patrick's Day Parades 2016
The Best St. Patrick's Day Parades of 2016
There's no need to spend St. Patrick's Day in a pub this year. Check out GAYOT's roundup of the best parades and festivals across North America to find family-friendly ways to celebrate Ireland's patron saint. This year marks the 100th anniversary of Easter Rising, a critical moment on the path to Irish independence, meaning many of these festivities will be even more exciting than usual. These annual events — many of them dating back two centuries or more — feature impressive floats, bagpipe players, Irish bands and, of course, plenty of beer. Take a look below to find out how cities from San Francisco to Boston are honoring their Irish heritage.
LAS VEGAS, NV
Sin City goes green! Las
Vegas is always fond of a good party, so this holiday
is no exception. Hotels are offering St. Paddy's specials,
local pubs are serving green beer and parties are held
at clubs throughout the city. The Southern Nevada Sons & Daughters of Erin are hosting
their 50th annual parade and party in downtown Henderson
on Water Street on March 12th at 10:00 a.m. Admission is free, and a variety of festivities can be found on the
official website. To get more details about the event in Henderson, go to the Southern Nevada Sons & Daughters of Erin official website.
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NEW ORLEANS, LA
Mardi Gras isn't the only major celebration in New Orleans - this Big Easy also throws a pretty wild St. Patrick's Day party. There are several parades taking place the week of the holiday, including the Irish Channel Parade and a procession through the French Quarter. All the events feature floats, Irish dances, music and attendees dressed in festive attire. One tradition is for the crowds to yell out, "Hey, mister, throw me something," as the floats pass by. What they catch can be anything from cabbage to toilet paper. To join the party, visit the New Orleans St. Patrick's Day official website.
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city of Atlanta has long had a close relationship with all things Irish.
No wonder they throw a huge bash. Last year's festivities drew out a whomping 80,000 spectators and this year will attract the same. The 2016 parade will feature floats, bands of
every kind, military units, Bagpipe & Drum Corps,
Irish dancers, clowns, high tech firefighting equipment,
police units, drill teams, dignitaries from Ireland and
more. The 134th Atlanta St. Patrick's Parade begins at
noon at Peachtree Street near the High Museum of Art in Midtown. For details,
visit the Atlanta St. Patrick's Parade official website.
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year marks the 61st annual Chicago St. Patrick's
Day parade. Revelers meet at noon on Saturday, March 12,
on the corner of Columbus and Balbo. Following a citywide
search for "Chicago's Fairest Colleen," the
winner of the St. Patrick's Day Queen Contest will lead
the parade riding in a horse-drawn carriage. As
always, participants can watch the river turn an incredible
shade of green. The best viewing is from the upper level
bridges at Michigan Avenue or Columbus Drive. For more
information visit the Chicago St. Patrick's Day Parade official website.
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SAN DIEGO, CA
The parade kicks off at 10:30 a.m. on the corner of 5th Avenue and Juniper Street, near Balboa Park, followed by a day of food, beer, music and activities for the whole clan. That night, ShamROCK spreads 80,000 square feet of Astroturf over the Gaslamp Quarter of Downtown San Diego for an adults-ony bash combining Irish rockers and green beer. For more information, check out San Diego's St. Patrick's Day Parade and Festival official website.
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With a history dating back to 1771, five years before the signing of the Declaration of Independence there, Philadelphia's St. Patrick's Day Parade holds over 240 years of continuous celebration honoring not only the man that became the namesake of this holiday, but also the roots back to the homeland. It is also one of the grandest parades in a city that loves parades. This year the festivities begin at noon. For more information, visit the Philadelphia St. Patrick's Day Parade official website.
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Considering Boston has more Irish pubs than any other city in the United States, it should be no surprise that Beantown celebrated the first St. Patrick's Day Parade ever back in 1737. It is now the second largest parade in the country, attracting as many as 600,000 spectators and participants. The parade kicks off at 1:00 p.m. from Broadway Station. For more information, visit the Boston St. Patrick's Day Parade official website.
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SAN FRANCISCO, CA
Patrick's Day Parade west of the Mississippi River, San
Francisco's 165th annual parade starts at 11:30 a.m. at Second and Market
Streets and proceeds to City Hall along Market Street. A festival in Civic Center Plaza takes place from 11:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m. on the same day, which includes Irish cultural and retail booths, Irish food and beverages, Irish dancing, live music and children's activities, such as pony rides. It is sponsered by the United Irish Socities of San Francisco. For more information, visit the San Francisco Tourism Tips
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ST. LOUIS, MO
The 47th annual St. Patrick's Day Parade
of St Louis is expected to attract over 250,000 spectators. The Irish Village, featuring Irish-themed entertainment, food and beverages, opens at 9 a.m. before the parade, which begins at 12:00 p.m., and continues both during and after the parade. A five-mile run also commences at 9:00 a.m. and draws a crowd of 13,000 participants. For more information, visit the St. Louis St. Patrick's Day Parade official website.
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The 45th annual St. Patrick's Day Parade
DC begins at noon on Historic Constitution Avenue,
between 7th to 17th Streets NW. This year, an estimated
20,000 spectators will be entertained by floats, Irish
dancers, drill teams and music performed by marching bands
and pipe bands dressed in traditional Irish garb. For more information, visit the Washington, DC St. Patrick's Day Parade
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This southern city's 192nd annual St. Patrick's Day Parade may not be the oldest, but it is one of the largest — boasting some 400,000 spectators — and perhaps the grandest. Held in either rain or shine, the parade begins at 10:15 a.m. sharp. Plus, there's even a bonus for celebrating the holiday in Savannah as festivities go beyond the single day with events and activities taking place during the whole month. For
more information, visit the Savannah St. Patrick's Day Parade Committee official website.
NEW YORK, NY
The largest St. Patrick's Day Parade in the world, New York's edition is held for the 255th time in 2016, attracting 150,000 marchers and some 2 million spectators. Marching up Fifth
Avenue from 44th to 79th Streets, the parade kicks off at 11:00 a.m. For more information, check out the NYC St. Patrick's Day Parade official website.
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LOS ANGELES, CA
Join Angelenos as they party it up at Casey's 43rd Annual St. Patrick's Day Street Festival in downtown LA. Enjoy cold beer and good food while DJs spin music throughout the celebration. This is an all-day event that goes from 6:00 a.m. to 2:00 a.m., so stamina is necessary. Local watering holes such as Broadway Bar and Cole's Red Car Bar will feature St. Patty's Day drink specials. Find out more at the 213 Nightlife official website.
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More than 10,000 people participate in bands, floats, drill teams, marching units and novelties in Cleveland's popular parade, which began in 1867. Beginning at E. 18th St., this parade proceeds down Superior Ave. to just beyond E. Roadway. The action starts precisely at 1:04 p.m. so don't miss it! For more information, visit Cleveland's St. Patrick's Day Parade official website.
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The oldest and largest St. Patrick's Day Parade in Canada, held annually since 1824, Montreal's three-hour parade begins at noon with a giant replica of St. Patrick himself, which proceeds down St Catherine St. from Rue du Fort to St Philips Square. For more information visit the Montreal Irish Parade official website.
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Your Complete Guide to St. Patrick's Day
Explore all things Irish, from Irish beers to traveling in Ireland with GAYOT'S St. Patrick's Day Guide.