Rebecca Garland
Rebecca Garland
Business and Education Expert

We are well into March, and that means it’s almost time for St. Patrick’s Day 2024. Did you know that March is actually designated as Irish American Heritage Month - with 9.2% of the American population having Irish ancestry? However, modern celebrations focus less on historical significance and more on enjoying festivities with loved ones and friends. 

It’s hard to know what’s true, but this year, more than 61% of consumers are planning to celebrate the holiday, and it’s a safe bet that many are seeking new St. Patrick’s Day ideas. They should have plenty of options for holiday activities as companies jump to provide opportunities for patrons. In 2023, consumers spent $6.85 billion during the celebration. 

Key Insights:

  • The average annual spending on St. Patrick’s Day ranges from $4.4 billion to over $6.8 billion. According to estimates, people spend around $245 million on beer alone. 
  • St Patrick's Day parades are held in many cities, with the top ones in New York, Chicago, and Boston. New York City has been hosting its parade since 1762.
  • Most popular holiday activities include cooking traditional meals, hosting Irish-style parties, learning céili (kay-lee) dancing, and more.

Ready to plan your fun this March? Read on for St. Patrick’s Day safety tips and ideas about how to have a good time, make new memories, and enjoy time with your friends. 

Most Popular St. Patrick’s Day Activities

There is no shortage of things to do and places to go for St. Patrick’s Day. So, how do you usually celebrate this day? You put on something green with shamrock, eat corned beef, cabbage and drink green beer. However, you can do much more, and some fun activities and tips for St. Patrick’s Day activities are as follows:

Host a St. Patrick’s Day party with Irish dances

Why not celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with a party? Start with a traditional Irish meal with staples like soda bread, black pudding, roast chicken, and plenty of potatoes. Then, serve your food along with some traditional Guinness or other Irish spirits and finish the night with Irish coffee. Set a dress code with green attire, like wearing a green T-shirt with a large shamrock on it, Irish flags of green, white, and orange. Provide your guests with entering word, Irish-related sayings (like "Kiss me, I'm Irish!") or St Patrick's song like this one:

I'm looking over a four-leaf clover
That I overlooked before.
One leaf is sunshine, the second is rain,
Third is the roses that grow in the lane.

Make some crafts

Get crafty for the holiday by putting your creative talents to use. Make door decorations, wall hangings, party favors, or even matching green hats for all of your friends to wear together as you celebrate St Patrick’s Day 2024.

Learn how to céili (kay-lee) dance

It’s Irish social dancing. And then, organize an Irish dancing competition. Play St. Patrick's Day games, like “Hot potato”, "Pot o' Gold" treasure hunt (a search for gold chocolate coins), etc.

Go to a St. Patrick's Day parade

Check to see if your town has a St Patrick’s Day parade or head to the closest city. Most large cities, such as New York City, Boston, St. Louis, San Francisco, and Chicago have parades. Put on something green and head out to the streets to enjoy Irish music, dancing, and see what floats have been developed this year.

Have an Irish coffee and other traditional meals

Enjoy St. Patrick’s Day with delicious Irish coffee, the tastiest cocktail that consists of hot coffee, Irish whiskey, brown sugar, topped with cream. Or create an Irish feast of corned beef and cabbage to celebrate the holiday this year. 

Watch Irish movies

If you are not attending parades or hosting parties, but prefer a family evening, you might as well watch Irish movies. The best ones are The Secret of Roan Inish, Waking Ned Devine, Into the West, Circle of Friends, etc.

Organize a traditional pub crawl and drink beer

Most bars and pubs offer special prices on draft beer, food, and cover charges. Not only beer is popular on this day, but other famous Irish drinks, too. You can try a pint of Bulmers (or Magners) cider, Smithwick's ale, Jameson Irish whiskey or some Bailey's Irish cream. Watch this video for more information about St. Patrick's Day celebration.

Prepare gifts for your family and friends

St. Patrick’s Day is a perfect opportunity to give a gift to someone you care for. Start considering your St. Patrick’s Day gift ideas in advance to have enough time for preparation. Do not forget that any holiday is a hot time for most stores. So, you may come across  problems with shipping, ordering, or both. Following up with St. Patrick’s Day reviews can help prevent issues if you read them before making purchases. 

Top Places and Festivals to Celebrate St Patrick’s Day

St Patrick’s Day 2024 coincides nicely with the start of the spring and the opening of the warmer weather travel season. So, what better time is there to check out a new city for a festival or party? While many tourists head to Ireland for the holiday, there are numerous other destinations where you’re sure to have a great time.

Dublin, Ireland

Dublin is the top place to celebrate St Patrick's Day as here everyone becomes Irish. The Dublin festival is lined up for March 15 – 18, 2024, and is billed as the “largest celebration of Irish Culture and Heritage in the world.”

London, England

The spirit of the Irish is alive and well in London. Celebrate the holiday on March 17 by watching the traditional parade wind its way through the city, starting in Hyde Park and winding up on Cockspur Street, hitting St. James’s Street and Pall Mall on the way. 

New York City, New York

The annual New York City parade has been running since 1762. This year, the NYC St. Patrick's Day parade will be on Saturday, March 16 at 11 am. Be sure to arrive early to get a good spot to watch what promises to be one of the most enthusiastic and largest celebrations in years.

Boston, Massachusetts

It is one of the best places to get in the spirit because almost a quarter of Boston citizens claim Irish ancestry. Boston will be celebrating St. Patrick’s Day in a big way with a three-mile-long parade route through the city, live music, and other events. The celebration kicks off at 1pm on Sunday, March 17.

Chicago, Illinois

Chicago is famous for dying its river green in celebration of St. Patrick’s Day every year. This year, enjoy the parade, and perhaps a boat cruise along a truly emerald green river on March 16, 2024 starting at 10 am.

New London, Wisconsin

Wisconsin’s largest St Patrick’s Day parade and festival will be on Saturday, March 16, 2024. The celebration always kicks off when the “local leprechauns” change the city’s name from New London to New Dublin every year. 

Hot Springs, Arkansas

Don’t have the patience for a big event? Why not head to Hot Springs, Arkansas, to see the world’s shortest St. Patrick’s Day parade? The festival includes fair booths, live musical acts, and the shortest parade you can find. The St. Patrick’s Day celebration in Hot Springs is scheduled from March 16-17, 2024. 

Tokyo, Japan

More than 100,000 visitors celebrate the famous Irish holiday in the heart of Japan every year. Tokyo will host a St. Patrick’s Day parade and festival this year on March 16-17, 2024, in Yoyogi Park at Panorama Square. There’s no bad seat for this parade since it makes a U-turn halfway through the march, so you’ll find plenty of great pictures from all angles. 

St Patrick's Day safety tips

Top St Patrick’s Day Safety Tips

St. Patrick’s Day is a fun day of celebrations, but like many celebrations that include alcohol and frivolity, you need to plan ahead to be sure you stay safe. Starting to make plans for the holiday? Consider some of our top safety tips below.

Tips while attending the celebration

  • Plan ahead to avoid high-traffic areas or road closures due to the holidays. Traffic and people enjoying a good party aren’t always a good mix.

    In one of St. Patrick’s Day reviews #3441488, the customer complained that a parade shut down the route they needed to travel to pick up a time-sensitive item at JC Penney. It arrived while they were out of town, and then “there was a St Patrick’s Day parade in front of the store” so they “decided to pick it up the next day.” But by then, it was too late and the item had been sent back before they could collect it. 

  • Keep yourself and your money safe by only making reservations that are refundable and allow cancellation if you find that your plans suddenly change. 
  • Plan ahead and make reservations if you can. There will be large crowds enjoying the holiday, so be sure you have your favorite spots booked in advance so you won’t be turned away at the door. 
  • Travel in groups. There is safety in numbers, so be sure you’re with a group of friends, especially if you will be drinking. 
  • If you are enjoying alcoholic beverages, make a plan for how you will get home. Look for public transportation options nearby before you begin celebrating or be sure you’re prepared to call an Uber. You might also consider simply celebrating within walking distance of home.
  • If you are driving, do so defensively. Watch for other drivers who may be intoxicated or distracted and be mindful of pedestrians who might not be aware of their surroundings as they walk. Remember never to drink and drive. 

Tips while hosting parties and celebrating home

  •  Start your St. Patrick’s Day fun with a big meal. That way you’ll have plenty in your stomach to help balance any drinking you might enjoy. Drinking on an empty stomach can cause issues. 
  • Stay hydrated! Green beer may be a St. Patrick’s Day tradition, but it can leave you dehydrated the next morning! Consider matching each beer with a glass of water to stay in balance. 
  • Shop early and stock up. If you’re going to be hosting an event that requires popular drinks and meals, consider buying them a week or two in advance to avoid shortages. Just be sure you shop wisely! However, even then, you can’t be sure your things will arrive. One customer complained in review #4446752 that some items from Johnnie O never arrived:

It was meant to be gift for my son for St. Patrick's day. I am very disappointed.

  • Stay hydrated! Green beer may be a St Patrick’s Day tradition, but it can leave you dehydrated the next morning! Consider matching each beer with a glass of water to stay in balance.

Steps to take in case of an accident

In case of any accident during the celebration of St Patrick’s Day 2024:

  • Stay calm.
  • Call for help by calling 911.
  • Be sure to take pictures of the accident scene for insurance and police reports. 

It's going to be a great St Patrick's Day 2024! Find your favorite bit of green to wear, decide on the best holiday activities for you and your friends, and then get out there and celebrate! It can be helpful to read the St. Patrick's Day reviews others have left, but ultimately, only you can decide what's best for your bit of fun this holiday. So, get out there, explore your city's celebrations, and consider leaving a review about your experiences.

Legal disclaimers:

  1. While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of this publication, it is not intended to provide any legal, medical, accounting, investment or any other professional advice as individual cases may vary and should be discussed with a corresponding expert and/or an attorney.
  2. All or some image copyright belongs to the original owner(s). No copyright infringement intended.

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