The daffodils are in full bloom and the evenings are getting a bit brighter. The wind chill may still ensure that hats and coats are required, but there is no doubting that Spring is well and truly sprung. In almost every town and village in Ireland this Sunday 17th March, communities will be gathering to celebrate the feast day of St Patrick. There will be music and marching, floats and fun. So wrap up warm, don the green and the shamrocks and check out some of these fantastic parades.
Starting the celebrations early on Saturday 16th March, the harbour in Kinsale will be lit up for a unique Maritime Parade at 7pm. Boats of all shapes and sizes will light up the night sky as they sail into town. For the children there will be music and balloon art from 7pm. Everyone is encouraged to dress up, as there are prizes for the best dressed adult, youth and child. And to finish off this spectacular event there will be a fireworks display to bring a smile to every face. See here for all the details.
For the earlier risers, why not head to Kerry for the famous Dawn Parade in Dingle. At 6am the Saint Patrick’s Day celebrations will start with the Dingle Fife and Drum band leading the parade on a musical tour around the town. And for those who like a lie-in, there will be a second parade starting at 1pm. Or for the very enthusiastic amongst you, why not take in the two parades in one day. For full details see here.
While it’s not quite a dawn parade, the fun will be starting early on Achill Island too. From 8am onwards pipe bands will be gathering from all sides of the island and marching from village to village. Following mass at 9am ‘as gaeilge’, there will be a gathering of all bands at 10am in St Patrick’s Church. The festivities and music continue until 1pm,followed by a traditional parade in Achill Sound. For the full schedule of events see here.
The Big One
The streets of the capital city will come alive from 12 noon. With a theme of Storytelling, there will be mythical creations weaving their way through the streets of Dublin. With Irish and international bands, there will be toes tapping as the parade passes by. Come into town early to get the best viewing spots. Find out more here.
County Clare is famous for its traditional music, and there will be live music from 10am on March 17th in Ennis. Then the parade starts at 11 am bringing a festival atmosphere to the town. There will be musical workshops in Glor Theatre and traditional music sessions throughout the weekend. For details see here.
Galway city has been celebrating St Patrick’s Day with a parade for the past 117 years. Every part of the city including the famous fountain in Eyre Square will be turning green. This year the parade will begin at 11.30 am. With the theme of Diversity, the world-famous theatrical group Macnas will lead the parade as it winds its way around the city streets. There will be a new route this year – find out all the information here.
To Limerick and Beyond
And in Limerick, starting at 12 noon, the St Patrick’s Day Parade will have a theme of ‘One Giant Leap’. The parade celebrates the 50th anniversary of Neil Armstrong’s moon landing, so expect some spectacular floats and theatrical displays. See here for more details.
This is just a small snapshot of all the parades that are taking place around the country. For many more parades all over the country see Inspireme.ie. All details were correct at time of publication, please be sure to confirm the details with local organisers before you travel.