Eat, Drink & Be Irish

Discover your inner-leprechaun this St. Patrick’s Day.

When it comes to St. Patrick’s Day, no other place knows how to celebrate quite like New York City. Whether you’re of Irish descent or just really look good in green, this festive occasion is guaranteed to keep you coming back for some good old-fashioned fun. On this day, everyone’s Irish in the Big Apple!

Known as one of the city’s greatest traditions, the annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade marched its way into our hearts for the very first time back on March 17, 1762 — 14 years before the Declaration of Independence was introduced. Officiated by the archbishop of New York, the parade commemorates both the Irish culture as well as the Catholic faith. (Cars, floats and other vehicles are not allowed.)

Over 150,000 participants take part in the parade every year in front of as many as 2 million spectators, proving that this time-honored tradition is only getting stronger with age. (Luck has nothing to do with it.) This year, the parade festivities kick off on Tuesday, March 17, starting at 11 a.m. and will be led by members of the National Guard’s 69th Infantry Regiment, known as the “Fighting 69th.” Come watch in wonder as an array of great bands, bagpipers, and marchers galore make their way along Fifth Avenue (from 44th St. – 79th St.).

But the festivities don’t stop with the parade. New York City bars feature a bevy of green beer, shamrock decorations, and of course, Irish whiskey. Not to mention the traditional pub-crawls, which will leave you feeling lucky… at least until the following morning.

Interested parties can sign up for a wide range of organized events, including PADDY FEST (3/14), New York’s only bar crawl after party at The Royal. (127 4th Ave.) Participants can enjoy exclusive drink specials and take to the dance floor to show off their own unique version of the Irish jig. And the city’s Top O’ The Mornin’ Party at McFadden’s is always a special treat (3/14). Starting at 8 a.m., members are served up a delicious, hearty breakfast that includes a four-hour open bar, which serves both beer and mimosas.

So grab your best friends along with your finest green garb and treat yourselves to a night you’ll (hopefully) always remember. (Note: upgrading to “all access” passes lets you into all the scheduled events!) May the luck of the Irish be ever in your favor. (To sign up for a pub-crawl, visit barcrawls.com)