Image via Flickr
The city will soon be looking very green as 150,000 marchers and two million spectators come together for the annual St. Patrick’s Day parade. Bagpipers, marching bands and more will make their way from Midtown to the Upper East Side, as the oldest and largest St. Patrick’s Day Parade in the world celebrates its 257th year. This year’s parade will take place on Saturday, the day before St. Patrick’s Day, because March 17 falls on a Sunday. Read on for more details, how to avoid traffic, and how public transit will be affected.
Know before you go
St. Patrick’s Day is almost here, and though its modern iteration seems to have devolved into a daylong drinking activity, it’s still a good time to reflect on New York’s Irish heritage. Irish immigrants have been coming to New York since the colonial era, but in the 19th century, they were one of the biggest groups in the city, making up about a quarter of the population. Their cultural influence is everywhere, but there are some spots in town where it shines through the most. Here are our favorites.
Check ’em out
Photo via Richie S/Flickr
Some cities are lucky to have a single St. Patrick’s Day parade, but New York City is blessed with a whopping nine parades dedicated to the holiday. While Saint Patrick’s Day is not until March 17, three communities have already celebrated: Staten Island held its annual parade on Forest Avenue and Queens held its 43rd Saint Paddy’s parade in Rockaway, as well as its LGBT-friendly St. Pat’s For All in Woodside. No worries, though: There are still six other St. Patrick’s Day Parades coming up, including NYC’s biggest, in Manhattan.
Here’s where and when to attend the remaining five
The parade in 1904 at Fifth Avenue and 59th Street via NYPL
Sure, New York has plenty of interesting history, but who would have thought the first recorded St. Patrick’s Day parade was held not in Ireland, but in our fair city? It was on March 17, 1762, 255 years ago and 14 years before the signing of the Declaration of Independence, that Irish soldiers serving in the British army marched to honor the Catholic feast day of St. Patrick, their country’s patron saint. With Irish immigrants flocking to the United States, and in large numbers to New York, in the mid-19th century, the parade became an annual tradition and spread elsewhere in the country.
Find out more
Get out your green, because in honor of St. Patrick’s Day we’re putting a twist on the classic real estate comparison conundrum pinning some of the coolest Irish castles currently up for sale against a few New York castles (a.k.a. really expensive condos). Hit the jump to see what’s available in the $2 to $12 million range, and then cast a vote for whether you’d rather having a sprawling 700-year-old stone castle with 380 acres of land in Ireland, or a comfy four-bedroom penthouse at The Brompton in Yorkville. And if you’re not into castles or condos, we’ve also figured out how many pints of Guinness you can get for the median price of an apartment…
Which would you pick?