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14 Mar 2020 | 7 MIN READ

Saint Patrick Day Activities and Myths for Coronavirus Lockdown!

Marina Alojants
Must readDIYFun

Many of you would have heard about Saint Patrick Day but each can have a different understanding of what it is all about. The holiday is celebrated in around 50 countries, where people replicate Irish traditions and create new ways to have fun. It is now celebrated in more countries around the world than any other national holiday, so, join in the fun and celebrate all that is Irish!

Saint Patrick Day Activities

1. Crafts

Considering the Coronavirus pandemic, it is worth mentioning safe ways of having fun on Saint Patrick Day. This includes making DIY handmade crafts like a shamrock wreath that can be made using paper, ribbons, cardboard, and any other accessible materials.

What will Saint Patrick Day be without a touch of Irish magic? Make a pot of gold for the cheeky leprechaun to find! This craft is easy to make with only a mason jar, which you can paint at will, and lots of gold chocolate coins.

The holiday is almost always celebrated in green clothing, ginger beards, and leprechaun hats. If you cannot find a hat in stores or want to stay safe from public spaces, turn on your creativity and make one yourself! This craft only requires green card paper, markers, and glue.

2. Green drinks

If you are over 21 and want to make your day as green as possible? Have some green beer! No, that does not mean having a green bottle and calling it a day. Bars in Ireland and many other countries will be serving green-dyed beer for the occasion!

For those of you who are not into beer or want to make the day special for your kids, a mint smoothie is the next best thing! Not only is it green to suit the holiday, but it is also packed with healthy vitamins. You can use all kinds of ingredients for your smoothie, and if it is not green enough then a drop of food coloring will do the trick!

3. Green food

If your drinks are green, then why stop there? You can easily add some natural food coloring to practically any snack. For example, making green colored rice crispies that you can then cut into shamrock or hat shapes.

A natural green food idea is making good old guacamole sauce with chips. It requires a minimum number of ingredients and, although not an Irish recipe, it still fits the green theme.

Another idea for a sweet green dessert is making a mint chocolate-chip cheesecake. You get the hint, anything green is welcome in the festive menu!

4. Soda bread

A touch of traditional Irish food will only make the day more authentic! Soda bread is a type of quick bread that has 7 ingredients and is common on an Irish Saint Patrick Day table.

5. Games

Saint Patrick Day is as much about appreciating Irish traditions as it is about having fun and bringing fairytales to life. A perfect way to celebrate the holiday is by organizing a scavenger hunt. The game can be limited to family members and each clue can have a coin attached for motivation.

‘Drink If’ games can be played all year round but you can customize your cards to quit the holiday. For example, including a “drink if you’re wearing a hat,” or “if you are not wearing green.”

Do you want to test your aim or luck? ‘Flip the Hat’ is another game you can try that is similar to the bottle flip trend. All you need is one other person to serve as a target and a hat to flip!

6. Photo Booth

You can add this to your craft list or simply buy a bunch of Saint Patrick Day themed props to spice up your photos. Some apps like Snapchat and Instagram add specialized filters and stickers to use instead of props. Of course, the options can be limiting, so you can search and add a sticker of your choice with Pixomatic’s Web filter.

7. Irish Movie Marathon

What better way to spend a Saint Patrick Day than safe at home, with a bunch of green snacks and an Irish movie? Not only will you have a pleasant time but you can also learn a bit about Irish history, legends, and cinematography.

8. Green Landmarks

Are you restless and still want to leave the house for some fresh air (assuming no virus floats around)? Then, you can slip on a mask and search for a landmark in your area that will be lit by green beams on March 17!

9. Shamrock

As you may, or may not, already know, the shamrock or a four-leaf clover is one of the key symbols of Saint Patrick Day. It stems from a legend that the Saint used shamrock to explain the holy trinity during his missionary work. To honor the little bundles of luck, you can buy a pack of shamrock seeds and grow them at home!

10. Erin go bragh!

This term is a simplified version of the Gaelic phrase Éire go Brách, which means ‘Ireland till the end of time’. Feel free to use it in your social media posts and hashtags to share all the fun activities you had!

Myths Busted

Many stories and myths revolve around Saint Patrick Day. So, I am here to blow the mist away!

1. Saint Patrick was Irish

In short, Saint Patrick is the patron Saint of Ireland, but he was actually born in Britain in the late 4th century. At the age of 16, he was kidnapped and brought to Ireland as a slave. He later escaped but returned to convert the Irish to Christianity until his death on March 17, 461.

2. The whole green idea

Saint Patrick Day is famous for the abundance of green in monument lights, clothes, food, and even lakes. The Saint is actually better associated with the color blue! The green craze began in America and was based on the Irish leprechaun lore. It is said that leprechauns pinch anyone who is not wearing green, so people play along and dress in green to keep a cheeky fairy at bay!

3. The holiday as we know it came from Ireland

The holiday we know today is very different from what it was before. It used to be a small Christian celebration every March 17 with mass and a traditional meal. Nostalgic and wealthy Irish immigrants decided to bring the holiday to the United States, but this time to appreciate all that is Irish. 

Festive events like green parades were mainly conducted in cities with larger influential Irish communities and in time, the holiday started to revolve around their traditions rather than the Saint. The first Saint Patrick Day parade was held in Boston in 1737, and the Chicago River was dyed green ever since 1962!

4. Saint Patrick banished snakes from Ireland

The legend of Saint Patrick banishing all snakes from the island sounds impressive! The only problem is, Ireland never had nor has any snakes. This natural phenomenon is explained in a National Geographic article with the fact that snakes have no means of migrating to the island. The reasoning behind this legend is to represent how the Saint banished the peasant ways of the past, which are as ‘evil’ as the biblical serpent. 

5. A green dye is used in Chicago River

It is all a lie! The dye is actually orange until it comes into contact with the water. About 40 pounds, or 18kg, of the powdered dye is used to change the color of the mass of water. The process is done by a team of the Plumbers Union.

Although the holiday is honored in many countries, it is still a major celebration in Ireland. Dublin holds annual parades where people dress up in green and watch a ginger leprechaun waltz down the streets, accompanied by bagpipes and tap dancing girls. The events are a large tourist attraction, bringing over 50,000 people to see the parade. Last year, the Prime Minister of Ireland, Leo Varadkar, gifted a bowl of shamrock to President Trump for Saint Patrick Day while having a handful in his suit lapel. Unfortunately, the parade for March 2020 is canceled because of the Coronavirus outbreak.

Stay safe and have fun with all the activity ideas we share with you. Happy Saint Patrick Day!