St. Patrick's Day is the one day a year when we're all a little Irish. Many people mark the day with hours of rowdy drinking, but if you prefer a St. Patrick's Day celebration that doesn't revolve around green beer in a noisy pub, you have plenty of options. Here are seven amazing places to celebrate St. Patrick's Day on March 17.
Dying the Chicago River green has been an annual St. Patrick's Day tradition in Chicago for generations, and it's a sight that has to be seen to be believed! In addition to the emerald-hued river, Chicago hosts more St. Patrick's Day festivals and parties per capita than any other U.S. city.
It may come as a surprise that this quintessentially Southern city is home to one of the largest St. Patrick's Day festivals anywhere, but Savannah goes all-out for the occasion each year. Fountains spray water dyed green, the Irish heritage festival stages troupes of Irish dancers, and everyone gets involved in the annual 5K Shamrock Run. Best of all for anyone faced with cold March weather: Savannah boasts 70-degree days in mid-March.
St. Louis, MissouriIf you want to enjoy a genuine Irish feast to mark St. Patrick's Day, look no further than the Hilton St. Louis' annual formal Irish dinner. You can burn off the calories by participating in the city's 5-mile run through the streets of downtown, and cap everything off by enjoying the parade with the other 250,000 spectators.
Looking to boost your knowledge of Irish American traditions in honor of St. Patrick's Day? Albany's Irish American Heritage Museum is the country's largest year-round collection of exhibits and information on the Irish American experience. While in town, you can also enjoy the 68th Annual Albany St. Patrick's Day Parade as it winds through the state capital.
Albany, New York
Of course, parades and festivals are not the only way that you can celebrate St. Patrick's Day. If you'd prefer to be metaphorically green instead, head to California's Treebones Resort. This eco-friendly camping retreat in Big Sur offers amazing views of the forest and ocean--and is also known for generating its own electricity using micro turbines and growing its own organic vegetables.
Treebones Resort, California
Like California's Treebones Resort, you can embrace green living on St. Patrick's Day by heading to the Sundance Resort in Utah. The resort's entire operation is based on eco-friendly principles, from its use of organic products to its program of promoting mountain restoration with erosion blankets.
Sundance Resort, Utah
If you really want to go all-out for the holiday, there's no better place to spend St. Patrick's Day than in Dublin itself. In contrast to the bar crawls and debauchery that mark many American St. Patrick's Day celebrations, Dubliners tend to enjoy live music and dining in traditional pubs to mark the day. While in Ireland, take the opportunity to learn about Irish folklore at the National Leprechaun Museum--and visit the Guinness Storehouse if you do want to indulge in a beer.
Whether you decide to mark St. Patrick's Day with a special trip or plan to celebrate closer to home, have fun, be sure to wear green and remember: Erin go Bragh!