St. Patrick's Day in Chicago
What to do on St. Patrick's Day in Chicago? Tips and tricks for visitors, tourists and locals!
Chicago has one of the largest populations of Irish-Americans, and that makes St. Patrick's Day a huge celebration in the city of Chicago! From family events to food, parade to the dying of the river green, music, merriment and more - Chicago is a great place to celebrate St. Patrick's Day. Below are a few ideas of how you can get into the spirit of St. Patrick's Day in Chicago!
St. Patrick's Day Parades in Chicago!
Grab your green and bundle up and head out to the Chicago St. Patrick's Day parades! There are several parades held in Chicago.
Chicago's St. Patrick's Day Parade - This is the official city of Chicago parade and takes place downtown on Columbus avenue. It is normally held the Saturday before St. Patrick's Day, beginning at noon at Columbus and Balbo. If you are a tourist staying in a downtown hotel, this is the recommended parade for you.
Northwest Side Irish Parade - This is a neighborhood parade that takes place on the Northwest side of the city. If you are a Chicago local looking for a family-friendly parade in your neighborhood, this is a great option.
Southside Irish Parade - Although the South Side Irish Parade ended in 2009, the organizers will carry on the tradition with a festival in celebration of St. Patrick's Day at the Beverly Arts Center. This is a great all day family event.
Dying The River Green - A Chicago Tradition!
One of the greatest Chicago traditions is the dying of the Chicago River green in honor of St. Patrick's Day. Don't worry, the chemicals used are safe for the environment!
Wearing of the Green
It's a Chicago tradition that you need to wear something green on St. Patrick's Day! Don't leave home without a bit of green, or else!
Chicago Irish Film Festival
Another excellent Chicago tradition is the annual Chicago Irish Film Festival, which brings movies about Ireland and Irish culture to the American audiences. There are dozens of films screened, many of which go on to win awards at Sundance, Cannes, and other major festivals. The Chicago Irish Film Festival usually takes place the first week of March.
Take a chance on a new movie, and maybe you'll just find a pot of gold on screen!
Filmed Live In Chicago: Irish Band Gaelic Storm
Legendary Gaelic Storm filmed their live show in Chicago and released it on this DVD. A must see for fans of Irish rock!
Visit the Irish American Heritage Center!
The Irish American Heritage Center, located on the Northwest side of Chicago, is dedicated to preserving Irish heritage, culture and tradition. The Center contains a library with books in English and Gaelic, art gallery, several theatres, and meeting rooms. Lessons are available for Gaelic, quilting, dancing, music, art genealogy and more! The Fifth Province is a favorite spot - an authentic Irish pub, it hosts live music on the weekends and is always a grand time!
Find Your Chicago Irish Heritage!
If you're heading to the Irish American Heritage Center to research your relatives, this book will be invaluable to you. Not only will you get tips about researching your Irish heritage, this book is also a great guide to the Irish people and places around Chicago. Don't leave home on St. Paddy's day without it!
Reviews of the book from Amazon.com:
Finding Your Chicago Irish is the most comprehensive to do list for Irish culture in Chicago that I've seen! If you've ever thought you could use a concierge for all things Irish in Chicago, this is it! Ms. Shea Bossard makes the hidden gems of the city's Irish community more accessible than ever before. --Tim O Malley, President, Conciergepreferred.com
There is a reason that Chicago has produced such important figures in Irish culture, from Chief O'Neill to Michael Flatley. There is a vitality to this city that resonates in the music, literature, and art of Irish Americans who live here, and Sharon Shea Bossard captures this in her comprehensive guidebook. This work is a social map of Irish Chicago, and it doesn't miss a thing. To paraphrase an old Irish expression, Finding Your Chicago Irish is mighty. --Christopher Lynch, author Chicago's Midway Airport: The First Seventy-Five Years
Chicago Gaelic Park
Chicago Gaelic Park is located in the suburb Oak Forest, and caters to the social and cultural needs of the Irish community throughout Chicagoland. The park includes a sports complex, lounge bar, meeting rooms and banquet halls. It hosts the Chicago Gaelic Atheltic Association hurling and football teams, as well as annual dancing competitions and cultural festivals. There is always something going on at Chicago Gaelic Park!