Credit: Amanda Marie

What actually is St. Patrick's day?

St. Patrick's Day is a cultural and religious holiday celebrated annually on March 17th, commemorating the death of Saint Patrick, the patron saint of Ireland. However, it became a public holiday in Ireland only in the early 20th century, and it has since become a global celebration of Irish culture and heritage.

The holiday is primarily observed by the Irish and those of Irish descendant around the world, but it has become a popular celebration in many countries. The holiday is typically associated with the colour green, shamrocks, and other symbols of Ireland. People often wear green clothing and accessories, and many cities host parades and festivals featuring Irish music, dance, and food.

History of Saint Patrick's Day:

Saint Patrick, the patron saint of Ireland, was killed, and St. Patrick's Day honours his memory. Around the fifth century AD, a christian missionary and bishop by the name of Saint Patrick flourished. Although the specifics of his life are not widely known, it is assumed that he was born in Britain, abducted as a teenager and carried to Ireland as a slave, eventually escaped and returned to Britain. He then made a missionary visit to Ireland, where he is credited with winning many Irish people over to Christianity. 

St. Patrick's Day was first celebrated in the United States in the late 18th century, as Irish immigrants brought the holiday with them to the new world. Over time, the holiday became more secular and less religious in nature, and today it is celebrated by people of all backgrounds and nationalities around the world as a celebration of Irish culture and heritage.

On St. Patrick's Day, go green:

Irish history and mythology are the origins of the St. Patrick's Day custom of wearing green. According to one legend, St. Patrick utilised the three-leafed shamrock to convey to the Irish people the idea of the Holy Trinity (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit). Green shamrocks became a representation of Ireland and Irish heritage.The lush green surroundings of Ireland, popularly known as the "Emerald Isle," are connected to the colour green. People can express their Irish pride and celebrate their ties to Ireland by donning green on St. Patrick's Day. 

As a festive display of celebration on St. Patrick's Day, many cities and towns throughout the world also colour their rivers or fountains green. When the Chicago mayor ordered that the Chicago River be painted green in honour of St. Patrick's Day in 1962, this custom got its start. Now days, a lot of different towns and communities around the globe continue to practise this custom.

Events and parades tied with St. Patrick's Day:

St. Patrick's Day parades and events are popular celebrations that take place in many cities and towns around the world. These events often feature live music, dancing, food and drink, and other festivities that celebrate Irish culture and heritage.

In addition to parades, many cities and towns around the world also host other St. Patrick's Day events and festivities. These may include live music concerts, traditional Irish dance performances, food and drink festivals, and other cultural events. Some cities even light up their buildings or landmarks in green to celebrate the holiday.While St. Patrick's Day parades and events have historically been associated with Irish communities and heritage, they are now celebrated by people of all backgrounds and nationalities as a way to join in the festivities and celebrate the spirit of the holiday.