Kissing the Blarney Stone: Happy St. Patricks Day!
You don't have to be Irish to enjoy a green beer and a bit of the cabbage. This weekend we'll open our celebration vaults for the most widely celebrated saint in the world.
It's said that St. Patrick was kidnapped at the age of 16 by Irish raiders and held as a slave. He was given a vision of his release and so it was. When he returned home he began studying to become a Priest.
Originally the green was the blue. Only over the years did green become the official color associated with St. Patrick. An interesting fact about the three leaved clover, St. Patrick used it to explain the holy trinity to the pagan Irish. Did you know that the "wearing of the green" refers to wearing a shamrock on the 17th?
In Ireland, St. Patrick's day became an official holiday in 1903 with the first parade being held in 1931. Drinking in association with St. Patrick's day got so out of hand at one point that all bar's were ordered to close on March 17th. This ordered was repealed in the 70's.
In the United states, believe it or not, St. Patrick's day is NOT an official/legal holiday. The day of green however, has been celebrated since before the American Revolution.
The traditional meal for St. Patrick's day is beer, wait, I meant Irish bacon and cabbage served with beer.
- St. Patrick wasn't Irish (he was born in Britain)
- Snow and frost have affected the growing season and Irish men and women may have to go without a shamrock this year.
- St. Patrick is said to have banished snakes from Ireland and while its true there are no snakes in Ireland, well, there never were.
- in 1962 Chicago started dying the Chicago River green
- 13 million pints of Guinness are consumed around the world on St. Patrick's day, up from the ordinary everyday consumption numbers of 5.5 million.
- for over 200 years people have traveled to Cork, Ireland to kiss the Blarney stone (at the Blarney castle) to gain the gift of Eloquence
Happy St. Patrick's day! Enjoy!