More Culture:

March 05, 2015

How to celebrate St. Patrick's Day in Philadelphia

There are options for everyone, really!

Events Holidays
St. Patrick's Day parade Irish Philadelphia/Tom Keenan

Philadelphia St. Patrick's Day Parade 1961.

As many Philadelphians know, the city celebrates St. Patrick's day in two very different ways. Whether you're part of the young, boozy revelers or the family-friendly parade watchers, there are plenty of ways to honor the cultural holiday. Not Irish but want to celebrate anyway? Just remember to say St. Paddy's Day, not St. Patty's, or you'll give yourself away. 

Countdown to St. Patrick's Day

McGillin's is serving up authentic Irish Stout, Irish Potato Martinis and traditional Irish food now through St. Patrick's Day. On Tuesday, March 17, McGillin's will open up an hour early at 10 a.m. to start the all-day festivities.

Now through Tuesday, March 17
McGillin's Olde Ale House
1310 Drury St.
(215) 735-5562

The Official Erin Express

Hop on a free bus and head to bars around Philadelphia for a citywide pub crawl. All three Cavanaugh's locations, Slainte, Saint Declan's Well, Westy's Tavern and more will participate.

Saturdays March 7 and March 14
Buses run noon-6 p.m. | Pay as you go
Locations vary

Erin Express and Running of the Micks

You'll need a wristband for drink specials and to ride this Erin Express bus loop, which runs to bars like McFadden's, Gunners Run and Voltage. Buses leave every 30 minutes from Crabby Cafe and stop at the Philadelphia Museum of Art steps for a drunken "Running of the Micks."

Saturdays March 7 and March 14
Noon-9 p.m. | $40
Crabby Cafe
1050 N. Hancock St.
(215) 574-9700

The Leprechaun Run

Benefiting Special Olympics Philadelphia, this 5-mile run and 2-mile walk is now in its 30th year. The race follows Martin Luther King Drive and begins near Paine's Park by the Philadelphia Art Museum.

Saturday, March 14
9 a.m. | 5-mile run: $35, 2-mile walk: $25
Paine's Park
North 24th Street & MLK Drive

3rd Annual St. Patrick's Festival

Head to the Piazza for eight hours of open-bar packages, music from DJs and live bands and drink specials. Partial proceeds from this massive party benefit the St. Baldrick's Foundation

Saturday, March 14
Noon-8 p.m. | $5-$39
The Piazza at Schmidts
1050 N. Hancock St.

James Joyce & Irish Authors

Hands-on tours at the Rosenbach let guests get up close and personal with historic items. This tour focuses on Joyce, Bram Stoker and others and their connections to themes like Thomas Jefferson, the Internet and "Moby Dick."

Sunday, March 15
3-4 p.m. | $5, plus General Admission
The Rosenbach Museum
2010 Delancey Place
(215) 732-1600

The Event in the Tent III

This family-friendly day of fun includes vendors, a moon bounce, train rides and other activities for the kids. Schools of Irish dancers will perform and live music will play all day, including a performance from Irish band Blackthorn

Saturday, March 14
3-8 p.m. | Free admission, tickets recommended
Ridley Marina
401 S. Swarthmore Ave. Ridley Park, Delaware County
(610) 521-2800

Philadelphia St. Patrick's Day Parade and Mass

Head to the Commemorative Parade Mass in Saint Patrick’s Church at 20th and Locust streets at 9:15 a.m. before the parade kicks off at noon. The parade begins at 16th Street & JFK Boulevard and heads down toward the Philadelphia Museum of Art, with performances at Eakins Oval.

Sunday, March 15
Noon | Free admission
St. Patrick's Day Parade
JFK Boulevard from 16th Street to Eakins Oval

Sober St. Patrick's Day

This popular NYC event makes its way to Philly for the first time in 2015. WHYY's Ed Cunningham will host a night of alcohol-free refreshments and music. Seven-time All-Ireland Button Accordion Champion John Whelan and four-time All-Ireland Fiddle Champion Dylan Foley will perform among other Irish acts.

Sunday, March 15
4-7 p.m. | Children Under 10: $10, Students: $12, Adults: $15
150 N. 6th St.

The Bogside Rogues at Brittingham's

As part of their "12 Days of St. Pat's" tour, this Irish rock group will perform at Brittingham's in Lafayette Hill.

Sunday, March 15
5 p.m. | Pay as you go
640 E. Germantown Pike, Lafayette Hill, Montgomery County
(484) 344-5162

Commodore Barry Club Post Parade Party

After the parade, head to the Irish Center for a cultural celebration. Food will be available for purchase, and music will be provided by the Vince Gallagher Band and DJ John Shields.

Sunday, March 15
8 p.m.-1:30 a.m. | $10
The Irish Center
6815 Emlen St.
(215) 843-8051

St. Patrick's Day at Fado

After holding a riotous "St. Practice Day" on Saturday, March 7, and a family-friendly brunch Sunday, March 15, Fado will open at 8 a.m. Tuesday, March 17, for "Pints and Pancakes." Live music will play all day, and festivities will be 21 and up after 3 p.m.

Tuesday, March 17
8 a.m.-close | $5
1500 Locust St.
(215) 893-9700

St. Pat's Recovery Breakfast

Eat a fried-up breakfast to recover from McCarthy's five days of holiday hullabaloo. You'll get $2 off breakfast items between 10 a.m. and noon and $2 after burgers from noon to 4 p.m.

Wednesday, March 18
10 a.m.-4 p.m. | Pay as you go
534 Main St. Bethlehem, PA
(610) 861-7631