Facts about St. Patrick's Day

Facts about St. Patrick's Day

St. Patrick, the patron saint of Ireland, is a widely known historic figure. But for all his celebrity, his life remains somewhat of a mystery.

To mark the day, here are 15 interesting facts about St. Patrick's Day.

The largest St. Patrick's Day Parade is not held in Ireland. That honor belongs to New York City, where the annual St. Patrick's Day Parade draws more than a million spectators each year. St. Patrick's Day Facts

Although many people wear some form of green in honor of St. Patrick's Day, green was once considered an unlucky color in Ireland. St. Patrick's Day Facts

St. Patrick's Day is a national holiday in the Caribbean nation of Montserrat. St. Patrick's Day Facts

The city of Montreal, Canada, uses a shamrock in its city flag. The city of Montreal, Canada, uses a shamrock in its city flag. St. Patrick's Day Facts

There are roughly 33 million U.S. residents of Irish ancestry. That number is nearly 9 times the population of Ireland. There are roughly 33 million U.S. residents of Irish ancestry. That number is nearly 9 times the population of Ireland. St. Patrick's Day Facts

Blue was the original color associated with St. Patrick. St. Patrick's Day Facts

In Ireland, St. Patrick's Day has traditionally been a religious occasion. Until the 1970s, many stores and pubs were closed. Laws were changed in 1995. St. Patrick's Day Facts

The first recorded St. Patrick's Day parade didn't actually take place in Ireland, when on 17 March 1762, Irish soldiers serving in the English military marched through New York City. St. Patrick's Day Facts

St. Patrick is not the only patron saint of Ireland, both 'Brigid of Kildare' and 'Columba' are officially recognised as such. St. Patrick's Day Facts

The best day to find money on the streets of New York is 18 March: the day after St. Patrick's Day St. Patrick's Day Facts

It is said that on any given day 5.5 million pints of Guinness are drank around the world. But on St. Patrick's Day, the number more than doubles to 13 million pints. St. Patrick's Day Facts

Since the 1960's, the city of Chicago has been dyeing the Chicago river green in honour of St. Patrick's Day. Over 400,000 spectators watch as members of the local Plumbers Union add an orange powder (it turns green when it hits the water) into the river. It takes about 45 minutes to colour the river and the river stays green for up to 5 hours. St. Patrick's Day Facts

St. Patrick's Day only became a public holiday in Ireland in 1903, under the Bank Holiday (Ireland) Act 1903, an Act of the United Kingdom Parliament introduced by the Irish MP James O'Mara. St. Patrick's Day Facts

Johnny Cash wrote the popular song 'Forty Shades of Green'. The idea came to him as he looked down while flying over Ireland. St. Patrick's Day Facts

Nine men of Irish ancestry signed the Declaration of Independence. Nine men of Irish ancestry signed the Declaration of Independence. St. Patrick's Day Facts
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