25+ Ways to Celebrate St Patrick’s Day in Chicago

Share

Officially, St Patrick’s Day is celebrated on March 17th, but this year the main festivities in Chicago take place on Saturday March 12th. Enjoy some of the best ways to celebrate St Patrick’s Day in Chicago. Sláinte!

Chicago River Dyeing

The first time the river was tinted green was in 1962, due to a suggestion from the local plumber’s union. When it first turned green, it stayed green for almost a month.  Their formula for the dye remains a secret to this day.  Every year, the dyeing begins at 9 a.m. with union members working from different boats and is usually done the Saturday before St. Patrick’s Day. The best views for this are located on the bridges between State and Columbus. With a tradition that is nearly half a century old, make sure to cross it off when visiting Chicago. 

Chicago Skyline  

The Chicago River isn’t the only thing that turns green around St Patrick’s Day. Many buildings such as the Merchandise Mart, Civic Opera House, Board of Trade Building, Soldier Field, Wrigley Building, Gaelic Park, Auditorium Theatre, and 875 North Michigan Avenue have all been known to join in on the festivities as well.

Parades, Block Parties & Pub Crawls

St Patrick’s Day Parades

Throughout the day there are several Irish parades such as the Chicago St. Patrick’s Day parade, South Side Parade, and the Northwest Side Irish Parade. While the Chicago parade is on Saturday, both the Northwest and Southside are on the 13th. These parades all celebrate Ireland’s rich traditions and culture by having troops of Irish step dancers, marching bands bagpipes, colorful floats waving their Irish Flags. 

St Patrick’s on the Lake

Celebrate St Patrick’s Day at the iconic Lakefront Restaurant, and enjoy stunning views of Lake Michigan and the Chicago skyline with a nice side of Irish music, food, and drinks.

Old St. Pat’s Shamrock’n the Block

Old St Patrick’s Day is hosting a pop-up Irish Pub from noon to 6:30 pm on March 12th at the corner of Adams & DesPlaines Street in the West Loop. There will be live music, Irish dance, bagpipes, Irish food, kids activities and much more!

Irish Heritage & Culture

Irish American Heritage Center

Irish roots run deep in Chicago. And what better way to learn this history than at the Irish American Heritage Center? The center offers tours to help bring awareness to Irish culture and traditions through gatherings, festivals, music, theater, literature, and language.

Beverly Neighborhood

Rooted deep in Irish culture, this neighborhood is proud to display it for all during the St. Patrick’s holiday season. For over 40 years, this neighborhood has been home to the South Side Irish Parade. You can also check out the Shamrock Our Block contest where Beverly residents compete for the best outdoor decorations. 

Grab some Grub

The Corned Beef Factory

For a taste of Ireland in Chicago, feast on a classic dish of corned beef and cabbage—with a side of potatoes and baked Irish soda bread of course. The Corned Beef Factory, operating since 1948, has been named one of the best places to get a corn beef sandwich by the Chicago Tribune. 

This location also serves more than just your classic corned beef with spicy dijon mustard. If you’re feeling adventurous, try the “Tom and Jerry,” filled with pastrami and finished with their famous corned beef. Or stick with a classic Reuben sandwich. Either way, be sure to come hungry.

Cone Gourmet Ice Cream

After you’re finished with the savory, move on to something sweet. Cone Gourmet Ice Cream, owned by an Irish-American family, offers a variety of Irish inspired ice creams and other delicious desserts. On our must-try list is their Paddy Melt, a donut and ice cream take on the American classic. You also can’t go wrong with The Shamrock, a soft serve ice cream with Lucky Charms. 

Beatrix

Beatrix’s pastry counter is offering assorted St. Paddy’s Day cookies including shamrocks, a pot of gold or a leprechaun hat.

Bub City 

Bub City in River North and Rosemont will offer food and drink specials including a Corned Beef Reuben made with a House-Brined Corned Beef, 1000 Island Dressing, Swiss Cheese and Sauerkraut served on griddled rye with a side of Golden Waffle Fries. 


Hub 51

Hub 51 is joining the St. Patrick’s Day festivities with food and drink specials including Potato Debris: Deep Fried Idaho Potatoes, Tillamook Sharp Cheddar, Bacon, Green onion, Crema and a Hot Corned Beef Sandwich made with Vienna Corned Beef, Homemade Sauerkraut, Swiss Cheese, Whole Grain Mustard, Rye Bread.

On to the Pub!

Since Chicago has a rich Irish culture finding an Irish bar is not such a hard thing to do.  Here are some of our favorites.

Charm’d Pop Up

Charm’d – The Magical Irish Pop-Up is an enchanting, over-the-top, multi-room, multi-level magical Irish experience.  Featuring wall-to-wall Irish decor, lucky charms, multiple bars, social photo-ops and a whole lot of leprechaun mischief.

Galway Arms

A native of Cork City, Ireland, Paddy Homan is an Irish Tenor who organizes and performs at The Galway Arms Sunday Session every week. Paddy was awarded Best Newcomer of the Decade 2000-2010 by Live Ireland ‘Best of the Decade’ awards and has a fantastic reputation within the Irish community.

Fado

According to many connoisseurs, Fado has the best pint of Guinness in the city. But that’s not all this classic Irish pub has to offer. Try their brilliant European and craft beer lineup, housemade cocktails and tasty pub fare. True to form, Fado is also a popular hangout for fútbol fanatics.

The Kerryman

This place is full of history. Originally known as McGovern Saloon, it was once a notorious gangster hangout, and in 1987 became the home of the original Chicago punk movement. Today, it’s widely known  as Chicago’s liveliest Irish bar, right in the heart of River North. Highly recommended by the local Irishmen and women, the Kerryman is considered a little piece of Ireland right here in the Windy City.

Chief O’Neill’s

Located in Avondale is Chief O’ Neill’s. Named after Francis O’Neill who is known for preserving Irish music in America, this pub keeps Irish tradition alive with Irish beers on tap and traditional Irish performances. It is known for its huge green beer garden and Sunday breakfast buffet. 

Emerald Loop

This bar is in downtown Chicago that features craft beers and cocktails, Irish and American food, green beer, outside dining, and Irish hospitality. 

River Shannon

In Lincoln Park, this Irish bar lives by the rule of Irish hospitality that “You’re a guest on the first night; after that, you’re a regular. Furry friends are welcomed, free popcorn all around, and with classic Irish beers, you cannot miss this bar.

The Embassy Public House

The newest Irish bar in town is located in the heart of Little Italy. It is the perfect place to enjoy a traditional Irish breakfast (served all day) or fish and chips, with a fresh pint of Guinness or cider of course. The Embassy also happens to be a great place to catch a game!

Cork and Kerry at the Park

In the shadow of Guaranteed Rate Field, the Bridgeport home of the White Sox , lies Cork and Kerry At the Park. The pub features a large beer and drink selection, traditional Irish meals, and other Chicago classic comfort foods.  

Corcoran’s Grill and Pub

Stop in for a green beer, Irish food, and some whiskey at this Old Town pub. There will be Irish dancers, bagpipes, and Irish music. The perfect place to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day in true Irish fashion. 

Stay the night

Some Chicago hotels offer prime locations on the River, delicious food and joyful festivities for both the river dyeing on March 12th and the holiday, on March 17th.

The Sheraton Grand Chicago Riverwalk offers striking views, Irish-inspired food specials, green beers and Powers Irish coffee and live music. Reserve one of the river view rooms, starting at $256.

The Royal Sonesta Chicago Downtown is perfect for families, couples and solo travelers celebrating the holiday. Book one of the hotel’s river view rooms to watch the festivities over the weekend or on the holiday starting at $200. Post river dyeing or on the 17th enjoy a delicious meal at Hoyt’s a modern American tavern, seamlessly fusing reimagined Midwestern comfort food with a warm social vibe.

Renaissance Chicago Downtown Hotel‘s Raised Urban Rooftop Bar is hosting a river dyeing party on Saturday, March 12 from 8 to 10 a.m. which includes St. Patrick’s Day inspired breakfast, green beer, mimosas and bloody mary’s, festive green beads and more! Tickets are available via Tock for $90 per person.

The Radisson Blu Aqua Hotel is offering a St. Patrick’s Day package for $269.00 per night, featuring holiday-themed party favors, 50% off parking, and a $25 food & beverage credit.

Sweat it out

Shamrock Shuffle 8K

This classic 8K run has been going on for four decades. The Bank of America Shamrock Shuffle is a symbol of spring in Chicago. This year is no exception, with the Shamrock Shuffle starting on Sunday, March 20, 2022. The race starts in the Loop and finishes in Grant Park. Registration is on a first-come-first-served basis.

Please do keep in mind local COVID-19 guidelines when celebrating.

0 Comments
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
0
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x
()
x