Top o the morning to you. Finally it’s St. Patrick’s Day—and once again Chicago is pulling out all the stops. The original St. Patrick’s celebration began in Ireland in the 1600s as a relatively quiet one-day break from Lent to honor their patron saint, Patrick, with feasting and alcohol.
It seems the holiday gets bigger each year, with the Windy City taking a back seat to no one when it comes to partying. Among the many celebrations taking place today is one of the most authentic at the IRISH HERITAGE CENTER. Two good things about this daylong party are that you don’t have to be Irish to attend and it is a real bargain at $10 a head.
If you are Irish and Catholic or just Catholic and not Irish you may want to start the day with 11:30a.m. Mass. Otherwise, you may want to wait until 1p.m. and then come for the rest of the activities that extend into the evening. There will be Irish dancing, song, food, children’s activities, and drinks.
The Center boasts a 658-seat theatre, library, museum, art gallery, authentic Irish pub, dance practice studios, meeting rooms and banquet rooms for parties. Today’s party will be held in the pub, known as The Fifth Province, where you can grab a pint and enjoy the festivities. The menu offers typical pub food including fish and chips, corned beef sandwiches and Irish sausage.
1p.m. to 11p.m. 4626 N. Knox Ave. (773) 282 7035. Free parking is available.
OTHER TRADITIONAL CHOICES.
Over 50 years of tradition make this legendary Irish Pub on Chicago’s Gold Coast a great spot to ring in the holiday. Butch McGuire’s St. Patrick’s celebration started out with a few shamrocks and green beer in 1961 but quickly grew to a full out over-the-top spectacular with every inch of the pub covered with Irish decor. Enjoy the casual pub menu and grab a beer or a green river. 20 W. Division, (312) 337 9080. Metered parking on Division and Dearborn, if you’re lucky.
FADO’S…A TASTE OF IRELAND ON GRAND.
Both the inside and outside of Fado Irish Pub will make you feel like you are in Ireland. Today’s celebration starts at 9:30a.m. and goes into the wee hours. There’s all the Irish Pub food favorites along with what many say is the best Guinness in Chicago. The drink menu also offers a selection of other Irish beers like Harp, Smithwicks and Kilkenny, proper Irish coffees, Baileys Irish cream, and a wide selection of Irish whiskeys. The live-music line up begins at 2p.m. with the Shannon Rovers (pipers) taking the stage at 7p.m. followed by Midnight Nappertandy with Celtic Rock. Cover charge $10 after 4p.m. 100 W. Grand, (312) 836 0066.