St Patricks Day

Paint the town green without restraint cause here comes St Patrick the Patron Saint!

St Patrick’s Day is here again,
So gather round with all your friends,
There’s music, laughter and Guinness too,
With a Pot o’ Gold beyond a rainbow’s view
The Leprechauns are all being cheeky,
Those cute little guys can really be sneaky,
The colour of choice is a nice shade of green,
So wear it with pride as that is the theme.

History:

Saint Patrick’s Day, is an Irish cultural and religious holiday held on March 17 which is recognised and
celebrated by many countries around the world. Although not born in Ireland but somewhere
in Roman Britain, Saint Patrick is Ireland’s most commonly recognised patron saint and
is celebrated as the one who introduced Christianity into the country and drove out
Paganism. Saint Patrick lived during the 5th century, he was the son of a deacon and his
grandfather was a priest in the Christian Church.

At the age of 16 St Patrick was kidnapped,
taken to Ireland and sold into slavery. Over the next 12 years he began to communicate
with God and eventually escaped from slavery. He traveled back to Britain, joined the
church and studied to be a priest.

In Irish folklore it is said that St Patrick was called back to
Ireland to spread the word of God and he used the shamrock as a representational tool in
his teaching of Christianity. Traditionally, St Patrick’s Day is a day of religious observation
in which Irish families would attend Mass to give their thanks for their patron saint.

They would also have a feast and perhaps listen to some Irish folk music; the wearing of the
green, shamrock decorations and drinking Guinness, which are all characteristic of a
modern day St Patrick’s Day festival, are of American origin and are a celebration of Irish
culture and heritage.

Trivia:

1. Green has not always been the primary colour associated with St Patrick’s Day, which
colour was originally used?

Answer: Blue

2. In what year did St Patrick’s Day become a public holiday in Ireland?

Answer: 1903

3. The shortest St Patrick’s Day parade in Ireland is in Dripsey, Cork and travels only 100
yards. What does the parade travel between?

Answer: The village’s two pubs

4. On any given day more than 5.5 million pints of Guinness are consumed around the
world. How many pints are consumed on St Patrick’s Day?

Answer: 13 million pints of Guinness

5. Which river in America is annually dyed green on St Patrick’s Day?

Answer: The Chicago River

6. What is the traditional food of St Patrick’s Day?

Answer: Corned Beef and Cabbage

St Patrick’s Day Badges
Create badges to wear during the St Patrick’s day celebrations using white cardboard
circles, images of green shamrocks, leprechauns and pots of gold. Green, white &
orange ribbon, paper and tissue paper will also bring your ensembles to life.

Potato Toss
Using a hoop and a bucket of potatoes, participants must stand behind a line and aim to throw potatoes so they land
inside the hoop. To keep the game moving quick use a maximum of 5 potatoes per person!

Irish Food Feast & Guinness Tasting
Why not prepare a feast of traditional Irish food with pints of Guinness or non-alcoholic drinks with green food colouring to wash it all down?
Suggestions include:
• Corned Beef & Cabbage
• Irish Stew
• Boxty (Irish potato pancake)
• Colcannon (mashed potatoes & cabbage dish)
• Coddle (pork sausages, bacon, onion & potato dish)
• Spotted Dog (cross between a cake and a bread)
• Shamrock shaped cookies
• Gold wrapped chocolate coins
• Irish coffee

Decorating a rainbow with a pot of gold
Using brown cardboard, cut out a pot shape, glue this onto a large white piece of
cardboard. Decorate the top of the pot with circles of gold foil to represent coins. Then
either freehand draw or paint a rainbow around/behind the pot or using strips of coloured
paper or crumpled pieces of coloured tissue paper to create the rainbow.

Irish slang guessing game
Create teams then ask them to come up with the meaning of some typical Irish slang:
Example – “We had a bit of ‘gas’ yesterday”…. (Meaning: yesterday we had fun)
Example – “We’ll need to call a ‘jo maxi’ later”…. (We need to call a taxi later)
Some useful websites for Irish slang:
http://www.slang.ie/
http://www.dublin1850.com/general/4mymofo.html
http://suziehq.hubpages.com/hub/IrishSlangExplained

Other Ideas:
• Attend local performances or hire music/dancing groups to perform
traditional Irish concerts

• Create and publish a collection of limericks and have a public reading.

• Hold your own St Patrick’s day parade, with costumes, music, dancing
and decorations.