Chicago dives deep into St. Patrick’s Day festivities, this is a city that definitely believes in the green. Celebrating Irish heritage in Chicago means not just one, but three parades. The granddaddy of them all, the downtown Chicago St. Patrick’s Day Parade is the longest-running,
with a history that reaches back all the way to 1843, when there were 775 Irish immigrants who marched down Clark St. Today, the downtown parade is the biggest and rowdiest of the parades, with thousands of participants and revelers.
The Southside Irish St. Patrick’s Day Parade is the second longest-running parade and the biggest community-based parade outside of Dublin. Chicago’s extensive Southside Irish roots are displayed with musicians, dancers, bands and of course, food.
The city’s third parade is the Northwest Side Irish Parade, which celebrates 19 years of marching through the Norwood Park community. This family-friendly event features music, games and dancers.
A St. Patrick’s Day event that is singular to Chicago and a beloved tradition since 1962, is the dyeing of the Chicago River green. A special dye with ingredients that are a closely guarded secret, is poured into the river the morning before the downtown Chicago St. Patrick’s Day Parade.
Food and drinks are always a special part of any St. Patrick’s Day celebration. Many Irish pubs and restaurants offer special deals and events in honor of the Celtic holiday. However you choose to celebrate, make sure you wear your brightest green attire.