Tales of a Midwest Lutheran on the East Coast

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Lessons in Culture: St. Patrick's Day

I remember in grade school, there was a holiday we decorated and celebrated for between Valentine's Day and Easter. We put up shamrocks and wore green, and then forgot about it. Not so around here. Valentine's Day was barely here and gone, and suddenly we see green everywhere - not just the shocking amount of daffodils coming up already, but green decorations for St. Patrick's Day. 

St. Patrick's Day is a big thing around here, I think, because people around here actually are Irish. In massive quantities. This is also evidence by the fact that there are more large Catholic churches around here than I have seen before. (The other half of people who live here are Italian, it seems like.) It is not actually St. Patrick's Day yet and already an outsider such as myself can tell that it is a big deal, and will be a big deal. I was about to see this first hand when I went to the annual St. Patrick's Day parade in Hamilton. It was a big day of education for me. 

Beer and children were the norm.

At least four bagpipe bands marched by.

There are three different Irish Dance studies in and around Hamilton. 

Mummers are a big thing around here too. Check out these crazy costumes!

This about sums it up. 

...and a giant cow, for good measure. This one's for you, Grandpa! 

It was both fun and fascinating at the same time. Here are two things I take away - we probably won't be going out anywhere on St. Patrick's Day (because of the crowds) and I feel now that I should own more green. 

1 comment:

  1. Old Lutheran always does a Lutheran/Irish St. Patrick's Day T-shirt. Chris and I collect them. ;-) This year's also comes in protestant orange! :-)