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  • Writer's pictureJan Bishop

Do you have any St. Patrick's Day Traditions?

With St. Patrick's Day right around the corner, I started thinking about the traditions involved with the holiday. I remember being small and my mom would help make sure we wore our green to school so we wouldn't get pinched (see the photo at the end of my sister and me wearing our shamrocks.) We would have corned beef and cabbage for dinner. I continued those traditions with my own children. I don't have any Irish DNA, but it is still fun to celebrate the fun traditions surrounding St. Patrick's Day. Other traditions that many love includes a St. Patrick's Day Parade, baking Irish soda bread, and kissing someone who is Irish.

I decided it might be fun to trace the origins of some of the traditions. I found an article from Readers Digest that explain some. The thought behind many of these traditions is if we honor them, we will be granted "the luck of the Irish." I was surprised to discover that many of these traditions actually originated in America. In the article, she states that wearing green began during a political and cultural rebel uprising in 1798. Wearing green was a way to show your support for the republic. There is also a legend that leprechauns can't see green, if they see you, they will pinch you. And in the Americanized version, you can get pinched if you don't wear green. So, make sure you wear green!

It seems as if corned beef and cabbage are another one of these traditions which started here in America. Eating beef was rare, the Irish used their cows for milk. There was much more pork and bacon. The tradition of Irish soda bread appears to be more Irish, in true Irish soda bread, it is made with only four ingredients: flour, baking soda, buttermilk, and salt. The tradition includes making a cross on the top "to let the devil out."

The St. Patrick's Day parade is another tradition that has its start here in America. During the great famine in the 19th century, many Irishmen came to America. It is believed that parades were a way to encourage support for newcomers who were being discriminated against.

"Kiss me I'm Irish" Kissing someone Irish for luck appears to be no definitive source, the prevailing theory is that it refers to kissing the Blarney Stone in Ireland—so kissing an Irish person is the next best thing.

Traditions are a fun way to connect to your community, your family, and your friends. What traditions do you celebrate? and why? I encourage you to write down your traditions and your memories surrounding those traditions. Share them with your loved ones.


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Mar 09, 2023

Saw this on my computer and thought I would send it on over. A said that I loved looking for four leaf clovers. Here is a picture of me and my granddaughter, Rachel.

Jan Bishop
Jan Bishop
Mar 10, 2023
Replying to

Such a sweet picture!❤️ Thank you!


Mar 08, 2023

My mother loved this holiday. She is the one that started me down the toad of celebrating the different holiday traditions. I always wanted to catch a leprechaun and get a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. I’m attaching a picture of my mom in her later years wearing her green. Also, I love Irish blessings/sayings. My favorite thing I loved to do when I was a kid was look for four leafed clovers. l need all the luck I can get. 😄🍀.

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