There are tons of different ways to mark Ireland’s internationally recognized feast holiday, St. Patrick’s Day.  It is an interesting national celebration that’s seemed to have gotten the whole world involved over the centuries.  Chicago dyes its river green and just last year they gave green water a shot in Trafalgar Square as well.  Another interesting tradition in the UK was a presentation of freshly cut shamrocks flown over by the Queen Mother and given to the Irish Guards.  Here in Canada, we’re proud to have the longest running St. Patrick’s Day parade in North America, on the go since 1824.  Given that Newfoundland isn’t exactly a young European settlement, here too have the celebrations long been shared, and the people that know how to do it best are the folks at O’Reilly’s.

They’re up to their 13th year in business and have celebrated St. Patrick’s Day with their patrons, old and new alike for every single one of them.  You might remember, they only moved into their current location about two years ago and they’re already into expansion.  When all is said and done, O’Reilly’s will be a two floor joint and will feature paintings that are being done by Derrick Holmes.  The carpentry is looked after by Paddy Mackey, who’ll have even more on his hands in the spring when they plan to do a full on exterior facelift to the building.  No less, even though the establishment is in the middle of renovations, they’re still going full steam ahead with their jam packed St. Patrick’s Day celebrations!

O’Reilly’s means business when they say celebrations too, with six back to back days planned, everything gets started on Thursday March 12 with the Pre-Paddy’s Day Bash featuring both The Punters and their special guest Fergus O’Byrne.  Not to mention, that night there will be reduced bar prices, food and prize giveaways.  Over the weekend, right up until Monday, March 16th – O’Reilly’s will welcome a sizeable cast of musical performers to its stage that include Greeley’s Reel, Tarahan, Dungarven, Siochana, Achara, Chris Hennessy, Bill Kelly and the Masterless Men.

Making sure to leave consideration to sleep in the next day, they’ve also planned a “Carvery” Lunch Buffet everyday from Friday to Tuesday for $15.00; and if you really want to challenge yourself “to get worm,” you can aim for the Annual Paddy’s Day Breakfast for the same price.  Serving up traditional Irish-Newfoundland breakfast specialties, there will be music by Fergus O’Byrne and his son that morning as well.

Essentially, O’Reilly’s has taken care of planning an entire mini-festival all its own – all you need do is pull up a stool.  Like the Chicago River tinted green, your Guinness will be as well.  And, by the way, Guinness has a sign that reads, “Everyone’s Irish on March 17th,” outside their distillery.  That seems to be the thing about St. Patrick’s Day; it totally doesn’t even matter if you’re Irish.  It’s just one big party!  It’s so big they’ve even got a “Win to Get In” promotion, the winner of which will be determined at the Thursday kick off event.  The main prize to set your sights on – a trip to Newfoundland to experience the O’Reilly’s mini-festival extravaganza celebrating St. Patrick’s Day, Newfoundland style.

For more information on exact event line ups or the Catch the Plane to Paddy’s Day promotion you can have a look at the O’Reilly’s Pub website at www.oreillyspub.com.

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