St. Patrick’s Day Celebrations in the US: 8 Small Cities to Visit

St. Patrick’s Day Celebrations in the US: 8 Small Cities to Visit

February 02, 2023

Saint Patrick's Day is celebrated around the World on March 17. The celebrations in honor of the patron saint of Ireland have crossed borders and become an event beyond the territorial limits of the island.

One of the countries that celebrate Saint Patrick's it's the United States. In fact, it's considered the best place to celebrate St Patrick's Day in the world.

Why? Beyond the prerogative of the color green, shamrocks, and beers, Saint Patrick has become a popular date in the country. 

The Irish community takes the opportunity to celebrate it in style, and cities like Boston, New York, and Chicago raise the spirit!

But that's not all. There are small cities with big St Patrick's Day celebrations in the US. Caught your attention? Pay attention to the list!

St. Patrick’s Day: An Event Full of Curiosity

Before starting our route through the best small cities with the best St Patrick's Day celebrations in USA, we review some interesting facts about the festivity.

#1 – Saint Patrick's Name

Did you know that Saint Patrick was not Irish? 

His name was Maewyn Succat, and he was born in a small Scottish town in the late fourth century. 

He came to Ireland after escaping from some pirates. He was ordained a priest in France and changed his name to Patricius.

#2 – Green Everywhere

Green and beer are the hallmarks of a celebration that began as eminently Catholic. 

The order of Saint Patrick adopted the light blue color. Still, green for this festivity began to spread from the end of the 18th century, associated with the color of the shamrocks of the Irish independence movement.

#3 – Say No to Alcohol

For most of the 20th century, Saint Patrick's Day was considered a strictly religious holiday, pubs were closed on that Day, and alcohol was prohibited. The 1903 law was annulled in 1970, and beer joined the party, especially stout—the most widely consumed black variety in Ireland.

#4 – The First Saint Patrick’s Parade Was in…US

Curiously, the first St Patrick's Day parade in America occurred in Boston in 1737. It was certainly the oldest St Patrick's Day parade.

It came a bit later in Ireland: the first parade was held in Waterford in 1903, while Dublin joined the tradition in 1931.

#5 – An International Day!

Like we said in the beginning, Saint Patrick's is much more than Ireland, it's a global tradition that crosses borders. But why?

The years between 1846 and 1852 were challenging due to the Great Famine that made it impossible to live in Ireland. This event caused an Irish diaspora to survive.

There are Irish in every corner of the world.

Now that you know some of the curiosities that come along with this date, let's get back on track and return to the road cause there are small cities with a Big St. Patrick's Day celebration in the US waiting for our visit!

8 Small Cities in the US With a Big St. Patrick’s Day Celebration

Dayton, OH

Dayton Ohio St Patrick's Day T-Shirt

Saint Patrick's Day in this city is different. From Celtic dance performances to Irish celebrations, there's a party corner for everyone because some of the various fun and entertaining events are one of a kind.

And the food? Gosh! Complete your visit with corned beef, cabbage, Guinness, and green beer.

Parades, marching bands, pipers, hospitality, well… You're coming to Dayton, Ohio, right? Don't forget to suit up with your best Dayton St Patrick's Day t-shirt!

Binghamton, NY

Binghamton New York ST Patrick's Day T-Shirt

If you cannot travel to Ireland in time for St. Patrick's Day, the next best thing would be to celebrate in a city known as Binghamton, NY.

Binghamton is a small heart city in the NY State that began celebrating St Patrick's Day in the 1800s and has done so ever since.

Throughout the month, restaurants and pubs offer deals on food and drink while decking themselves in various Irish decorations. The entire city is decked out in green. Even the shamrock t-shirts are green for March.

O'Neil, Nebraska

O'Neil Nebraska St Patrick's Day T-Shirt

O'Neill, established by an Irish immigrant and named the "Irish Capital of Nebraska" by the governor in 1969, is the location of the World's giant shamrock. In addition, O'Neill was called the "Irish Capital of Nebraska."

People travel from all over the World to view the enormous shamrock, which has become a popular tourist destination recently. According to locals, there have even been marriage proposals and ceremonies held at the location.

Visitors flock to see the painting of the shamrock, O'Neill's grand parade, and other activities, which causes the city's population to double.

Time to say, suit up with a local St Patrick t-shirt and book your trip.

Savannah, GA

Savannah Georgia St Patrick's Day T-Shirt

Even though Savannah only has 140,000 people, the city is home to the eighth-largest St Patrick's Day parade in the World, including Ireland. Around a million people attend the parade every year. 

The parade was held for the first time in 1824, and nowadays, it's a three-hour extravaganza featuring Irish dancing, bagpipers dressed in kilts, local St Patrick t-shirts, and dozens of beer cans.

Apart from that, a reference to the "Greening of the Fountain," an event during which the fountain in Forsyth Park's historic district is painted an emerald green color, and the "Shamrock Run," which is a 5K run, a family-friendly celebration.

Let's make a trip to one of the best St Patrick's Day parades…

Scranton, PA

Scranton Pennsylvania Sy Patrick's Day T-Shirt

Be aware Scranton St Patrick's Day parade ranking will surprise you.

The Electric City hosts the sixth-largest St Patrick's Day parade in the United States. 

The event is the second largest in the United States when measured against the population ratio of the city with the highest attendance, Savannah. 

However, those are not the factors contributing to the greatness of the St Patrick's Day parade in Scranton. Food, drinks, and live music take the main stage!

The traditions are powerful in Scranton, PA. It shows pride in their Irish heritage. Even with the clothing, the locals fill the streets with green dresses, like shamrock t-shirts.

Besides, the sacred values are remembered in each celebration, filling the participants' joy.

Syracuse, NY

Syracuse New York St Patrick's Day T-Shirt

Orange predominates throughout the city of Syracuse for fifty-one weeks of the year. However, during the week of Saint Patrick's Day, the city of Salt Lake is covered in a lush green hue.

Tipperary Hill is home to a significant number of Syracuse's residents who can trace their roots back to Ireland, making the city the fifth-most Irish-populated town in the United States.

"Tipp Hill," as known by the locals, is so Irish that it is the only traffic light in the United States with a "Green-on-Top" signal, making it unique among similar signs.

Apart from the local sweet spots, at midnight on St. Patrick's Day, a giant shamrock is painted on the road in Syracuse. A pilgrimage follows this to Coleman's Irish Pub and its "Leprechaun Door."

If you are curious about this event, dress up for it. There are Syracuse St Patrick's Day t-shirts that you can wear and be part of the celebration.

Hot Springs, AR

Hot Springs Arkansas St Patrick's Day T-Shirt

The world's shortest St. Patrick's Day parade takes place in Hot Springs, which has a population of just 37,000 people and ranks only 12th in size among all the cities with a St. Patrick's Day celebration in the US.

Yes, the parade travels a shorter distance (98 feet). The annual "Measuring of the Route" kicks off the train, which is held along Bridge Street, the shortest street in the world. Insane, right?

Even though the parade is on the smaller side, the celebration itself is insignificant. Hot Springs is a good destination for attending live Irish music events featuring traditional Irish folk songs and dance tunes and learning more about the Irish heritage.

Think about it, If you have one shot, one Hot Springs St Patrick's Day t-shirt, you can do everything, even survive a 98 feet parade!

 Naperville, IL

Chi-Rish Flag T-Shirt

In 2020, Naperville, IL, was considered one of the best small cities with a St. Patrick's Day celebration in the US.

Three years later, and an “almost” beaten COVID-19 pandemic, the feeling and recognition are the same.

The ingredients are on the table for Irish heritage, good weather, friendly beer prices, good restaurants, and cheap hotels. Buy a local green St Patrick's Day t-shirt and get into the road!

Tips for Celebrating Saint Patrick’s Day

Before finishing your reading, here are some tips for enjoying the most of this occasion:

  • Learn about Irish heritage: Why is St Patrick's Day celebrated? This day is a celebration of Ireland's heritage and culture, so take some time to learn about the country's history, traditions, and customs.
  • Wear green: Wearing green is a traditional way to show your support for Ireland on Saint Patrick's Day. To help you out, browse through our St Patrick's Day collection.
  • Attend a parade: Many cities host Saint Patrick's Day parades, a great way to get into the holiday spirit.
  • Gastronomy: Try making traditional Irish dishes like corned beef, cabbage, Irish stew, or soda bread.
  • Be safe: If you intend to celebrate with alcohol, drink responsibly, avoid too much pub crawling, and have a designated driver.

Ready for St. Patrick’s Day Celebrations in the US in 2023?

Due to these cities' extensive Irish heritage, they are the perfect place to celebrate Saint Patrick's Day in the US.

Besides that, and most of all, the Irish-American community will be tremendously grateful.

So, whether you were born in one of these cities or are just visiting for a holiday, you should take advantage of the opportunity to participate in some of the most well-known cities with a St. Patrick's Day celebration in the US.

Therefore, get yourself a pint of Guinness and be part of the biggest St Patrick's Day celebrations in the world!

P.S. Are you interested in learning more about St. Patrick's Day? Check out the posts on our blog.

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