Here's how St Patrick's Day will be celebrated across the country

We’ve all the details of festivals and parades that are worth checking out...

Here's how St Patrick's Day will be celebrated across the country


Cork City plans to celebrate the strength of community and diversity that shaped Cork into the city it is today with its theme ‘A City of Community, Culture and Commerce’.

To celebrate 100 years of the Ford company in Cork, parade grand marshal and celebrity-chef Rachel Allen and Lord Mayor Des Cahill, fresh from his meeting President Donal Trump, will lead the procession in a Ford Model-T.

Ten vintage vehicles including a Fordson tractor, Cortina and Mustang will also feature in the parade.

Lord Mayor of Cork Des Cahill in an iconic Model T Ford with members of Dowtcha Puppets. Picture: Clare Keogh
Lord Mayor of Cork Des Cahill in an iconic Model T Ford with members of Dowtcha Puppets. Picture: Clare Keogh

Performance group Macnas plan on unleashing a 3.5 m high ‘Boy Explorer’ who will chase a giant butterfly through the city streets.

Waterford-based group Spraoi created ‘The Copperhead’ as part of its contribution to the parade, a ‘trash percussion’ float based around the legacy of the copper mines in Allihies, West Cork.

Internationally acclaimed Cork puppeteers Dowtcha Puppets will also feature in the parade.

Together with a group of young Cork people, the group have imagined a futuristic community, to be represented with its ‘Future Culture’ float.

And also paying homage to Ford, Dowtcha have created a float celebrating the company’s legacy in Cork, including a giant Henry Ford puppet.

Over the weekend, a pop-up Patrick’s Festival Market will take place in Emmet Place from 10am to 5pm on Saturday and Sunday, promising to offer some of the country’s best street food.

The Lee Sessions, a series of free trad music gigs, will also take place in venues across the city centre from Friday to Sunday.


Jully Nevado, Hugh Brown and St Patrick at Custom House Quay to launch the St Patrick’s Day festival 2017. Picture: Gareth Chaney Collins
Jully Nevado, Hugh Brown and St Patrick at Custom House Quay to launch the St Patrick’s Day festival 2017. Picture: Gareth Chaney Collins

Half a million visitors are expected to line the streets of Dublin this St Patrick’s Day to celebrate ‘Ireland You Are’ — a celebration of “a culturally diverse, complex and brave society, notwithstanding its challenges”.

Led by grand marshal Olympic silver medallist Annalise Murphy, musicians, dancers and performers will march along the streets of the capital.

The parade promises a variety of performances themed around faerie stories, ancient mythical tribes and trailblazing pirates, to name but a few.

Visitors are urged to make the most of the long weekend with a four-day festival featuring 30 events spread across the four days.

Kicking off this evening, it will see music, film, poetry and theatre events taking place across the city until Sunday.

Organisers ask the public to take note of the changes to the parade’s route this year — the parade will now come down the east side of O’Connell Street, on the same side as Cleary’s, before proceeding on Westmoreland Street.


In recognition of the city’s ‘European Green Leaf 2017’ this year the parade in Galway will highlight its commitment to the environment, covering topics like waste recycling, nature, biodiversity, energy efficiency, smarter travel, water and air quality.

Live music will take place on the Eyre Square stage tomorrow afternoon and a series of family-friendly events will take place on Saturday and Sunday.

Parade highlights include Galway Arts Centre, Colours Street Theatre, An Taibhdhearc Theatre and Galway Theatre Festival with community groups such as Foróige and The Russian Culture Club creating a kaleidoscope of Galway’s rich mix of cultural and ethnic diversity.

The parade will come to a grand finalé with local heroes Macnas presenting their youth ensemble before Gamelan na Gaillimhe chime the end of the parade with their Indonesian gongs.


St Patrick’s Day kicks off with a bang in Kerry at 6am on Friday morning in Dingle, with a musical parade around the town led by Dingle’s Fife and Drum band.

Later that day, at 1m the St Patrick’s Day parade will proceed through the town.

The parade in Tralee gets underway at 12 noon on John Joe Sheedy Road, promising to be a celebration of sport in the town.

This year, Killarney will be celebrating St Patrick’s day with a parade themed around diversity, kicking off at 2pm from Fitzgerald Stadium.


With more than 80,000 people expected to flock to the streets of Limerick City, the art of storytelling takes centre stage on St Patrick’s Day with its theme of ‘Our stories, this is where we belong’.

The parade will be led by teenager Luke Culhane, the creator of ‘Create No Hate’ a viral anti-cyberbullying campaign that won the 14-year-old Limerick Person of the Year 2016.

Ireland’s only international band championship takes place in Limerick Sunday 19, from noon from Pery Square.


The country has Waterford to thank for having the day off this week: it was the first city to declare the day a national holiday.

The theme of the city’s parade this year is ‘Do it the Greenway’ a celebration of the upcoming opening of the Waterford Greenway, a 45km route encompassing the route of the disused railway line from Dungarvan to the city.

The parade kicks off from the Glen at 1pm, continuing down to the Quay, onto The Mall, and finishing on Parnell Street.

Parade start times at a glance

Dublin start time: 12pm from Parnell Square, Dublin 1.

Cork: 1pm, starting from South Mall to Merchant’s Quay, via St Patrick’s Street.

Limerick: 12pm, starting from O’Connell Avenue (Wolfe Tone Street junction) making its way through the city centre.

Waterford: 1pm starting from the Glen, finishing on Parnell Street.

Galway: 11.30am starting from Lower Dominick Street and finishing at Galway County Council Buildings.


From the clash of the ash to maritime parades, there is lots to do and see around the county on.

Ballincollig: Parade starts at 3pm, on the Main Street. Ballincollig will also be bidding to set a world record for the biggest and loudest clash of the ash as part of the parade.

Bandon: Parade starts at 2.30pm.

Blarney: Parade starts at 3.30pm.

Castletownbere: Parade starts at 3pm, proceeding to the West End and back into the Square.

Cobh: Parade starts at 3.30pm, from the Low Road by Cobh Heritage Centre.

Clonakilty: Parade starts at 3pm, from Faxbridge to Western Road.

Fermoy: Parade starts at 11am from Cavanagh’s, Cork Road.

Kinsale: Kinsale Maritime Parade takes place in the harbour at 7.30pm tonight, while the parade starts at 4pm tomorrow from the New Road.

Macroom: Parade starts at 3pm.

Mallow: Starts at 2.30pm from Park Road, proceeding down Main Street.

Midleton: Starts at 3pm, Main Street, finishing at the AIB Bank.

Mitchelstown: Parade starts at 1pm start, from George’s Street.

Skibbereen: Parade starts at 4pm from the Children’s Playground finishing in the Fairfield car park. Firework display from Kennedy Bridge at the West Cork Hotel at 7.30pm.

Youghal: Parade starts at 3pm on North Main Street.

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From florist to fraudster, leaving a trail of destruction from North Cork, to Waterford, to Clare, to Wexford and through the midlands ... learn how mistress of re-invention, Catherine O'Brien, scammed her way around rural Ireland.

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