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Happy St. Paddy's Day!

St. Patrick's Day is a pretty big deal here in Chicago.
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But why/what are we celebrating?  (Let's just pretend people are celebrating something besides the fact that spring is approaching.)

If someone asked me what St. Patrick did and why we celebrate him, I would respond that he removed the snakes from Ireland because I do not know the real answer.  And that answer is in fact a MYTH!  No, there are not snakes on Ireland, but there never have been.

So what did St. Patrick do?

He converted a bunch of people to Christianity and used a shamrock to do so.  He used the three leaves to represent the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.  He was actually born in England and was kidnapped to Ireland at 16 to be a slave to tend sheep.  He went back and forth a couple times before staying in Ireland.  He died March 17, 461.  

He was mostly forgotten until centuries later mythology grew and he became the patron saint of Ireland.

Hmmm...ok.  Well why do we celebrate it in the US?

"Saint Patrick's Day was basically invented by Irish-Americans." around 1762.  With immigrants wanting to honor their roots and doing little marches, evolving into parades.  And wearing green became a way to show commitment to Ireland.

I really hadn't heard of St. Patrick's Day being a big deal until my brother went to Rolla for college and the boys grew out some form of beards (this is before they were popular) and then they would shave after St. Paddy's.  AND THEN.  I moved to Chicago and it became a very big deal.

Now my brother lives in Savannah and he keeps saying Savannah has the second largest St. Patrick's day celebration and Chicago is three.  I was surprised by this, but whatever.  Well, I looked it up.  NYC is 1.  Chicago is 2.  Savannah is 3.  Boom.



p.s. Apparently St. Patty's day is wrong as it is short for Patricia.  Paddy's day is short for Patrick.


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