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© Patrick Fore / Unsplash
© Patrick Fore / Unsplash

How to Get Ready for St. Patrick's Day in NYC

Picture of Julia Goicochea
Updated: 14 March 2018

St. Patrick’s Day is New York City’s biggest party, we mean, holiday, of the season. As with any good celebration, excitement for the holiday is palpable in the days leading up to the event. From blowing your own beer glass to snagging free Irish literature, here are the best things to do to get ready for St. Patrick’s Day in New York City.

Enroll in a stout and whiskey tasting class

Education has never been so enticing as it is at Williamsburg’s favorite cheese counter, Bedford Cheese Shop. Enrolling in the shop’s “Stout and Whiskey!” class will earn you two stouts and two whiskeys along with four perfectly paired cheeses. Fair warning: taking place on March 14 at 6:30 p.m., this quality class may ruin the holiday’s grubby green beer for you.

Attend a ceremonial keg tapping of Guinness

Get your Guinness fix early at Lower East Side biergarten, Loreley. The outdoor bar’s weekend-long St. Patrick’s Day celebration kicks off March 15 at 8 p.m. with a ceremonial keg tapping of Guinness. Specials on the beloved stout, Irish whiskey, and green beer follow the ceremony and last through March 18.

Embark on a three-day pub crawl

Imbibe, we mean, embark, on a weekend-long pub crawl featuring more than 50 participating bars. From March 16 through March 18, this annual event will offer drink specials at Irish watering holes including Blarney Stone and Plug Uglies, as well as non-Irish bars such as Local 138.

Discover the history of the Irish in New York

Every day leading up to the holiday, the Lower East Side’s Tenement Museum is offering its “Irish Outsiders” tour. Before you attend the famous St. Patrick’s Day parade, visit the restored home of Irish immigrant family, the Moores, as they prepare for the parade themselves — in 1869 New York. Touching on prejudice and pride in the Irish-American experience, this tour puts the holiday in a new light.

Keiko Niwa

© Keiko Niwa / Courtesy of Lower East Side Tenement Museum

Get free Irish literature

This St. Patrick’s Day, or, Book Day, New York City’s Irish Arts Center wants you to think before you drink. Encouraging New Yorkers of all backgrounds to “re-Joyce, go Wilde” and “get lit,” the center distributes thousands of books by Irish and Irish-American authors for free at pop-ups in all five city boroughs.

Line your stomach with traditional Irish eats

If you follow one rule this St. Patrick’s Day, make it greens before green beer. Prior to joining any of the city’s many beer crawls, first line your stomach with traditional Irish eats at Molly’s. Established in 1960, the pub and restaurant’s corned beef and cabbage and bangers and mash have been helping revelers soak up Guinness for more than 50 years.

Blow your own beer glass

Go green this St. Patrick’s Day with a reusable beer glass you’ll blow yourself at this 11 a.m. “St Patty’s Beer Mug-Making” class. Open to all experience levels, this hands-on tutorial at Brooklyn Glass will have you molding 2,100-degree molten glass into your very own beer stein, just in time to raise your Guinness with a “sláinte.”