There's a lot to love about the Irish. They are a friendly bunch who would happily give you the shirts off their backs. They're charming with their banter and they like to sing. When things go wrong or they're in danger, they look to the angels and saints.
St Patrick was a missionary and bishop highly regarded as the founder of Christianity in Ireland. He instilled good values in the masses and wrote an autobiography, one of two literary works. The 17th of March is the day St Patrick died. The date has become a celebration of his life and Irish culture. A feast is part of festivities around the globe, along with the downing of Guinness, dressing in green and a parade.
A number of parties and events are happening around town in Sydney on St Patrick's Day (a Saturday this year) and revelry will surely run across the weekend for many a partygoer. All are welcome to the following merrymaking, Irish or not. Must haves are a sense of humour and willingness for a good time.
The Green Quarter
This event is a family-friendly fun day in Moore Park on Sunday the 18th, from noon. It will feature marching bands, bagpipers, Irish dancers and musicians performing everything from traditional folk music and Celtic rock (Mark Oats, Blackwater) to folk punk (The Bottlers) and then some, that will have you enjoying the craic.
There's a special focus on children's activities with a parade (adults can join in too), a play area with bouncing castles, and face painting. A performance tent sees a harpist, Irish dancers and storytelling, whilst a creative tent will see the littlies making masks and souvenirs. Field events, such as sack races and spud and spoon races add to the liveliness of this event.
Note places for the parade and field events are limited, so sign up here as early as possible so you don't miss out. Be sure to wear some green and don your best outfit as there are prizes up for grabs.
A variety of food and drink stalls will cater to all tastes and keep you refreshed, whilst an Irish bar will be stocked with favourites. Traditional Irish goods and local craft are available for purchase too.
Amenities onsite include ATM's and water drinking fountains.
Organised by the Sydney St Patrick's Day Organisation (a not for profit group), this event is free. Gold coin donations are welcome and aid in the continuance of this event in future years.
Location: The Entertainment Quarter, 122 Lang Rd, Moore Park
The Merc is Sydney's oldest Irish pub and it has a whole weekend of craic planned, starting with a breakfast (from 7am) on the big day. Tickets are $80 per person for this traditional Irish event that includes a hearty meal, an Irish coffee and a 3hr beverage package. Plenty of Irish dancing and music accompany the colourful hospitality. Book early by calling 9247 3570 and avoid disappointment.
On both Saturday and Sunday, for the first time this year, there will be a George Street takeover. The Merc has been granted access to The Rocks market space and will turn it into pop-up bars and food stalls. Irish dancing, a face painter and a magician will be in company here with musicians to the likes of The Soniks, Blackwater and Shindig.
If you're partying into the evening on the Saturday, be sure to mosey on down to the harbour and see the Opera House glowing green. It will be the first time that it lights up for St Patrick's Day since 2014.
This two-storey Irish jungle-themed whisky bar really gets into the spirit of Paddy's Day and will be opening early at noon, serving up steak and Guinness pies, spuds with Guinness gravy, and $1 oysters, along with $5 Guinness and $5 Jameson Irish whiskey, all until 3pm. A Jameson cocktail list, more whisky, beers, wine and cider will keep the party going.
Rover regulars don't fret as their famed sausage rolls and Ploughman's boards will still be available until the ante is upped with staff taking to the bar top and living up to the 'wild' in this bar's name.
Live music will come from Gypsy folk band The Button Collective, old time string folk band Narrownecks and duo Sweet Jelly Rolls, getting the foot stomping happening.
Dust off those boots and get there early to avoid the line and secure a spot.
This inner-west pub is the place to head to on St Pat's Day for shenanigans that see you playing Luck O' the Irish games with pints of Guinness as prizes. Traditional Irish music will get you jigging along and, for $16, a delicious beef and Guinness pie topped with leek and potato Colcannon will fill your belly up and soak up some of the alcohol.
It's all on at the front bar, from 5pm to 7pm. Just look for the leprechauns, shamrocks and festive green bunting adorning the counter.
Entry is free. No booking is necessary, just roll up for fun.