By Emily Money
Everyone seems to enjoy the “luck of the Irish” every March 17, Saint Patrick’s Day. After all, who doesn’t love getting decked out in green, eating and drinking (for those over 21, of course!) with friends, and watching parades? But how many people know what the holiday is really about?
“I really don’t know what it’s about,” said junior Ashley Carrera. “I just think it’s amazing to see people celebrating.”
The celebration does have a reason, however. The Irish holiday was originally created to commemorate the death of Saint Patrick and celebrate religion and culture in Ireland. It was made an official Christian feast day in the 1600s, and is a public holiday in the Republic of Ireland, Northern Ireland, Newfoundland, Labrador, and Montserrat.
Although not an official holiday in the United States, that does not prevent Americans from celebrating.
“On Saint Patrick’s Day I go to Fort Wayne, Indiana, to the Green’s Festival. It’s where they dye the river green and they let us kids help,” said junior Jordyn Trafzer.
Green is a common symbol every March 17, as well as festive shamrocks and leprechauns. But why?
Shamrocks are the national emblem of Ireland because of the legend that Saint Patrick had used it to explain the doctrine of the Trinity and other parts of Christianity. It is now a common good luck symbol and represents the beginning of spring.
According to legend, leprechauns are mischievous Irish fairies that would give treasure hunters a pot of gold if caught. They are a common symbol every Saint Patrick’s Day.
Although the color of Saint Patrick was actually blue, the color was switched to green in the nineteenth century. Wearing green is seen as a tribute to Ireland, and is also said to bring the wearer luck. Beware; the tradition of pinching people that did not wear green on Saint Patrick’s Day is still practiced now!
“I don’t really do anything in the way of celebrating, but it’s great to see people get enthusiastic about celebrating Irish heritage,” said sophomore Keegan Hawes.
Central is sure to see huge displays of green this Monday. Just remember to stay safe and have fun while searching for your pot of gold this Saint Patrick’s Day!