It’s a day when the whole town comes together to celebrate our Irishness and indulge in more than a little Paddywhackery.
Yep, the Greystones St. Patrick’s Day Parade is one great big party. And like any great big party, it’s good to have a plan. And an escape route.
Given just how shy and retiring we Irish are, it’s great to have that one day a year when we can let our few remaining hairs down and, hey, maybe even have a scoop or two.
What the hell, it’s Paddy’s Day.
It’s also the one day of the year when pale-skinned ginger guys with glasses can really turn on the Irish charm with women way, way out of their league.
So, here’s to another crackin’ March 17th, with, eh, sunny weather and sunny Greystonians all sporting sunny dispositions for the day.
If you want to start the day right, grab yourself a traditional Paddy’s Big Breakfast down at the Scout’s Hall – from 9am to 10.30am; read all about it here, and book your spothere. Later, the kids can get their faces painted for free – up at FourFront Games from 10am to 12pm, and at SuperValu from 10.30am to 2.30pm.
Oh, and how could we forget – to really get yourself in the Paddy mood for Sunday, watching Ireland play Wales on an life-size screen on the Saturday afternoon at The Whale might just get the ancestral blood flowing.
The whole town is going a little Paddy crazy for the weekend, in fact, with Daata open from 11am on the big day, Chakra are open on Sunday and Monday from 1pm to 9pm, Something Nice rolling out tri-coloured sundaes and wibbly-wobbly jelly & ice cream, just like mama used to shake, and Buoy’s Kitchen – open for rain-free brunch from 10am to 6pm – unveiling their special Paddy’s Day cocktail, The Green Glory, whilst The Word Bird have their Manky Map of Ireland available for anyone needing a little Greystones love abroad.
And after all the brouhaha and battling the elements, you can take refuge in one of the town’s many drinking emporiums, with the Horse & Hound going mildly doolally with a trad session on both Sunday and Monday, 5pm to 7pm, and the bould Karl Ives serenading Pluck’sfrom 9.30pm, whilst the biggest and bouldest session will be at The Whale, where The Navvies will be belting out all the old songs we love. With a proper PA. And a stage. And a full bar. Boom!
As for the actual Greystones St Patrick’s Day Parade 2019, the participating groups will gather at the South Beach car park at 11.30am, for a 12 noon start.
The parade will head up Church Road, making its way through the adoring crowds to St Patrick’s Church – where each will pause to impress the parade judges – before finishing at the junction on Victoria Road.
The categories for this year’s parade comprise of… Most Original, Most Colourful, Best Uniformed, Best Traditional Irish, Most Topical, Most Entertaining, Best Social/Cultural, Best Sports, Best Commercial, Best Musical and Overall Parade Winner.
There will also be a prize for Best Window Display – which is free to enter. Just do up your window, ya lazy git.
The people you gotta impress include St David’s head boy Tom Cleary and head girl Rachel Purcell, that chancer Kathleen Kelleher, and local municipal district diamonds, Myra Porter and Kay Coughlan.
You can find out who actually won last year right abouthere, and the year before righthere.
And if you – and the kids – need to recover on the Monday, the Greystones Film Club are screening the 1994 animated classicThe Lion Kingat 3pm at that very groovy boutique cinema in the belly of The Whale. Your €10 admission gets you a free kids snackbox [drink, sweets & popcorn] or an adult popcorn. Nice.
So, brace yourselves, people. Take plenty of vitamins and minerals in the days ahead. Try and get as much sleep as you can. And, for Elvis’ sake, don’t forget to count how many children you have before you all head out for the day.
Oh, and if someone could fix it so we have a plane with fireworks and lasers flying overhead this year, that would super agus duper…
In the meantime, you can check out all of Greystones’ Paddy’s Day fun over the years right here.