Large-scale St. Patrick’s day celebrations have become a tradition in many cities around the world, but have only gained popularity in the Czech Republic in recent years.
This year, the festivities will last across an entire weekend.
On March 16 and 17, in addition to traditional Irish music, cultural performances, and workshops, this year’s St. Patrick’s Tour promises Irish cuisine, stand-up comedy, and a parade through the streets of Prague.
And not only in the capital city – celebrations are planned in more than 600 locations throughout the country.
Last year saw the debut of a St. Patrick’s Day parade in Prague; this year the new addition is a focus on Irish cuisine. Oysters, a typical Irish dish, will be paired with Jameson and specialty beers at the Náplavka Street Food Festival (March 16) at the Smíchov waterfront from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
The main space for this year’s St. Patrick’s tour is Holešovice Market Hala 17. The main program, from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m., will be the Velvet Comedy Show, featuring stand-up performances by professional comedians, the first two of which are Dublin natives – Richie Bree and John Colleary.
In Hala 7 visitors can also see an exhibition of photographs by Jan Řeháček aka Kopernikka or take advantage of tattoo and barber services. Even here, Irish gastronomic specialties won’t be relegated to the back burner.
Visitors can try pairings of Jameson whiskey and Košíře beers, which mature in old Jameson whiskey casks, as well as Irish coffee and other Irish favorites. From 6 p.m., the music program will feature an old St. Patrick Tour favorite, Irish bard Travis O’Neill, and his guests.
Other locations on the Tour include the Rock Café on Národní Street, where the evening will kick off with Underground Comedy and their stand-up program, while The Wild Roots and Cheers will handle the music side of the event (entrance fee CZK 150).
Electronic dance music will be the focus in the second Holešovice space, 36 Underground. Headlining the show will be Irish DJ Marcus O’Laiore, joined by Czech DJs Melvin Coxx, SNBM, Michael C, Enrico, and others (entrance fee CZK 100).
The Czech St. Patrick’s celebrations will culminate in a Sunday March 17 parade through the streets of Prague. The starting point will be Kampus Hybernská – at around 3 p.m., the green parade of Irish living in the Czech Republic will set off with their friends and other supporters out into the streets of Prague.
Kampus Hybernská will host other events on Sunday, including a crash course in the Irish language, Irish literature readings, and a concert by Conamara Chaos. You’ll also find Irish drinks and specialty foods.
And, of course, look for the Dancing House to light up a lovely shade of shamrock green once this year on Saturday night.
For festival details see here.