For those of you who don’t know, Boston boasts an incredibly passionate Irish-American population. Our city’s strong Irish roots are deeply embedded into the history of our city, with individual neighborhoods, bars and restaurants fueling Beantown’s Irish-American identity. For this reason, Boston is one of the best places in the world — outside of Ireland, of course — in which to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day. At the center of Boston’s widespread St. Patty’s Day celebration is the city’s beloved St. Patrick’s Day Parade.
Located in the historically Irish-American neighborhood of Southie, the St. Patrick’s Day Parade brings family and friends together in the streets to commemorate the city’s most joyous annual holiday. The origins of the parade date back to the Revolutionary War when General John Henry Knox lined up more than 50 cannons along Dorchester Heights to deter British soldiers from entering. Apparently, the password for friendlies to cross the line was “St. Patrick.”
Today’s route involves zero live cannons, only a nice loop through South Boston, heading down Broadway and through Dorchester Heights. The parade itself consists of a series of floats and different performers. The marching bagpipe players are always a crowd favorite alongside the various military bands who also march the route. Another popular group along the parade route is the gang of gentlemen who dress up as Revolutionary War soldiers, which all of the kids always love.
In addition to all of the classic details, it’s important to make clear that the Boston St. Patrick’s Day Parade is an incomparably location-specific experience. Whether it’s the best celebration in the world is up for debate, but we say with confidence and pride that there is no St. Patrick’s Day celebration quite like Boston’s. The parade is a great place to experience the fun with friends and family. For those looking to partake in the holiday’s less-tame celebrations, there are countless Irish pubs throughout town that are sure to be in their highest spirits from early morning through the night.
Boston St. Patrick’s Day Parade
Sunday, March 15th, 2015
South Boston, MA