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Saint Patrick's Day History and Legend

Saint Patrick's Day History and Legend

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St. Patrick's Day Facts: Green Rivers to Corned Beef

St. Patrick's Day history notes that the first time the Chicago River was transformed green was on St. Patrick's Day, 1962. The facts about St. Patrick's Day point to a Chicago plumber who was struck with the idea when he saw a co-worker's overalls stained bright green. So just like green candy, like jelly beans, green clothes and green decorations, the river was transformed into a green tribute to St. Patrick's Day for a few hours. On St. Patty Day in Chicago, only about 40 pounds of dye are used to minimize the impact on the river and to be environmentally "green."

According to St. Patrick's Day history, dyeing beer green is an Irish-American tradition, probably started in Boston or New York City. Fun facts about St. Patrick Day do trace the beginnings of this green beverage to the Irish custom of "drowning the shamrock," when men would drop a shamrock into their drinks at the local pub after a festival. Now, dyeing St. Patrick's Day candy, beer, and food is as traditional as pinching someone who's not wearing a stitch of green. St. Patty Day jelly beans from Jelly Belly to keep in mind for the holiday include our green apple, watermelon, and mojito jelly beans.

Keep St. Patrick's Day history in mind as you enjoy the traditional St. Patrick's Day dinner of corned beef and cabbage. Facts about St. Patrick's Day actually show that corned beef is an Americanized version of an Irish staple: boiled pork and cabbage. Beef was an expensive Irish food enjoyed primarily by the wealthy in the 18th and 19th centuries, but when Irish families immigrated to the United States after the Great Potato Famine of the 1880s, they found beef affordable and it became a part of St. Paddy Day. Thus, the revised Patty Day recipe of corned beef and cabbage, and don't forget sweet, shamrock-hued jelly beans for a fun way to end the meal.
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