St. Patrick's Day fun at the Irish pubs in the Seattle area.

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Did you hear that click?

Might have been the sound of an Irish beer being opened.

Or, perhaps, the sound of an Irish pub being opened — they’re sprouting like urban weeds around the Seattle area.

“Do you remember when there was just Jake O’Shaughnessey’s, Kells and McRory’s?” e-mails a pondering Mick McHugh, of F.X. McRory’s. “I think the latest count is now close to 30 Irish pubs, so that means a lot of Guinness will be flowing. Thanks be to God!”

Yes, the sacred Guinness and other Irish drinks (Harp, Bushmill’s Irish coffee, etc.) will be pouring forth Monday on St. Patrick’s Day, that most inimitable of holidays. How would you describe it to someone from a non-European country? (“Well, see, we celebrate the guy who chased the spiders from Ireland — or was it snakes? Anyway, doesn’t matter, it’s just about Irish music and green beer … “)

As the blessed day occurs on Monday, many Irish bars — logically enough — stretching the St. Patrick’s Day festivities over the entire weekend, starting Friday.

But that’s all just the appetizer for Monday’s main entree of merriment.

Some highlights for St. Patrick’s Day 2008, at new and old pubs around these parts:

Wilde Rover Irish Pub & Restaurant

111 Central Way, Kirkland

425-822-8940

www.wilderover.com Live Irish music at the Kirkland pub begins at 3 p.m., with the likes of the Kennedy Brothers, the Ian McFeron Band and Big Luv; $10 cover (a portion of the day’s proceeds will benefit Hopelink).

Murphy’s Pub

1928 N. 45th St., Seattle

206-634-2110

www.murphyseattle.com At the Wallingford pub, the Carrigaline Irish Band starts playing at noon, followed by Dan Maher from 3 p.m. to 9 p.m., then the Elliott Bay Pipe band 10-11 p.m.; $10 cover.

Fado Irish Pub

801 First Ave., Seattle

206-264-2700

www.fadoirishpub.com/seattle Music begins at the downtown Fado at 10 a.m. with Justin & Ronana, followed by the Boys of Greenwood Glen in the afternoon, Handful of Lovin’ in the early evening and the Erin McNamee Band from 10 p.m. until closing time. The Seattle Firefighters Pipe and Drum Band will be popping in throughout the day; $15 cover (includes $10 gift card).

Conor Byrne’s Pub

5140 Ballard Ave. N.W., Seattle

206-784-3640

The Ballard pub gets traditional music started at 3 p.m. with Crumac, and boasts “DJ Mapes spinning all the greatest Irish rock you can think of” starting at 8.

Celtic Bayou

7281 W. Lake Sammamish Parkway N.E., Redmond

425-869-5933

www.celticbayou.com This pub in Redmond promises three bands in the afternoon and night, no cover.

Kells Irish Restaurant & Pub

1916 Post Alley

206-728-1916

www.kellsirish.com/seattle

Kells, in Pike Place Market, has music going from noon onward, featuring the likes of Belfast’s the Whole Hog and locals like Corner Bhoys and Ockham’s Razor; $20 cover (includes T-shirt).

T.S. McHugh’s Irish Pub & Restaurant

21 Mercer St., Seattle

206-282-1910

www.tsmchughs.com T.S. McHugh’s, just outside Seattle Center, has live music day and night, with the bands Claypipe and Creeping Time — plus bagpipers and step dancers. $10 cover starting at 5 p.m.

F.X. McRory’s

419 Occidental Ave S., Seattle

206-623-4800

www.fxmcrorys.com The Pioneer Square pub begins the music with Rapparree and Bert’s Blarney Boys at 11 a.m., with the Keith Highlanders Pipe Bank also playing throughout the day and night; no cover.

Mulleady’s Pub

3055 21st Ave. W., Seattle

206-283-8843

www.mulleadyspub.com

Mulleady’s, in Interbay, begins music on the grand day with Erin McNamee at 4 p.m., followed by the Washington Scottish Pipe Band at 8 and Whiskey Galore at 9; no cover (praise the saints!).

Tom Scanlon: tscanlon@seattletimes.com