St. Patrick’s Day Parade, March 14; Irish Festival, March 14-15, Seattle.

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Seattle, the Emerald City, is even more green than usual at this weekend’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade and Irish Festival.

St. Patrick was brought to Ireland from Britain by Irish pirates 1,600 years ago and he’s arriving in Seattle in similar fashion, escorted by Seattle’s Pirates of the Emerald Isle, who will drop him off at South Lake Union near MOHAI at about 6 p.m. Friday. Everyone is invited to board the Ride the Ducks boat at 5 p.m. at F.X. McRory’s, returning there in time to join in Friday evening’s Green Stripe Laying mini-parade.

Saturday’s St. Patrick’s Day parade starts with the raising of the Irish flag at the King County Administration Building with parade Grand Marshal (and Seattle mayor) Ed Murray, of Irish heritage and connections, including a recent Seattle Sister City visit to Galway. Galway Mayor Donal Lyons is a guest at the parade, along with Irish dancers, Seattle Police and Seattle Fire Department bagpipe bands, Irish community groups, marching bands, drill teams, Seafair Clowns, and Irish wolfhound and Irish water- spaniel dog clubs.

St. Patrick’s Day Parade

Time: 12:30 p.m. Saturday, March 14; Green Stripe Laying mini-parade, 7 p.m. Friday, March 13, from Fourth Avenue and Jefferson Street, flat-bed-truck ride along the route boards 6:30 p.m. Friday, F.X. McRory’s, 419 Occidental Ave. S., Seattle

Location: Fourth Avenue from Jefferson Street to Westlake Center

More info:

Irish Festival

Time: Noon to 6 p.m. Saturday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday, March 14-15

Location: Seattle Center Armory, Seattle

More info: 206-684-7200 or

Anyone with an Irish connection is invited to walk in the parade or ride the Seniors Shamrock Shuttle, boarding at Fourth Avenue and James Street starting at noon. Parade closing ceremonies are at Seattle Center Armory at 2:30 p.m., with free Seattle Monorail rides for all from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m.; expect a long line of festive paradegoers and participants for the ride.

Irish Festival events Saturday and Sunday feature Irish dancing and music, art displays, exhibits, kids activities, Irish Reels film festival and workshops on Irish culture, genealogy and language. Kids can join in “Most Irish-looking Face” (Saturday) and “Smilingest Irish Eyes” (Sunday) contests, based on “eyes twinkle bright as can be” and a smile that would “steal your heart away,” per the song “When Irish Eyes Are Smiling.”

DeLorean sports cars manufactured in Belfast in 1981 will be in Saturday’s parade and on display from 1 to 4 p.m. both days outside the Armory. Irish Week events this year celebrate the 150th anniversary of the birth of William Butler Yeats, who popularized Irish culture in his poems and plays. Saturday’s festival includes an overview of his life and a reading from his poems, with all welcome to join in with their Yeats favorite.

Beannachtai na Féila Pádraig (happy St. Patrick’s Day)!