Break out your best green attire and start feeling lucky, because whether you’re Irish or just Irish at heart, St. Patrick’s Day is always a fun holiday to celebrate in Annapolis. There’s the Annapolis St. Patrick’s Day Parade, which is a tradition that’s been running for a decade now, as well as fun observances at restaurants and bars throughout the city and surrounding area.
Here’s what you need to know about St. Patrick’s Day in Annapolis…
St. Patrick’s Day Parade
Mark your calendars early, because the annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade always happens a weekend or two before the holiday itself. (If you ask organizers why they hold it as early as the first weekend in March, they’ll tell you it’s because that gives you plenty of time to recover from all the celebrating and be ready to celebrate again on March 17.)
In 2023, when the tradition is celebrating its 10th year, the parade is happening on Sunday, March 5. But the St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Annapolis is always much more than just a one-day occasion—there are festivities all weekend long.
The weekend starts with what’s known as the Irish Hooley, a celebration of all things Irish, on Friday night at Susan Campbell Park at the Annapolis city dock. This is a chance for the event organizers to formally recognize the grand marshals of not only the current year’s parade but also previous years. There’s always plenty of Irish food, specialty cocktails, and Irish music.
The festivities continue with Shamrock The Dock on Saturday when there are live performances of Irish-inspired bands, Irish dancing, pipe bands, and other exciting acts. Shamrock The Dock also showcases artisan vendors who will have their merchandise for sale, plus there’s plenty of food and drink.
All of it culminates with the main event, the St. Patrick’s Day Parade, on Sunday afternoon starting at 1:00 PM. The parade begins on West Street, then goes around Church Circle onto Main Street before going around Randall/Compromise Circle and concluding on Randall Street. The parade features a variety of participants, including marching bands, Irish dancers, bagpipers, floats, and local community groups. Many of the participants wear green and other Irish-themed attire, and some even dress up as leprechauns or other Irish characters. Spectators can find a spot along the route to watch the parade and enjoy the festivities.
Irish Restaurants and Pubs
If you’re looking for a unique and fun way to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day this year, why not venture out to an authentic Irish restaurant? Fill up on traditional dishes and raise a glass to the luck of the Irish! And Annapolis has no shortage of authentic Irish restaurants.
Galway Bay Irish Pub
Galway Bay is a popular Irish pub located in downtown Annapolis. They offer traditional Irish dishes like shepherd’s pie, bangers and mash, and corned beef and cabbage, as well as a variety of Irish beers and whiskies.
Killarney House Irish Restaurant
Killarney House is a family-owned Irish restaurant located in Davidsonville, just outside of Annapolis. They serve a variety of traditional Irish dishes, as well as American favorites, and have a cozy pub atmosphere.
McGarvey’s Saloon and Oyster Bar
While not exclusively an Irish restaurant, McGarvey’s has an Irish pub vibe and serves a variety of Irish dishes like corned beef and cabbage, Irish stew, and fish and chips. They also have an extensive selection of craft beers and spirits.
Fadó Irish Pub
Fadó is a national chain of Irish pubs with a location in Annapolis. They offer a variety of Irish dishes and drinks, as well as live music and other events throughout the year.
O’Brien’s Oyster Bar and Restaurant
O’Brien’s is a seafood restaurant with an Irish twist. They offer a variety of Irish dishes, including shepherd’s pie and corned beef and cabbage, as well as seafood specialties like oysters and crab cakes.
Looking for something for the kids? Anne Arundel County Public Library holds extraordinary events for all occasions, and St. Patrick’s Day is no different—it’s an occasion when library branches make it easy for all members of the family to learn about Irish culture and pride. For example, in 2023, the Eastport-Annapolis Neck Community Library Branch will hold a St. Patrick’s Day Party geared toward preschoolers and children ages 6-10 in the branch’s community meeting room from 2:00 PM-3:00 PM. There will be plenty of games, crafts, and fun activities.
Also on March 11, a little bit farther south in the county, the Deale Library Branch will welcome the O’Grady Quinlan Irish Dance Academy for an all-ages performance on Saturday, March 11, at 11:00 AM.