St Patrick’s Parade and Festival, Birmingham 2019!

What’s the craic? Any plans for Sunday the 17th of March?

It’s St Patrick’s Day folks!! You know what this means…We paint the town green!! Make sure you clear your schedules and join the largest celebration of St Patrick’s in Britain, in Birmingham’s heart of Irish culture, Digbeth.

Birmingham’s St Patrick’s Parade has been one of the most successful events in the city since 1996, and the third biggest in the world, welcoming thousands of people every year.

Not only does it celebrate the Irish heritage but also the diversity of Birmingham’s multicultural nature. It also guarantees to entertain and amuse every individual through its eye-pleasing acts, music and dance.

You can draw a shamrock on your cheek, bring an Irish flag or even come dressed as a leprechaun, the choice is absolutely yours!!

The parade starts at 12:00pm in Camp Hill and ends at 2:00pm in Digbeth High Street.

The after-parade party will continue at St Pat Rocks Stage on Zellig car park, opposite the Irish Centre, where there will be live music performances from 2:00pm until 11:00pm!!

This year, the festival’s headliner would be the Irish sensation known by the name Finbar Furey, who will be accompanied by a number of performers and bands of Irish folk music, including: Lampa, The Deluge, O’ Fibbs, Salt Creek, The Hurling Boys, Cairde, James Reidy and Trad Lash.

After a couple of drinks, I assure you that these musicians will let that Irish jig inside you come alive! Believe it or not, it’s going to happen!!

For food/drinks, kids’ activities and shopping, you can visit The Emerald Village on Bradford Street car park, behind the Irish Centre.

Various food traders will be joining the festival, with stalls of street food including Jamaican BBQ, Sandwiches and Toasties, Hot Dogs and Corn Dogs, Pizza, Waffles, Mini Pancakes and many more!!

On St Patrick’s Day, we drink the Irish way so make sure you hit the Double Decker Bus Bar to enjoy some of the most popular Irish drinks like a glass of Jameson Whiskey or a Baileys Irish Cream and have your beer breaks in one of the many Guinness bars around.

As the Irish say, ‘When we drink, we get drunk. When we get drunk, we fall asleep. When we fall asleep, we commit no sin. When we commit no sin, we go to heaven’.

So, let’s drink like the Irish do and hopefully when we die, we go to heaven!! Sláinte!!

Kids can do face-painting, join free dance & music workshops and do several arts & crafts activities. There will also be a magic show, balloon modeling, a petting zoo, ponies and a funfair.

If you also fancy some shopping, there is going to be a market area with local crafters, vintage clothing, baked goods, homemade preserves & chutneys and a variation of delicious treats.

Celebrations will take place in other venues as well, with special events planned for a St’ Patrick’s Day to remember.

For a more casual time and a family friendly environment, you can join The Old Crown, The Night Owl and Digbeth Dining Club.

The Old Crown starts celebrations from 11pm until late at night with lots of food, drinks and music, bringing back the Guinness Village and a Jameson’s beer garden. The all-day party will be featured by DJs and live performers including: The Grandmaster, Ire-Ish, James Reidy, Lee Mac t. Paddy Daddy, Cassie-Philomena Smyth and Douglas Castle (Peace).

The Night Owl is hosting ‘The Mighty Craic!’ from 1pm with music and BBQ. It promises to entertain all ages, with live performances by Ash Sheehan playing Irish favorites, The Curv3 with some mod and indie classics, and a DJ set by Dom Cross & friends.

Digbeth’s Dining Club will also be celebrating the day from 12pm to 10pm, with award winning street food, full retro gaming experience from Dead Pixels, a pop-up barber shop and loud music by DJs and other artists.

If you are in a clubbing-party mood, you can always visit Digbeth’s The Mill or Moseley’s Castle & Falcon!!

The Mill has prepared a ‘This Aint Berlin’ event, starting at 3pm until 12pm. It’s a St’ Patrick’s All Dayer, with a guest appearance by DJ Mike Book for a 3-hour set and a number of the city’s DJs including: Tommy Vercetti, Marc Spence, Tyrone Amory, 2Minds and Fowler.

The Castle & Falcon event, will start celebrating at 8pm until 4am, so even if you are somewhere else and it’s still not 4pm, why not stop by for a quick spin and a cold drink? It could be the perfect place to end this special day. James Reidy will be performing live and DJ Chris Lane will keep us company all night long, playing Irish and Party Classics, Old School 90s, Indies, Hip Hop and Charts.

And if you can get through the door, don’t forget the Spotted Dog, Fountain and Lamp Tavern.. or escape it all in the Ruin!

By Emilia Antoniadou