Thursday, March 17, 2011

St. Patrick's Day

St. Patrick's Day is celebrated in many countries on March 17th, except the Czech Republic.  I guess I can understand why....there don't seem to be many Irish people living in the Czech Republic.  Starting on Wednesday, I started teaching my Czech students about this holiday.  Doing so, I even learned a few things myself.  I know that America has a habit of celebrating just about anything without knowing exactly why they are celebrating.  During early immigration, many Irish people came to American.  In fact many Americans have an Irish background.
   In my small town in Lake Stevens, WA most people go to the one Irish bar and drink green beer and get probably a little more intoxicated than they had planned when arriving.  I am pretty sure than maybe 10 percent (and that is being generous) are actually Irish.  American, Irish, non Irish celebrate this day and it has become an important holiday celebrated in America as well as in Ireland.
    Did you know that Seattle has the largest St. Patrick's Day Parade in the Northwestern Region???  Did you know that Chicago colors it river green for the day?  Along with Chicago, many other cities also color their rivers or fountains green for the day.  New York has the biggest St. Patrick's Day Parade in the WORLD.  They are even bigger than Ireland.
     As I was doing my research to educate my students, I learned many things.  I didn't think St. Patrick's Day was as big in America as I found out.  Traditionally the holiday is based off of St. Patrick, a Catholic Saint who was sent to Ireland.  He eventually became the Saint Patron of Ireland and the holiday bares his name.  The shamrock is the symbol of the day because St. Patrick used the flower to explain the Holy Trinity (Father, Son, and Holy Ghost) and so the color green became associated with the day.  Now St. Patrick's Day is a day where the Irish can show off their culture and believe me, American's are very happy to help celebrate.
     This day is the number one drinking day in America.  Many Americans cram into Irish bars and partake in drinking green beer and enormous amounts of Guinness.  Along with drinking, parades, parties, Irish food, Irish music, and dancing help make the day what it is famous for...having fun.
     Sooooo....I figured since the Czech's LOVE to drink, they would love to celebrate this day as well.  On Thursday, I brought in green sugar cookies that I had made as well as green Czech Potato Pancakes.  I was able to tie my task of cooking something new each week into the St. Patrick's Day celebration.  On a side note, I wanted to make my sugar cookies green as well as the Potato Pancakes but for some reason the green coloring substance did something to the ingredients of the items and they didn't turn out like I had expected.  They taste much better than they look. :)  Also the Potato pancakes did not turn out to be as round as they showed in the cook book, so I put my brilliant mind to work and I came up with the perfect solution.  MINI ME Potato Pancakes.  I used a shot glass to get the round shape and no one is the wiser of the way they actually turned out (well...except all those reading this blog)
    I asked my students to wear green on Thursday and I just love sharing part of my culture with my students.  Even though I am not Irish, like every good American, I love a fun tradition and wearing green so  you don't get pinched seems as fun as any.

1 comment:

  1. i am not irish, but i make corned beef every year, partake in an irish car bomb or two, have a four leaf clover hunt (wiht paper clovers) for my kids, and wear greeen. i am sucker for a fun holiday. :)