Céad Mile Fáilte! A hundred thousand welcomes. St. Patrick's Day in Albuquerque promises more activities and celebrations than can be stuffed into one day, so take a look at a month’s worth of smatterings and choose several to celebrate a little bit o' Ireland.
The New Mexico Firefighters hold an annual St. Baldrick's fundraiser at the Santa Ana Star Center. For 2018, the event is on March 11 from noon to 4:00 p.m. The firefighters will shave their heads. There will be pipes and drums, live music, Irish dancers, an aerial ladder climb, silent auction, jumpers for the kids, a classic car display, food, and more. This is a free event, donations are welcome.
The ShamRock Fest at the Balloon Museum features arts and crafts, face-painting, bounce houses, circus performers, and more. The Fest is Saturday, March 17, 2018 from 11:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
O'Niell's typically serves Irish specialties such as corned beef and cabbage and lamb stew. Music, celebrations and dance will happen at both O'Niell's locations, beginning at 10:00 a.m. on Patrick's Day in 2018. In the past, celebrations have included the Tir Conaill Irish Step Dancers and the High Desert Pipe and Drums. Contact O'Niell's to find out more.
Every year on St. Patrick's Day weekend, hot air balloons rise over the skies of Belen. Get up close with Smokey the Bear, Shamrock Patty and the Flighthouse balloons. Get out early at 7:00 a.m. to Eagle Park, 1619 West Delgado Avenue, March 17 and 18, 2018. Free parking and admission.
The Shamrock Shuffle starts and finishes at the Rio Rancho Aquatic Center. Lace your shoes and go green in a 10 miler, 10K, 5K or Kids K. Don't forget to wear green! 2018's Shamrock Shuffle is on Saturday, March 17.
The 67th annual dinner features traditional Irish food. Proceeds benefit the Good Shepherd Center, which helps the area's homeless population. Tickets can be purchased at the door. There will be a full Irish feast, children's games and entertainment. Take out dinners available. The dinner takes place at the Albuquerque Convention Center. Tickets can be purchased at the door or at Barrett House, Good Shepherd Center or Holy Family West. The 2018 dinner is March 17 from 4:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
Annual St. Patrick's Day Party
The Irish American Society holds the party at the German American Club, located at 4821 Menaul NE. 2018's event features Celtic Eclectic Band Saoirse, Celtic Steps Irish Stepdancers, NM Fire & Police Pipes and Drums, Irish Music Duo Jim Brauer and Derek Swinson, and an optional corned beef and cabbage dinner. The event runs from 6:00 p.m. to 10 p.m. on March 17, 2018. Tickets can be purchased until March 7.
Year-round Irish Organizations and Events
- Irish American Society of New Mexico: The society is dedicated to Irish culture in New Mexico and meets the second Friday of the month at 4821 Menaul NE.
- Rio Grande Celtic Festival and Highland Games: The annual Celtic Festival features Scottish traditions, from bagpipe music to games such as the sheaf toss. You'll also find vendors and entertainment all weekend long. Don't miss out on the Highland Dance. The games take place in 2018 on May 19 and 20 at Balloon Fiesta Park.
- Southwest Genealogical Society: The Irish Research Group meets at the Main Library. It features workshops and classes.
Year-round Irish Music
- O’Niell’s Pub: The music is Irish and the fun is authentic. Listen to live music and enjoy the craic on most Sundays. Check the schedule on the website for performances.
- Two Fools Tavern: Enjoy Celtic music in this family friendly event every Sunday from 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Find Two Fools Tavern at 3211 Central NE.
For folk music instruments and instruction, Apple Mountain Music offers everything you need. Find hammered dulcimers, bodhrans, harps, Irish whistle and more. Classes are offered at the Apple Mountain store, or other locations. They also offer an ongoing slate of folk music concerts.