St Patrick’s Day is a holiday just meant for Seattle. The Northwest is an ideal climate for cozy Irish pubs and there are many located in Seattle, Tacoma and cities in between. There’s nothing like warming up with a Guinness. If you want to get out and do something more active than tip back a beer, don't miss Seattle's St. Patrick's Day Parade, and there's also an Irish festival and often a run or two in the lineup too.
While there are Irish celebrations throughout March, the bulk of Seattle’s Irish cultural celebrations take place between March 13 and 21, 2020, for what the city dubs Irish Week. The week includes some events that get plenty of fanfare on their own like the Irish Festival and St. Patrick’s Day Dash, but also some smaller events worth checking out. Start the festivities off by attending the Mayor’s Irish Week Proclamation Luncheon at 408 Occidental Avenue S. on March 13 at noon. Tickets are required.
Watch the Seafair Pirates Land and Lay the Green Stripe
The Seafair Pirates are generally better know for…well…Seafair. But they also traditionally land on the shores of South Lake Union (this year on March 13 at 5:30 p.m.) for St. Patrick’s Day. The fanfare doesn’t end with the landing, though. If you’re there at 5:30 p.m., you can follow along with the pirates to Pioneer Square where there’s a mini parade of sorts to mark the route for the following day’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade. A green stripe is laid down on the road to mark the path of the parade, and a crowd follows the green stripe layers on a flat-bed truck. Kids are welcome and the event is free. Board the truck in Pioneer Square on Occidental Street across from CenturyLink’s north parking lot at 6:30 p.m.
Watch Seattle's St. Patrick’s Day Parade
Each St. Patrick's Day (or sometimes on the nearest weekend), Seattle puts on one of its best parades. Bagpipers, pirates, drill teams, Irish dancers, bands, and more all march past onlookers. The parade route follows along 4th Avenue at James Street and ends at Westlake Park (on 4th Avenue at Pine), and usually starts around 12:30 p.m. Get there early to get a good spot.
For 2020, this event is March 14.
Seattle Center hosts Festal festivals throughout the year. Each festival highlights a culture by inviting in crafters and vendors related to the chosen culture, dance and performances, and food. The Irish Festival is a fun and family-friendly way to enjoy St. Patrick's Day and add a bit of cultural learning into the mix. Expect visual arts, performances, a marketplace, genealogy workshops and more. Best of all, it's a free festival!
For 2020, this event is March 14 and 15.
This run covers about four miles of ground and encourages everyone young and old to participate, whether you want to walk or run. The mood is light with racers often dressing in costumes, so you’ll be running (or watching) leprechauns and Guinness cans jog by. Most runners at the very least wear green to get into the spirit. The run begins and ends at Seattle Center.
For 2020, this event is March 15.
While Tacoma doesn't have a parade or a large Irish festival, it does have a run open to varying fitness levels. There's a kids' run, 5K, 10K and half marathon, which is part of the Crown of the Sound series. The course starts and ends in downtown Tacoma, and then follows along Schuster Parkway and Ruston Way by the water for a nice, scenic run. Put on your finest greenery and join the fun.
For 2020, the event is March 14.
The third annual St. Patrick’s Day Pub Crawl will make its way through downtown Seattle. Dress in green and costumes and be prepared to make a lot of new friends. Previous years have brought in more than 1,000 revelers! You do need to register or RSVP via the event’s Facebook page simply by choosing that you’re “Going.”
For 2020, this event takes place on March 14.
Sometimes the best way to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day (or anything really) is with food. Bacon Eggs & Kegs is a giant brunch extravaganza at CenturyLink Field that benefits Northwest Harvest. There will be food vendors galore and each will have at least one $5 dish on the menu so you can sample rather than choose just one place to eat, if you like. Sustenance will include such delights as bacon nachos, fried avocado bacon benedicts, vanilla bacon waffles, as well as bloody mary bars with dozens of toppings. If you don’t want brunch food, there will also be 40 breweries and cideries on tap, gigantic games like giant Jenga and giant inflatable Hungry Hungry Hippos, and live music.
On 2020, this event is on March 14.
Put on your green running gear, bring the kids if you have them, and get ready for a fun road race. The Kirkland Shamrock Run includes both a 5K and kids’ race and benefits local nonprofits. The course starts at Marina Park at 25 Lakeshore Plaza Drive in Kirkland. After the race, there’s a post-race party at Wilde Rover.
On 2020, this event is on March 14.
Bust out a Beer at Seattle's Irish Pubs
There are many Irish pubs throughout the Seattle-Tacoma area. Most have something special on for St. Patrick’s Day, but at the very least, these are great places to get Irish beer and food.
- Conor Byrne Pub: 5140 Ballard Ave. N.W., Seattle
- Fado Irish Pub: 801 1st Avenue, Seattle
- Kells Irish Restaurant & Pub: 1916 Post Alley, Seattle
- Owl 'n Thistle Irish Pub & Restaurant: 808 Post Alley, Seattle
- T.S. McHugh’s: 21 Mercer Street, Seattle
- Paddy Coyne’s: 2801 Alaskan Way #103, Seattle and 700 Bellevue Way NE Suite 100, Bellevue
- Doyle's Public House: 208 St. Helens Avenue, Tacoma
- O'Malley's Irish Pub: 2403 6th Avenue, Tacoma
- Wilde Rover: 111 Central Way, Kirkland