21 Jan 2022
No place this side of the Atlantic Ocean celebrates St. Patrick’s Day like Savannah. The traditional Irish holiday on March 17 marks one of the biggest parties in the city. After all, this coastal Southern city has thrown a massive celebration since 1824 and nearly half a million people come out each year for this party. Some of the first Savannah settlers arrived as early as 1734 from Ireland. One Irishman, Henry Ellis, served as second royal governor of the Georgia colony. By the early 1800s, a large population of working-class Irish people was living in Savannah, and by the mid-1800s, shipping routes carried immigrants from southeastern Ireland to Savannah regularly.
So, it’s no surprise that Georgia’s first city also holds its largest celebration of the green!
Kick-off all the festivities on March 4 when the 27th March of Dimes Shamrock 5K Run takes place in Ellis Square are Barnard and West Congress streets. The event is fun for all ages, and kids 10 and under are free! Even four-legged participants are welcome. Enjoy music, food, entertainment, and a costume contest.
The St. Patrick’s Day Rugby Tournament takes place in Daffin Park on March 12-13 with teams from across the U.S. and Europe competing.
The Greening of the Fountain in Forsyth Park takes place about a week before St. Patrick’s Day. Watch for updates on the event.
On March 13-14, the St. Patrick’s Day Festival takes place from 10 a.m. to midnight on River Street and in City Market. It’s one of the largest festivals and events of the year in Savannah with vendors lining the streets, bands playing on multiple stages throughout downtown, and plenty of restaurants and pubs for downing a Guinness or Irish whiskey.
Then the main event, the St. Patrick’s Day Parade, rolls on March 17. It started in 1824 when the Hibernian Society president invited the public to walk with him through Savannah’s streets to hear a speech from Bishop John England. The event grew from there. In 1870, the festivities added a grand marshal. Now half a million people visit the city for the parade, which rolls at 10:15 a.m. from Gwinnett and Abercorn streets, just east of Forsyth Park. With pipe bands, Irish dancers, and a total of 350 marching units, Savannah’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade is the second-largest in the U.S., right behind New York.
Savannah’s 2nd Shamrock Ships St. Paddy’s Flotilla takes place from 2-5 p.m. on Saturday, March 19 along the Savannah River.
Get on the green and get set for the biggest party of the year! Book a vacation rental early right in the heart of the Historic District to get in on all the fun.