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The St. Patrick's Day survival guide

Get ready. One of the biggest party days of the year is just around the corner. But not everyone is looking forward to it.

Hordes of people, many of them drunk, roaming the city streets may be fun for some, but many New Yorkers would rather a normal workday.

So here are our tips on how to avoid St. Patrick's Day in NYC, and how to celebrate without the craziness the day often brings.

Avoid midtown (as well as Murray Hill and the East Village)

If you want to avoid the thousands lined
Photo Credit: EMMANUEL DUNAND/AFP/Getty Images

If you want to avoid the thousands lined up to watch the parade, stay out of midtown on Tuesday, March 17. The parade marches up Fifth Ave. from 44th Street to 79th Street and begins at 11 a.m. Many revelers will spill into nearby bars and even further flung neighborhoods like Murray Hill and the East Village to continue the fun. If you live in those areas, stay inside. If you don't, stay away.

Where to drink and not be bombarded by green-clad partiers

Just because it's St. Patrick's Day doesn't mean
Photo Credit: FLICKR/ Jan Mark Holzer

Just because it's St. Patrick's Day doesn't mean you have to stay cooped up in your apartment. Here are our suggested bars for enjoying a serious cocktail, without fear of your fellow bargoers requesting green shots.

PDT: This bar is hidden and is known as a hang out for illustrious chefs and cocktail drinkers of a certain stripe. 113 St. Marks Pl.,

Employees Only: Lots of drunken debauchery, not drunken idiots. 510 Hudson St.,

Porchlight Bar: Danny Meyer's new cocktail bar is known for its blue - not green - retro beverages. 271 Eleventh Ave.,

Or, celebrate St. Patrick's Day without the booze

The creator of Sober St. Patrick’s Day came
Photo Credit: James Higgins

The creator of Sober St. Patrick’s Day came up with the idea after meeting a drunk person wearing a shirt that said “St. Patrick’s Day Today, Hungover Tomorrow.” The annual event attempts to “reclaim the true spirit of the day” by ditching the bars and alcohol in favor of music, dance and soft drinks. Cathedral High School, 250 E. 56th St., March 17 from 4 - 8 p.m.

More St. Patrick's Day cultural events

Saint Patrick’s Weekend Irish New York Walking Tour

The Irish are one of New York City’s largest ethnic groups, with an estimated population of over 2.5 million individuals. Large groups fled Ireland in the mid-1800s during the Irish Potato Famine and settled in the city. Get a glimpse into their world and explore the former “Little Ireland” located in the Lower East Side and learn a little bit about why St. Patrick’s Day is more popular here than back in Ireland. Saturday, March 14 at 1 p.m. and Sunday, March 15 at 12 p.m. Groups meet in front of St. Paul’s Chapel at 601 W. 153rd St. on Broadway between Fulton St. and Vesey St. Adults: $20. Students/Seniors/Members: $15. Info: 888-606-9255,

Around the World from Home: Sweet & Savory Ireland

Learn to make classic Irish dishes including meat pie, cheese tarts and soda bread. Saturday, March 14 at 2 p.m. Whole Foods Bowery Culinary Center, 2nd floor. $40. Register at

St. Patrick’s Day Celebration: A Tribute to the Tredwells’ Irish Servants

Explore the home of Seabury Tredwell, a prosperous New York City hardware merchant, and his family along with four Irish servants. The four story building was built in 1832 and is still furnished with the original furniture dating from 1835-1865. Climb the narrow staircase into the servants quarters. Sunday, March 15, walking tour at 12:30, house tour at 2 p.m. at the Merchant’s House Museum, 29 E. 4th St. General Admission: $10. Students and Seniors (over 65): $5. Members and children under 12: Free. Info: 212-777-1089,


But you should still eat all the Irish foods

A great way to mark the holiday is
Photo Credit: Anthony Lanzilote

A great way to mark the holiday is by eating. Corned beef and cabbage is associated with St. Patrick’s Day feasts and consists of salt-cured corned beef that’s cooked in the same pot as the milder-tasting cabbage, simmering to a cohesive, flavorful dish. You can have it traditional, or inventive, like these tacos at Swift's.

Check out our lists of where to get the classic St. Patrick's Day dishes and where to get the creative ones.


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