Why Doesn’t Kalamazoo Have A St. Patrick’s Day Tradition?
St. Patrick's Day is a day to celebrate the Irish culture that exists in America today and give those with Irish ancestors to feel honored and respected within the country. Obviously, as we all know, this day has turned into a holiday for most adult Americans to have a number of adult beverages and pinch people who aren't wearing green.
As far as traditions go for a holiday such as St. Patrick's Day, it quite literally varies by not only region, but by city as well. What one city will do every year to celebrate may be completely different than what the very next town over does yearly to show love to the Irish. Either way, Americans like to acknowledge the drinking side of the Irish culture, except not so much here in Kalamazoo.
This doesn't mean that we don't do anything as a city for the holiday because we do still have a St. Patrick's Day parade every year and this year marks the 21st year. Other than the parade though, there are no official traditions that our city holds for the day.
Many college students and other college-aged adults have made it their business to round up a group of friends and cruise around town bar hopping. Of course, this seems like a tradition in itself but with the lack of Irish Pubs within Kalamazoo, there isn't enough there to turn it into anything. We have McGonigle's and O'Duffy's as the only two Pubs of the Irish Culture.
Also, not to be that guy but with the emphasis that we place on the DooDah Parade and that time of year, can we as a city afford to have a huge tradition for St. Patrick's Day? Due to the current water state, dying one of the lakes or rivers green like Chicago is out of the picture, but there has to be something we could do, right?
The only other reason I can think of why Kalamazoo wouldn't have any St. Patrick's Day traditions is a lack of Irish descendants within the community and the lack of ideas being brought forward. I feel like if there was more of an Irish community and great ideas being brought to the table as a means to celebrate, they would be incorporated.
What do you think about Kalamazoo's idea of St. Patrick's Day? In the meantime, here are 10 things that remind us of St. Patrick's Day.