Photo via jill111
With St. Patrick’s Day just around the corner, many of us have visions of green beer and clover-themed cocktails dancing in our heads. March 17 is easily one of the most social holidays, and it’s also an excellent chance to support your local community. The best part is, you don’t have to give up the fun! Here are a few ideas for having a blast and making a difference in your neighborhood this St. Patrick’s Day.
Trade the crowded bars for something cozier
Most areas have a go-to pub for St. Paddy’s Day festivities, but with everyone in the community headed there it can be tough to get a drink, much less chat comfortably with your friends. Instead of forcing your way through crowds, opt for a smaller independent bar. Small businesses are a vital part of the economy, whether you’re in a large metropolitan area or a smaller suburb. You’ll probably see just as many food and drink specials, and you won’t have to battle through hoards of people to take advantage. Even if it’s only your first stop and you end up heading to a bigger venue later, support an independently-owned bar this St. Patrick’s Day.
Find a themed 5k or fun run
The days and weekends leading up to the the holiday are often filled with charity events hosted by bars, so grab some green face paint, your most adventurous buddies, and a lucky charm, and get involved! Your local newspaper will be a great resource for finding St. Patrick’s Day themed events, from costume contests to dog parades to fun runs. You’ll get to meet all kinds of people from your community while giving to a good cause, plus you’ll really earn your leisure time at the bar afterward!
Have a charity kickball tournament
How often do you long for the days of recess and kickball? Let St. Paddy’s Day be your excuse to play and donate to a worthy cause at the same time. Put together a charity kickball tournament in your area and reach out to local bars and restaurants about being sponsors. You can incorporate a costume contest with special prizes for categories like most inventive, most authentic, and best coordinated family ensembles. It’s an excellent way to network and bring together the community for a common goal — and you can all celebrate together in your green gear at the sponsors’ establishments later!
Create themed T-shirts
If you’re not really the hat-and-fake-beard type, create your own T-shirt to wear for St. Paddy’s Day! You can create unique attire for your friend group to wear for the evening, making it easier to keep track of everyone and helping you stand out in a fun way. You can even talk to the business you’ll be going to about selling the shirts throughout the night and donating the proceeds to a local charity or neighbor in need. Half the fun of the holiday is seeing everyone’s outfits, so at the very least you’ll have a great conversation-starter while out with your community.
Organize a fundraiser for a local little league
March means spring training for professional baseball players, but for little league players it’s a time to get excited and think ahead to the spring or summer season. Maybe your own child’s team could use some new equipment or you’ve heard your co-worker talk about their child’s team — either way there’s likely a little league in your area that could benefit from a St. Patrick’s Day fundraiser! Reach out to a local restaurant or bar about having some kind of a fundraising item during the holiday. It could be a special plate of food, shot, or merchandise, and the proceeds can go to a team in your community. Do your part to talk up the specials both before the event and during so everyone can take advantage. Most people will love the opportunity to give (and get something fun in return), and you might even inspire a few fans to fill the bleachers come ball season!
St. Patrick’s Day is a great opportunity for both individuals and local businesses to give back. Partner up to make a difference together, and make the most of the social experience!