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March 16. 2014 9:18PM

Celebrations o’plenty for St. Patrick’s Day across NH

Every March 17, the celebration of St. Patrick’s Day spreads well beyond the Emerald Isle’s borders to locations around New Hampshire.

What began as a religious feast day for the patron saint of Ireland has become an international phenomenon celebrating Irish culture with parades, shamrocks, food, drinking and lots of green.

Locally, you’ll see people wearing leprechaun hats and drinking green beer all over town. And remember to always designate a sober driver before drinking or call a taxi or take public transportation to get home safely.

Irish pubs in Manchester have full schedules of St. Patrick’s Day-related entertainment planned.

The Shaskeen opens at 5:30 a.m. today, and will pour its first pint at 6 a.m. Breakfast will be served until 11 a.m., with music starting at noon. Acts like Jordan Tirrell-Wysocki and friends, Demijohn Music Clan, Aldous Collins Band, and Bruce Jacques are scheduled to perform.

Strange Brew Tavern kicks off its St. Patrick’s Day festivities at 9 a.m. Events run all day, up until last call. The day’s menu will include corned beef, their signature Guinness Stew, and everyone’s favorite beers from the Emerald Isle. The musical lineup includes Andy Happel, Bradigan, The Dave Foley Band, David Rousseau, and the New Hampshire Police Pipes and Drums.

Murphy’s Taproom will feature Irish music, drinks and food beginning at 9 a.m.

Today’s forecast calls for highs in the mid-20s, meaning the remaining snowcover won’t disappear any time soon.

The white stuff could have owners of five New Hampshire ski areas seeing green — and skiers saving some — thanks to St. Patrick’s Day deals of $17 for a day of skiing and riding.

Waterville Valley, Bretton Woods, Attitash, Wildcat and Ragged Mountain are all offering the $17 pass.

Ragged Mountain in Danbury is offering the discounted price if you purchase a ticket in advance through its website, www.raggedmtn.com.

Waterville Valley, in addition to the bargain price, is offering an apres ski party at the Buckets and T-Bar’s restaurants today, featuring Guinness beer.Anyone who like to dress up for the day should head to Gunstock Mountain in Gilford, where skiers who show up dressed like a leprechaun can ski or ride for $17. At Mount Sunapee in Newbury, patrons are invited to take part in a St. Patrick’s Day Shamrock Hunt, looking for shamrocks hidden on the mountain to win prizes. The day is capped off with a menu of traditional Irish fare at Goosefeathers Pub.

In Concord, Irish step dancers from The McGonagle School will perform at The Barley House today at 3:15 p.m.

The New Hampshire state police recommend the following steps to help ensure a safe and happy St. Patrick’s Day:

• Plan a safe way home before the festivities begin.

• Before drinking, designate a sober driver and leave your car keys at home.

• If you’re impaired, use a taxi, call a sober friend or family member, or use public transportation to get home safely.

• If available, use your community’s sober ride program.

• If you see a drunk driver on the road, call 911.

• If you know people who are about to drive while impaired, take their keys and help them make other arrangements to get to where they are going safely.

The St. Patrick’s Day fun doesn’t end today in New Hampshire. On Friday, the St. Peter’s Home on Kelley Street will host a St. Patrick’s Day parade at 3 p.m. Folks can get their Irish on again on March 30, when Manchester hosts the 19th annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade at noon, preceded by the Northeast Delta Dental Kids Leprechaun Runs at 10:45 a.m., and the Shamrock Shuffle at 11:15 a.m.

pfeely@unionleader.com


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