The mountains of Western North Carolina have always boasted hillsides of lush, forest green rhododendron thickets, rolling pastures of chartreuse fescue and orchard grass swaying in the breeze and hunter green fraiser fir trees standing fast and firm against the winter winds but come March 19th, we will be looking EMERALD green in honor of St. Patrick’s Day. Many of the inhabitants of the highlands of North Carolina can trace their ancestral roots back to Ireland or Scotland. The topography, climate and terrain of Western North Carolina are similar to that of the Fair Isles and immigrants from their shores felt a familiarity and fondness for the landscape that seemed so much like their home. People with surnames such as Quinn, Thompson, Sullivan, Carroll, Burke, McMurray,Kennedy, Smith and Kelly are descendants of those first immigrants from Ireland and have a little of the “luck of the Irish” running through their veins, or so the legend goes. Even if you don’t hail from “The Emerald Isle”, you can still get your Irish on this March and celebrate with style! Below is a list of several St. Patrick’s Day events happening in our area.
Hendersonville, North Carolina will be throwing a March of the Leprechauns Parade in downtown on mainstreet. There will be loads of Irish spirit with not only a parade but also entertainment, children’s events, vendors and a festival following.. There are dozens of excellent restaurants and side street cafe’s on main street that will be serving up traditional Irish fair but for an authentic dining experience, Hannah Flannagan’s Pub and Eatery shouldn’t be passed up. Their menu boasts such Irish dishes as Corned beef and cabbage, Shepherd’s pie, Irish stew and Banger’s and Mash. They have a live band each evening that plays in a warm and inviting atmosphere similar to that of an evening by the fire with friends.
Asheville, North Carolina is also hosting an array of events honoring old St. Patrick as well. They are hosting a four day event of “green” activities beginning on March 14th.
Friday, March 14th:
Live Irish Music and $10 pasta dinner at the Renaissance Asheville hotel
1 Thomas Wolfe Plaza
Listen to traditional Irish trio, Chulrua at Jack of the Wood
Saturday, March 15th:
The St. Patrick’s Day 10K, presented by the Asheville Track club
Tours of My Native Ireland (Ash how to qualify for a free pint!)
12 Battery park
Pulitzer prize-nominated local writer, David Hopes will be reading his authentic Irish poetry at Jack of the Wood
Sunday, March 16th:
Traditional Irish Music at jack of the Wood
Monday, March 17th (St. Patrick’s Day)
Live music and drinks at My Native Ireland
Asheville Saint Patricks Day Shamrock run 10K
No matter what your fancy this Saint Patrick’s day, Western North Carolina has ways to help you “Get Your Green On!” In the meantime, keep this Irish saying close to your heart:
May the road rise up to meet you,
may the wind be always at your back,
May the warm rays of sun fall upon your home,
And may the hand of a friend always be near.