Greensboro’s ten best things to do for St. Paddy’s
Go to Keegan’s
Keegan’s Pub; 2506 Battleground Ave.; 336.288.0100
Keegan’s first opened their doors on St. Patrick’s Day ten years ago, and this anniversary party is sure to be the best yet. With tons of draft Irish beers, green shooters and traditional food like corned beef and shepherd’s pie (we hear they make great chicken wings, too), they’re sure to pull in a huge crowd over in the north end of town. And with live music by Face First, they may get more than their share of phone calls from neighbors complaining about the noise.
Go to the Green Party
100 block of Summit Avenue; 6 p.m. until 2 a.m.; Free
Based in and around Solaris Tapas Restaurant, this event is the brainchild of Allen McDavid, who also brought the Rib Fest and the Halloween Mystic Karnival to downtown Greensboro. Admission is free, and the musical lineup includes The Angry Canadians, Magazyne, The Choosy Beggars and The 5Ls (see story on p. 26). Corporate sponsors include HITZ 94 FM, the Greensboro Center City Marketing Alliance and YES! Weekly magazine.
Go to an Irish bar in High Point
We don’t know why, but there seems to be an inordinate amount of Irish bars in the Furniture City: Cleary’s [2140 N. Main St.; 336.882.0600], the Claddagh [130 E. Parris Ave.; 336.841.0521] and Finley’s [1614 N. Main St.; 336.883.4113] all exist within High Point’s borders and will all be celebrating the wearing o’ the green. The Triangle, though not technically an Irish bar, also has some St. Patrick’s plans in the works.
Go to Ireland
The real party is back in the old country, where if you order a green beer you’re likely to get worked over pretty good by a band of football toughs. No tickets? No sweat ‘— you can leave today on Delta’s flight 985 out of PTI and, after a brief stopover in Atlanta, you can be in Dublin by 9:40 a.m. on March 17th. The return flight leaves the Dublin airport just after 9 a.m. and will have you back in Greensboro before ‘“The Simpsons’” airs at 8 Sunday night. Total cost for one ticket: $2,383.65. Don’t blame us for not planning ahead.
Have some Irish food
Bert’s Seafood Grille; 4608 W. Market St.; 336.854.2314
Contrary to popular belief, boiling things in a pot of water until they turn grey is not the extent of Irish cooking. Every St. Patrick’s Day at Bert’s Seafood Grille, Owner and Executive Chef Mary Lacklen trots out a menu of traditional Ersin fare. Try the beef and Guinness stew or the house-made Irish soda bread. She’ll also be serving a traditional Irish oyster pie and, of course, corned beef and cabbage with boiled red potatoes.
Get drunk on Irish whiskey
There’s nothing quite like a snootful of Ireland’s favorite export. I myself am partial to a couple of fingers of Jameson’s, neat, to sip alongside my St. Patrick’s Day beers (neat, for the uninitiated, means poured straight out of the bottle ‘— no ice, no mixers, nothing but the booze and the dust in the glass). Most bars also carry Bushmill’s, which was once considered bad form to drink: it was exported by Protestants. Power’s and Tullamore Dew are also acceptable, but if you really want something special try a few belts of the Bushmill’s Single Malt, easily the finest Irish whiskey that’s ever wet my lips.
Tip back a pint of Irish beer
You know you want one: the soft bitter taste of a Harp; a Guinness with the suds gently drifting to the bottom of the glass; perhaps an amber Bass in an oversize pint glass or a Murphy’s Stout with a nitrous charge in the can or a Smithwick’s (pronounced ‘Smeddick’s’), which is a bit harder to find. And even if you don’t want one, get one anyway because it’s the right thing to do.
Get some bagpipes
Greensboro Music Co.; 500 N. Greene St.; 336.279.8833
Bagpipes are hard to come by in the Gate City, but they’ll order them for you at the Greensboro Music Co. and you can pick them up in a couple of days. Prices start at about $300, but the full-size set with natural cocus wood and imitation ivory mounts will run upwards of $450. ‘“They used to use these things in wars,’” says John Clontz, president and owner of Greensboro Music. ‘“They’d send out a line of them and it would terrorize their opponents. Then they’d attack.’” So you can have fun with these things all year round.
Watch The Quiet Man
This 1952 classic starring John Wayne and Maureen O’Hara and directed by John Ford tells the tale of a disgraced American boxer returning to his roots in the ‘auld country.’ The movie features a great performance by the Duke, an uncredited cameo by Ken Curtis (better known as ‘Festus’ from ‘“Gunsmoke’”) and one of the best fight scenes ever recorded on film until the street brawl between ‘Rowdy’ Roddy Piper and Keith David in They Live in 1988. That was awesome.
Hit the St. Patrick’s Day Street Festival
M’Coul’s Public House; 110 W. McGee St.; 336.378.0204
Down on the far end of Elm Street the party starts early ‘— 6 a.m., to be exact, with a traditional Irish breakfast to put a bottom in your stomach before doing all that drinking. A 12-hour day of music kicks off at 11 a.m. with Mulligan’s Banned, followed by performances from Blue Bambooza, The Sky Kings, Jen Porter and the Most Fabulous Band and national recording artists Lifehouse. There will also be kids’ stuff, door prizes and a Limerick contest. Ticket prices start at $10.