Bring the NYC Experience Home this St. Patrick’s Day

Before 2020, NYC natives, visiting tourists, and East Coasters alike practiced the long-held tradition of venturing into the heart of Manhattan on St. Patrick’s Day to enjoy the festivities. What festivities, you may ask? Well of course, there was the late morning parade, but before, during, and after that parade, folks celebrated in Irish pubs drinking proper pints. New York City’s St. Patrick’s Day parade is sadly cancelled again this year and instead going virtual. BUT, just because we can’t celebrate in the manner we’re accustomed to, doesn’t mean we should forgo the rowdy Saint Paddy’s Day traditions that are typically found along 5th Ave or in NYC’s Luck of the Irish Pub Crawl. Bring the NYC experience home this St. Patrick’s Day with this list of festive activities!

All the Best Moments, St. Patrick's Day fashion illustration
Illustrated by Sarah Ditterline

At Home Pub Crawl

Picture this: infamous NYC St. Patrick’s Day bars like Blarney Stone, Bar None and Plug Uglies meets your living room. Stay with me here.

It’s casual, it’s rowdy, and it’s a bit grimy, but that’s the true experience. Deck out your living room and kitchen with dive bar decor and dim the lighting. Think: chalkboard menus, wooden serving platters, and plenty of pint glasses. Prepare to play some rather loud, traditional St. Patrick’s Day bar music that’s folk style, yet eclectic.

Need help with a playlist? Try this custom St. Patrick’s Day Playlist on my All the Best Moments Spotify Account.

Invite that punchy green color into your home with pennants, four leaf clovers, shamrocks and ivy garlands. Green yourself out, and accessorize your friends with green wigs, leprechaun hats and beaded necklaces with shot glasses attached.

Play bar games like darts, pool, Jenga, beer pong, and flip cup, or go all out with karaoke. Stream the virtual parade in the background.

St. Patrick's Day themed solo cups and gold coins

Serve shots of Jameson, Irish car bombs, and classic pub food. If you want to take the NYC St. Patrick’s Day experience to the next level, serve a signature Irish drink, like a Massey cocktail with Irish whiskey, out of individual flasks.

Keep the drinks flowing and the folk music on high, and you’ll have yourself an at home pub crawl atmosphere in no time!

Floor is Lava: Pot of Gold Edition

NYC on Saint Patrick’s Day involves drinks around every corner, and the luck of the Irish calls for a quintessential pot of gold. So why not combine the two? Thus I bring you, Floor is Lava: Pot of Gold Edition.

Fair warning, this game is best played at the beginning of your gathering, before the festivities get carried away. It’s a GREAT icebreaker, and is sure to jump start those rowdy NYC St. Paddy’s Day vibes.

Four leaf clover table decorations

Gather as many throw pillows and blankets as you can, and spread them out strategically around your living room furniture. The goal is to leave enough space to create a bit of a challenge between safe spots (if you’re competitive, you know what I mean).

Pick up between 3-5 nips (tiny bottles of booze) per person, but don’t be the host that makes people drink the whole thing straight. Instead, empty out the different kinds of liquor into their own respective glasses. Create mini mixed drinks that pair well with each liquor (try these Shamrocked Shooters or these Irish Margaritas), then pour those mixtures back into the nip bottles. Make sure to use the right nip bottle for the liquor you used in the mixed drink, because some people don’t tolerate (insert liquor here) very well.

St. Patrick's Day bar

Disperse the nips around all of the “lava” areas that are in-between your pillows and blankets. Ask your guests to start at one end of the room, standing on a shared blanket, and make their way across the room to the pot of gold, without stepping on the lava. When someone lands on a pillow or blanket, they’re safe. If they fall into the lava, they need to drink the nip that’s closest to them!

St. Patrick's Day gold chocolate coins

Don’t forget the key rule: only one player can make a move at any given time. This way, folks will have to hold their awkward positions a bit longer than usual (perhaps I’m the competitive one 😉).

As the host, you get to decide what’s in the pot of gold. I’d recommend picking up some chocolate coins, because… nostalgia.

St. Patrick's Day pot of gold with chocolate coins

St. Patrick’s Day… But Make it Classy

If you’re the kind of person that likes to indulge in St. Patrick’s Day celebrations, but without all of the drinks to imbibe, I’m here for you. Your lowkey, but still festive, St. Paddy’s Day at home calls for another form of indulgence; baking.

There are endless recipes for authentic Irish comfort food to host a seated dinner with (think of it like Thanksgiving, but swap the turkey for corned beef and cabbage). Although, I personally prefer to satisfy my sweet tooth, and if you’re reading this, I think you might too!

St. Patrick's Day dessert and Irish coffee

Your baked goods don’t need to be authentic, or complex, to be celebratory. Pick up a four leaf clover shaped cookie cutter, bake a batch of sugar cookies, and frost them in varying hues of green to create an aesthetically pleasing (and very Instagrammable) ombré pattern.

St. Patrick's Day four leaf clover cookies

If you do want to dabble with a dessert drink, try an Irish coffee, or make it a milkshake!

🍀Disclaimer: this blog post is intended for readers 21+. Please drink responsibly!🍀

Have a question about something specific? Ask it on my Q&A page!

Read more from the Happy Hostess.