Bethlehem is going green for St. Patrick's weekend! Failte Festival runs March 13 through March 16, in the lead-up to the big day. 

St. Patrick’s Day is the perfect time to “go green”, and this year Bethlehem is doing it in a big way! They have Irish comedy, parades, and live music; something for everyone in the family. Together, Donegal Square and McCarthy’s Red Stag Pub and Whiskey Bar are the Lehigh Valley’s Celtic destination. All year they bring you “the Best of Ireland and the British Isles”, but at this time of year, they become St. Patrick’s headquarters!

Irish-Americans (and everyone who becomes Irish in mid-March) love to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day. In Ireland, however, it was not always a time for shenanigans. In fact, until 20 or 30 years ago, St. Patrick’s Day was relatively quiet and a day to attend mass celebrating Saint Patrick, the patron saint of Ireland. But there must be a wee bit of shenanigans! From Friday, March 13 through Monday, March 16 there is an array of fun, family-friendly St. Patrick’s activities in Bethlehem, PA that you will not want to miss.

The third annual Failte Festival (Failte means “welcome” in the Irish language) takes place Friday, March 13 through Sunday, March 15 at the Charles A. Brown Ice House in Bethlehem. Three days, six shows; a proper Irish music “trad fest” right in the Lehigh Valley! Each show is headlined by an artist seen and loved at Musikfest and Celtic Classic. They are featuring The Rogue Diplomats (March 13 at 7:30 PM), The Jeremiahs (March 14 at 2:15 PM and 8:15 PM), The O’Grady Quinlan Dancers and Seamus Kelleher (March 14 at 5:00 PM), and Seamus Kennedy (March 15 at 2:00 PM and 4:15 PM). Tickets $20, available at Donegal Square, 534 Main Street, Bethlehem PA or online at www.donegalsquare.com. Ticket packages are also available.

Head to Donegal Square on Saturday, March 14 at 11:00 AM for the Best Legs in a Kilt Contest! Strut your stuff and show your tartan for the title of “Best Legs” and to support a great cause.  A portion of the $15 entry fee benefits the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. Prizes are awarded to the top three contestants! Register in-store or online at www.donegalsquare.com by March 14 at 10:30 AM.

The Best Legs in a Kilt contest at Donegal Square

The Best Legs in a Kilt contest at Donegal Square

Immediately following the Best Legs in a Kilt Contest is the Parade of Shamrocks. The parade, brought to you by Celtic Cultural Alliance (hosts of the Celtic Classic), steps off at 1:00 PM and winds through Bethlehem’s historic North Side. Visit www.celticfest.org for details.

On Monday, March 16 at 7:00 PM, McCarthy’s Red Stag Pub and Whiskey Bar is having a special St. Patrick’s Dinner. This multi-course menu features dishes inspired by Irish Chef Terry McCoy and his new cookbook “Saint Patrick’s Plate”. Chef McCoy was inspired by the people, places, myths and legends associated with Ireland’s most famous patron saint. Details at www.redstagpub.com.

There are so many ways to “Go Green” this St. Patrick’s weekend in Bethlehem. Whether you are Irish or not, get downtown and bring your family and friends to join in the fun!