More than half of Americans are not aware that St. Patrick is the patron saint of Ireland, according to a new survey.
A new study commissioned by Tullamore Dew Irish Whiskey showed that 51 percent of Americans were stumped when asked about the true meaning of St. Patrick’s Day.
The online study was conducted by Harris Interactive in January, among over 2,000 adults aged 21 and over.
The results show that a mere 25 percent knew that Ireland’s patron saint was not born on Irish soil.
Some 34 percent thought March 17 was St. Patrick’s birthday when it is actually the day he died.
More than 25 percent believe the popular myth that St. Patrick rid Ireland of snakes.
Meanwhile, only 18 percent of respondents agreed that celebrating March 17 represented the true spirit of Ireland.
"At Tullamore Dew, we set out to represent the Irish spirit and culture in an honest and genuine way - we call it Irish True," said Tim Herlihy, of Ireland's County Louth and Brand Ambassador for Tullamore Dew in the United States.
"Americans have long embraced St. Patrick's Day, but this year we want to ensure they know the true story and encourage them to celebrate this special day the Irish True way."
Tullamore Dew Tullamore Dew is the second largest Irish whiskey in the world in the fastest growing category.
Among the Tullamore Dew suggestions for celebrating St. Patrick's Day are:
*Kick off the day with a hearty, traditional Irish breakfast; it's going to be a long day and you'll need sustenance – my favorites include bacon rashers (real back bacon, if you can get it), both white and black pudding, fried eggs and a strong cup of Irish breakfast tea
* Take in a local St. Patrick's Day parade; in Ireland, a parade can be found in a big city complete with massive floats right down to a simple tractor parade in a small village. Every city, town and village has its own parade on St. Patrick's Day. In America it's no different – go out there and show your support!
* Catch some Irish entertainment; pull up a chair at your favorite pub and listen to a traditional session band or, if you're in NYC, get tickets to the Craic Festival for the best in Irish film and music
* Go out and find an Irish True bar or pub; forget the green beer and shamrocks on the wall; an Irish True establishment has its own character and way of doing things; there's sense of community and camaraderie and, above all, friendship
* Have a St. Patrick's Day toast at the ready; toasting is a big part of Irish culture; it should speak from the heart and is meant to be shared with those most important to you. So, gather your mates, buy a round of Tullamore Dew and use this toast for St. Patrick's Day.