Campus Column: The best day of the year is upon us


Photo by Alejandro Luengo on Unsplash

Nicolette Noce, Campus Editor

The feast of Saint Patrick is a day full of traditions I hold close to my heart. Saint Patrick is celebrated for his success in bringing Christianity to the country of Ireland around the year 432. He died on March 17, 461 and by that time, the country was predominantly Christian.

 The first recorded celebration of Saint Patrick in the U.S. occurred in Boston in the year 1737 when a group of Irish men celebrated the saint over a dinner party. Cleveland hosted its first Saint Patrick’s Day parade in 1842.

 As more Irish immigrants poured into the U.S., anti-Irish racism emerged. With a lack of apparent belonging and a lot of homesickness, Irish immigrants needed a way to integrate themselves into the country. Saint Patrick’s Day celebrations first began in cities that were heavily populated by the Irish, causing the holiday to become far more widespread.

 The reason I love Saint Patrick’s Day so much is because of my Irish descent. Both my maternal grandparents are from Belfast, Ireland. They are the sweetest people I’ll ever know. Although my grandfather died almost 18 years ago, I and others still remember him fondly.

 My grandmother, on the other hand, is 89 years old, and she is as Irish as they come. For my entire life, we have gathered every year at her home to celebrate this day. We eat corned beef and play Irish records on the console record player. We dance and celebrate while wearing green from head to toe.

Usually the night gets out of hand, which always makes for a great story. One year, my uncle Benji came to celebrate all the way from Ireland. He stood up on the dining room table and did an Irish jig. … He has yet to be invited back.

 Still, no matter the circumstances, St. Patrick’s Day is always a day I look forward to — except for this year. With COVID-19 still lurking, my family has been forced to cancel this greatly anticipated party, which means no corned beef and no Irish jigs.

 So please, COVID-19, for the love of this great Irish saint (I’m talking about my grandmother), please do not stick around till next year.