FARGO — Commemorating the death of the patron saint of Ireland, St. Patrick's Day is a time where Irish-blooded folks from around the world don their green hats, lace up their dancing shoes and prepare for a night of celebrating their heritage. But if drinking green beer or tasting the finest Irish whiskey isn't your thing, consider these five ways to celebrate the Emerald Isle without hurting your liver.
OK, I get it — few of us like to be the one who is sitting back, waiting for last call, while our pals glug green beer and shoot Jameson.
But here's the thing: Somebody's gotta do it.
And thankfully, this St. Paddy's Day is making it a little easier by falling on a Sunday. Waking up hangover-less with your dignity and your financial status still intact is an amazing feeling. Plus, sometimes bars will give free pop to the valiant designated drivers as a perk for staying sober. Plus, laughing as your buddies make fools of themselves is kind of fun, right?
Prepare an Irish feast
Corned beef and cabbage, Irish stew and soda bread, oh my dayz.
To get in the spirit, try your hand at creating a traditional Irish feast. Perhaps an Irish stout and steak hand pie may tickle your fancy. Or some Irish-style fish and chips featuring breaded and deep-fried cod or haddock alongside a hearty portion of thickly-cut potato chips paired with a glass of riesling.
To finish off your Irish meal, try a homemade Irish cream cheesecake or shamrock cupcake. Both are super easy to make and will ensure adults and kids alike will be jigging all night long. Or, find your favorite recipe and give it a try.
One of the more fun traditions of St. Patrick's Day is the head-to-toe green dress code — especially when the alternative to donning a bit of color reminiscent of the rolling green hills is risking getting pinched by those enforcing the laws of the holiday.
Prior to green becoming the color associated with the patron saint of Ireland, blue was the star of the show. However, things changed in the 18th century when the shamrock became a national symbol. Because of the popularity of the clover-like plant, combined with the landscape of the country, the color green stuck.
Some wear the color to hide from leprechauns, who can't see anyone who wears green. Sporting the hue is also said to bring good luck, while others wear it to honor their Irish roots.
Learn a jig
For those who like to get a little more festive (and active) in their celebrations, dancing a little jig is just the way to go — just be sure to keep your arms straight.
The McDonald School of Irish and International Dance in Fargo is the place to learn. Channel your inner "Lord of the Dance" with founder Marureen McDonald-Hins, who started Fargo's Celtic Festival back in 2004.
If you can't get into a dance lesson before the big day, find a video on YouTube and "leap, 2, 3" your way to a rowdy good time. Perhaps a "So You Think You Can (Irish) Dance" night may be in order?
Enjoy your favorite Irish celebrity
To wind down after a long day of dancing, dining and designated driving, take the time to relax and enjoy a cinematic experience featuring some of Ireland's best.
For some beautiful Irish scenery, check out the romantic comedy "Leap Year," featuring Amy Adams and Irishman Matthew Goode, set in the beautiful Irish countryside.
If a little more action and adventure is what you're hoping for, take a gander at one of Irish-born actor Liam Neeson's feature films, including "The Grey," "Kinsey" or any of the many "Taken" movies.