By Sabina Mollot
This year, St. Patrick’s Day, March 17, falls on a Friday, opening the options somewhat for those looking to celebrate even through the wee hours of the holiday.
And, as always, many venues are opening earlier than usual for those who want something to do before or after the parade in midtown.
At Kips Bay bar Paddy Reilly’s, there’ll be live music starting at 1 p.m. Irish rock tunes will be played by Craig and Tom Fitzpatrick from 1-4 p.m. and from 4-5 p.m. house band Raging Horn Pipes will take the stage. A staffer there also said guests can expect a few giveaways. There will be a cover charge that has yet to be determined, but the staffer said it would probably be ten dollars. Doors open at 9 a.m. and don’t close again until 4 a.m. Take note that the place has no kitchen, so anyone hoping for an authentic Irish meal may want to get a reservation in advance at Irish pub Molly’s Shebeen or Pete’s Tavern, which will also have a full Irish menu, for lunch or dinner.
Paddy Reilly’s, 519 Second Avenue at 29th Street, (212) 686-1210
Trips to haunted houses aren’t just for Halloween if the Irish ghosts at East Village’s Merchants’ House have anything to say about it. On Friday, Merchant’s House presents two walking tours, one of which is the “Dark Days of Winter Candlelight Ghost Tour” at 6:30 p.m. According to the Merchant’s House website, “doors slam, floorboards creak, voices call into the dead of night. Venture into the shadows of history to see the house where seven family members died and hear true tales of inexplicable occurrences from the people who actually experienced them.” The tour is 50-60 minutes. Merchant’s House is a museum with a mission of educating the public about the domestic life of a wealthy merchant family and their four Irish servants from 1835-1865. For tickets $35, visit merchantshouse.org.
Another tour is “A Tribute to the Tredwells’ Irish Servants with Bridget Murphy” at 12:30, 2 and 3:30 p.m. For this tour, guests will be invited to climb the narrow stairs to the fourth floor where the servants’ quarters used to be and where four Irish servants who worked for the building’s onetime owners, the Tredwell family, lived and work. Guests will learn why it would have been impossible to run a home like Merchant’s House without them. Charge is the museum admission, $15 general, $10 students and seniors (over 65), children under 12 free.
Merchant’s House, 29 East 4th Street, merchantshouse.org
Irish Repertory Theatre in Chelsea has not one but two plays by Irish playwrights to choose from on Friday at 8 p.m.
“Crackskull Row,” originally scheduled to end its run on March 13 has been extended to March 26. The drama, revolving around a mother and son, is described as the story of an Irish family’s desperate actions and forbidden loves. Recommended for mature audiences. Tickets are $50.
Also playing at the theater, through April 23, is “The Emperor Jones,” written by Eugene O’Neill, directed by Ciaran O’Reilly. This play is the story of Brutus Jones, a despot who ascends the throne in the Caribbean using lies, intimidation and the politics of fear. Tickets are $50-$70.
Irish Repertory Theatre, 132 W. 22nd St., irishrep.org, (212) 727-2737
Those who are looking to authentically celebrate Irish culture may want to consider helping the Irish Arts Center during its yearly book event. Volunteers for this event spend their St. Patrick’s Day handing out thousands of free books by celebrated Irish writers to commuters at transit hubs throughout the city. The event runs from 7 a.m. to midnight. At different subway stations.
The Irish Arts Center, 553 West 51st Street east of 11th Avenue, irishartscenter.org, (212) 757-3318
This year, The NYC St. Patrick’s Day Parade can be viewed along 5th Avenue between 44th Street and 79th Street from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. The parade can also be watched live on NBCNewYork.com beginning at 11 a.m.
Other St. Patrick’s events throughout the week
Irish violin duo Sephira will perform at The Cutting Room on Thursday, March 16 at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $20 in advance, $25 the day of show, with a $20 food/drink minimum.
44 East 32nd Street, (212) 691-1900 thecuttingroomnyc.com
The St. Patrick’s Weekend Irish Tour will be hosted by Big Onion Tours on Saturday, March 18 at noon. Participants will explore the former “Little Ireland” district of the Lower East Side, between City Hall and Houston Street and hear about the tremendous role of Irish immigrants in the history of New York City. The guide will also discuss why St. Patrick’s Day is more popular here than in Ireland. Stops could include: the founding site of the Ancient Order of Hibernians, Al Smith’s home, the Five Points, the first Catholic church in the city, and sites associated with Tammany Hall, Thomas Addis Emmet, and many others. Cost is $25, $20 for seniors and $15 for full-time students.
Make a reservation online at bigonion.com.
Epiphany Church will hold a free concert on Sunday, March 19 at 4 p.m. featuring its adult choir and guest instrumentalists. Reservations not necessary.
Epiphany Church, Second Avenue and 22nd Street