St. Patrick’s Day 2014 on the Outer Banks

Photo taken by Karen Haley for Southern Shores Realty.
Christine Wissman, Beth Bray, and Melanie Mazza sporting St. Patrick’s Day spirit!

I’m feeling the luck of my Irish side this year, predicting sunshine and warmer temperatures.  Waking up for St. Patrick’s Day is not like waking up for any other day.  Here on the Outer Banks, St. Patrick’s Day is taken very seriously.  There are activities going on from sunrise to sunset. Here, you go to sleep with your St. Patrick’s Day outfit planned out.  It has every piece of green from your wardrobe that you can possibly find to wear at one time.  You wake up knowing this day is going to be long, maybe a little cold, and a ton of fun.  Throwing in some festive items like top hats, and beads and you’re all set to go.

outer-banks-leprechaun-runKelly’s Running of the Leprechauns starts off St. Patrick’s Day here on the Outer Banks.  This year they bumped up the ante a little bit from an 8k to a 10k.  Adding another 1.2 miles can make all the difference.  Everyone dresses in his or her best St. Patrick’s Day running attire, while trying to earn the prize at the end of the rainbow.

Whether you place in the top 3 or not, everyone gets a treat at the Kelly’s after party.  There is food to be eaten, drinks to be drank, and a DJ for the Rock’n Leprechaun party.  Serving up their hot and delicious Irish stew, Irish soda bread, sugar cookies, their to-die-for sweet potato biscuits, and to wash it all down… Guinness.  It’s the best way to start your St. Patrick’s Day, burn calories and then indulge!

kellys-obx-gluten-freeAfter that start to St. Patrick’s Day, it’s time to prep for the parade.  Only a few short hours and over 100 vendors will travel a mile North on Beach Road.  This is the biggest St. Patrick’s Day parade in the state of North Carolina.  There is a theme every year, and this year it’s “Wear your green, but wave your red, white and blue”.  Time to take matters seriously; there are awards on the line.  They are given for best float, best overall, best band, and 2 observers will win best route theme!  Pack a cooler; bring extra layers and a rain jacket just in case it’s cold or rainy because there is going to be a good 3 hours of parade time.

st-patricks-day-parade_0St. Patrick’s Day is one of those holidays that gives everyone a reason to get together.  After the parade, it’s time feast on the annual green food and drinks.  Kelly’s also puts on a great Irish themed dinner special for the weekend.  A day doesn’t get much better when you have these key ingredients: Outer Banks, holiday that brings us together, friends, family, good food, early AM running event, and the biggest parade in North Carolina.  Luckily, you can find that all in one place here on St. Patrick’s Day weekend.

Parade Photo Credit: OBXentertainment.com