By Caroline Fontein
It’s that time of year again when green beer flows like wine and everyone regardless of their heritage has an excuse to drink. That’s right St. Patrick’s Day 2011 is almost here, and Vegas is celebrating well, Vegas style. From Mexican cantinas to authentic Irish pubs, you’ll find plenty of places on the Las Vegas Strip where the luck of the Irish has gone full throttle. If it’s green beer, Irish whiskey, live entertainment and authentic Irish food you’re after, Vegas has it. Here’s a list of all the events happening for the greenest holiday of the year.
45th Annual Southern Nevada Sons of Erin St. Patrick’s Day Parade & Festival in Henderson
Where: Henderson Events Plaza
200 S. Water Street
Henderson, NV 89015
This celebration starts on March 17 at the Henderson Events Plaza on 200 S. Water Street with a carnival, festival, live entertainment and a St. Patrick’s Day Parade on March 19. Admission to the festival is free. However, some specific activities may charge a fee. The carnival features a variety of midway games and rides. At the festival portion of this event you’ll find two stages for live entertainment and food, beverage and souvenir vendors. Carnival times are: 5 – 10 p.m. March 17 – 18; 10 a.m. – 10 p.m. March 19; 10 a.m. – 8 p.m. March 20. Live entertainment times are: 5 – 9 p.m. March 17 – 18; 12 p.m. – 9 p.m. March 19; 12 p.m. – 6 p.m. March 20. Attendees will also have the opportunity to view an assortment of classic vehicles, hot rods and motorcycles displayed within the Water Street District, from Basic Road to Atomic Street at 12 p.m. – 5 p.m. on March 19. The St. Patrick’s Day Parade also takes place on March 19 and begins at 10 a.m. The parade features more than 100 entries including festive floats, Celtic dancers, bagpiers and marchings bands that will travel the mile-long route on Water Street from Ocean Avenue to Victory Road.
J.C. Whooloughan Irish Pub at JW Marriott
Where: 221 N. Rampart Blvd.
Las Vegas, NV 89128
When one day isn’t enough to celebrate J.C. Whooloughan at JW Marriott turns the party barometer up a few notches with a six-day celebration starting March 11 through March 17. The festivities kick off with Irish happy hour from 5 to 7 p.m. on March 11 – 12 and 14 – 16 featuring $4 pints of Guinness, Harp and Smithwick’s. Live music by the Wild Celts starts at 8 p.m. and goes until midnight on March 11 – 12. On March 13 it’s a family affair with entertainment provided by Martin Percival School of Irish Dance and John Windsor. Admission is $25 per person. Children 10 and under are $15. Seating is available from 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. and reservations are advised and can be made by calling (702) 869-7725. Entertainment and Irish happy hour abounds on the eve of St. Patrick’s Day (March 16). On March 17 it’s the grand event with doors opening at 10 a.m. (that’s right, get your drink on early). Traditional bagpipes launch the entertainment line-up at noon followed by John Windsor, Nick Manterra & Fidler, Vegas U2, Cletus & the Sweat and the Wild Celts providing continuous live music throughout the day. At 2 p.m. the backyard opens with live entertainment provided by Tartanic. Direct from Texas Tartanic creates a high-energy pulse with their contemporary compositions using large drums and bag pipes. A cover charge of $20 starts at 1 p.m. and includes access to both the bar and the outside venue.
St. Patrick’s Day Party at McFadden’s at Rio
Where: 3700 W. Flamingo Rd.
Las Vegas, NV 89103
Get ready for a full day of toasting to the Irish at McFadden’s Restaurant and Saloon at the Rio. Doors open at 7 a.m. so you can really start partying first thing in the morning, but don’t worry there’s food too. McFadden’s hosts all-you-can-eat and drink Kegs and Eggs until 11 a.m. for $20. A traditional Irish breakfast will be served through the day for $10. Come afternoon McFadden’s is helping you avoid that 2 o’clock feeling with a Mid-Day Mind Eraser Open Bar from 2 – 4 p.m. for $20. Also starting at 2 p.m. is an assortment of live entertainment featuring Irish dancing, bagpipe players and a DJ later on in the evening. Patrons who don’t mind showing a little skin can demonstrate their creative and sexy side with the build-your-own green bikini contest offering $1000 cash and a Gibson guitar as the grand prize. Drink specials include: $4 green beers, $6 Irish Car Bombs, $5 green injection shots and $3 green beer bongs.
RHUMBAR at the Mirage
Where: 3400 S. Las Vegas Blvd.
Las Vegas, NV 89109
On March 17 the Caribbean-inspired RHUMBAR at Mirage is going green. They’re also providing sports fans with a spot to watch round one of March Madness. Whether you’re here to tailgate or honor your spontaneous Irish heritage, RHUMBAR offers something everyone can raise a glass to. In light of the holiday the bar is serving $8 burritos made of green eggs and ham and $5 16-ounce cans of Miller Light. Or for $10 you can get the green beer and burrito combo deluxe. Oh wait, it’s Miller time? You’re in luck for $30 guests get six Miller Lights and a souvenir cooler to keep your brew chillin’ for the rest of the night. If you’re in for something a little harder there’s the $6 Milagro Tequila Bloody Marie or the Stolichnaya Green Bloody Mary. In the evening DJ Pony P will keep the party going on the patio.
Rockhouse in front of Imperial Palace
Where: 3535 S. Las Vegas Blvd.
Las Vegas, NV 89109
Known as the ultra-dive bar on the Strip, Rockhouse located in front of Imperial Palace is celebrating St. Patrick’s Day with drink specials designed to make every partier feel Irish by the end of the night. The bar is famous of its 80-ounce guitar drink holder option and on March 17 Rockhouse is offering “green” guitars, along with other drink specials including 100-ounce Super Yards, 64-ounce “green” Super Beers, two-for-one commemorative Bud Light green aluminum bottles and $5 “green” draft beers. You might find yourself seeing leprechauns with drink specials like these.
Celtic Feis at New York-New York
Where: 3790 S. Las Vegas Blvd.
Las Vegas, NV 89109
On March 17 New York-New York is celebrating with a full day of Irish entertainment, music and green beer. The festivities start with an Irish parade of colorful St. Patrick’s Day bagpipers who’ll wind their way through the casino to kick off Celtic Feis at 11 a.m. The party continues at the Brooklyn Bridge and Nine Fine Irishmen with live music from some of the city’s most popular Irish bands.
Rí Rá at Mandalay Bay
Where: 3950 S. Las Vegas Blvd.
Las Vegas, NV 89119
The city’s newest Irish pub Rí Rá at The Shoppes at Mandalay Bay is opening for a celebration in true Irish fashion. Featuring salvaged decor direct from Ireland the bar has a history that dates back to the 1880s in West Cork, Ireland. Offering an array of authentic beers and a whiskey bar this is sure to be a celebration that’ll make you want to do a jig.
McCormick & Schmick’s
Where: 335 Hughes Center Drive
Las Vegas, NV 89109
McCormick & Schmick’s is hosting its 12th annual St. Paddy’s Day celebration on March 17 featuring an assortment of Irish-themed food and drink specials and live entertainment. Some of the menu items include corned beef and cabbage, corned beef sandwiches, lamb stew, Guinness shrimp and corned beef sliders in addition to the famous $1.95 bar menu. Drink specials include pints of green beer and Guinness, Jameson and Baileys specials. The restaurant will also feature “Kiss a Stranger at McCormick and Schmick’s,” where patrons collect “I got kissed at M&S” stickers each time they kiss a fellow patron. Guests have a chance to win a variety of prizes, including gift certificates and promotional items. The schedule is as follows: 11 a.m. lunch specials start; 3:30 p.m. happy hour starts; 4 p.m. dinner specials star; 6 – 9 p.m. live music.
Shamrock Shindig at Silverton
Where: 3333 Blue Diamond Rd.
Las Vegas, NV 89139
Silverton invites everyone to join them on March 17 starting at 5 p.m. for their Shamrock Shindig. Admission is $5. This party features a traditional Irish cabbage and potato eating contest, great music and extensive drink specials including green Jello shots and Green Bud Light. Guests are incouraged to dress in their greenest attire to compete in the Mr. and Mrs. St. Patty’s Day Contest. Contestants will have the opportunity to win a free Apple iPhone for being the biggest St. Patty’s Day enthusiast.
Fremont Street Experience
Where: 425 Fremont St.
Las Vegas, NV 89101
On March 17 Fremont Street Experience is celebrating St. Patrick’s Day with a Pub Crawl, 14 hours of entertainment and of course plenty of drink specials.
The Pub Crawl is on March 17 and starts at 5 p.m. To participate visit here. Pub Crawl discounts will be available between 5 p.m. and midnight. Free parking is available at the Fremont Street Experience parking garage at 425 Fremont Street, (located on the NE corner of Carson & 4th Street) to those who RSVP and check in. Guests who RSVP can check in to pick up wristbands and validate parking near the Fremont Street Experience garage elevators (Mall level – 1st Floor) between 4 and 10 p.m. Check-in is required to receive special offers and guests must be 21 to participate. Drink specials will be available at various locations downtown for those who participate in the Pub Crawl. Properties included in the Pub Crawl are Golden Gate Casino, Fremont Casino, Fitzgerald’s, Four Queens, Binion’s and Hennessey’s Las Vegas.
Drink and other specials for the Pub Crawl include:
- Golden Gate Hotel & Casino
Guinness Specialty Bar: $5 Guinness, Killian’s Irish Red and Harp Irish Lager; $8 Irish Car Bombs for only $8
Outdoor Bars: $5 Miller Lite’s Green Draft Beer for $5; a Special Irish Fog Punch will also be available.
- Fremont Casino (available at all casino bars): $2 Heineken, Corona and Jagermeister Shots, $4 Red Bull Vodka, $0.99 Margaritas
- Fitzgeralds Casino/Hotel
Vue Bar: $2 Tullamore Dew Irish whiskey shots
Stage Bar: $3 Green Beer
- Four Queens Hotel & Casino
Chicago Brew Pub in the Four Queens: Pot of Gold shot (Goldschlager and Crème De Menthe) – $3.50 with wristband and $4 without wristband
- Binion’s Gambling Hall
Benny’s Bullpen: $4 Guinness Cans and Irish Car Bombs, $2 Tullamore Dew whiskey shots
- Hennessey’s Las Vegas
Free Admission and $5 24 oz. Guinness
- Fremont Street Flightlinez
$5 off the purchase of a Flightlinez Combo Package that includes a flight and t-shirt.
Aside from the Pub Crawl Fremont Street will be home to free live entertainment all weekend long. The entertainment schedule features tribute acts paying homage to U2 and Red Hot Chili Peppers along with authentic Irish dancers, Celtic music and fiddlers. The entertainment will be available on three stages located on Fremont Street and starts at 4 p.m. on March 17 and 19 and at 6 p.m. on March 18.