Guide to St. Patrick’s Day Family-Friendly Events & More in Columbia

Guide to St. Patrick’s Day Family-Friendly Event & More in Columbia | Columbia SC Moms Blog
Since I was a little kid, St. Patrick’s Day has always been one of my FAVORITE holidays. My (big fat) Irish family never misses an opportunity to party, and St. Patrick’s Day is no exception! Ireland may be my favorite place on earth, and it’s a country filled with the warmest, friendliest people I’ve ever encountered. So whether you’re a card-carrying Celtic ginger like myself or just Irish at heart, there are plenty of ways to celebrate the emerald isle in Columbia!

St. Patrick’s Day Celebratory Kick-Off Event

Don’t wait until March 16 to get in the festival spirit and welcome the arrival of spring. Head to Five Points this Sunday, March 3 from 3:30-7 p.m. for the official kick-off to St. Pat’s. Kids can help turn the Five Points fountain green! This event is FREE and includes:

  • Two Musical Performances – Tuatha Dea + EJ Campbell
  • Dance Performances by Connick School of Irish Dance
  • Special Appearances by Palmetto Pipes and Drums + the Kudzu Queens + the Ancient Order of Hibernians + more!
  • FREE t-shirts + green popcorn for kids from Gregory Electric
  • FREE Face Painting
  • FREE Balloon Twisting
  • Food + Beverage vendors

Don’t miss your chance to help us turn everyone’s favorite fountain green in celebration of all things green + Gaelic this spring!

Ceili (Irish Festive Gathering)

In honor of Irish Heritage Month, the Ancient Order of Hibernians will host its annual Ceili (an Irish Festive Gathering) on Saturday, March 9 at the American Legion Hall. Come kick off Irish Heritage Month 2019 with one of Columbia’s best Celtic Rock bands! There will be musical entertainment from one of their own Hibernian brothers, E J Campbell. E J will be performing traditional Irish music during the evening. Expect a sing-a-long or two! In addition, the Connick School of Irish Dance will be sharing their award-winning talents. All proceeds go directly to a wide variety of charities here in SC and in Ireland. Tickets can be purchased online for $10. Doors open at 6 p.m., and music starts at 7 p.m.

St. Patrick’s Day Parade

On Saturday, March 16 at 10 a.m. there will be magic in the air on Devine Street in Columbia, South Carolina where one of the nation’s largest St. Patrick’s Day Festivals will begin its second event of the day, the St. Pat’s Parade. The parade will assemble at Dreher High School and travel the Musical Mile down Devine Street into Five Points offering several blocks of public viewing. After entering Five Points, the parade will wind its way down Devine Street and up Saluda Avenue, returning to Harden Street at the Five Points Fountain and concluding near Food Lion.

Get to the Green Family (and Individual) Run

Kick-off the St. Pat’s in Five Points Festival on Saturday, March 16 with Columbia’s largest road race! Get to the Green features a 10K, 5K, and 1-Mile family fun run events in which participants chase rainbows in pursuit of a pot of gold. Race registration includes a t-shirt, post-race refreshments and entry into the St. Pat’s Festival. Participants will also receive a commemorative finisher’s medal! Register here.

Family Friendly St. Pat’s in 5 Points Playland

On Saturday, March 16, your little leprechauns are sure to think they’ve found the end of the rainbow on Saluda Avenue in this fun-filled area with balloon artists, kid- approved entertainment, rides, inflatable activity center, and a rock wall fit for a wee laddie. Entry, rides, and activities are all FREE to enjoy! However, the playland is in the festival, and entry into the festival is free to 12 and under. 

How to Catch a Leprechaun Storytime

You’ve been planning night and day, and finally you’ve created the perfect trap, but leprechauns are quick and sneakier than you may think. Will you ever catch one? Join Barnes & Noble on Saturday, March 16 at 11 a.m. for storytime and get a coupon from their Café for a grilled cheese sandwich with milk or juice for $4!    

Leprechauns and Limericks Event 

Join Barnes & Noble on Saturday, March 16 at 2 p.m. to get your official leprechaun name, become a master limerick writer, learn how to leprechaun-proof your home, and take home fun giveaways as they celebrate the release of Ronan Boyle and the Bridge of Riddles during this special event. 

Tartan Day South

Tartan Day South is one of my family’s all-time favorite events of the year. Think traditional Highland Games, bagpipers, live music, a British Isles car show, sheep herding, falconry, traditional Irish dancing, great food, and so much more! The festivities occur April 4-7 throughout the Midlands, with the main event on Saturday, April 6 at the Cayce Motor Speedway. Be sure to check their website for a detailed schedule and list of activities

“The 9th Annual Tartan Day South Celebration is a four-day event honoring Celtic heritage in our area. The festival is an array of different events at many different venues featuring unique sports, incredible music, great foods and interactive as well as interesting exhibitions.  The event is one of a kind in the Midlands. Nearly 72,500 patrons have attended Tartan Day South events since 2011, the growth has been phenomenal in just eight short years. Come join us in celebrating the contributions of Scottish and Irish Americans and the culture they love that brings such great fun for all ages right here at home!”

Know of an event not listed? Tell us about it!


  1. I just checked the St. Patty’s day site FAQ section and it says that the play area is going to be inside the festival. So I think that means entry is only free for 12 and under.


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