St. Patrick's Day Activities for the Sober Crowd in Metro Phoenix

Convert your druids at the St. Patrick’s Day Parade and Faire.
Convert your druids at the St. Patrick’s Day Parade and Faire. Courtesy of St. Patrick's Day Parade and Faire

click to enlarge Convert your druids at the St. Patrick’s Day Parade and Faire. - COURTESY OF ST. PATRICK'S DAY PARADE AND FAIRE
Convert your druids at the St. Patrick’s Day Parade and Faire.
Courtesy of St. Patrick's Day Parade and Faire

As unfair as it may seem, some holidays aren't for everyone. It seems like every major celebration on the calendar appeals to a particular demographic, and the people who fall outside that club get to spend the whole day feeling left out. Such is the case with a certain day in March.

The notion of St. Patrick's Day as a day of celebration exclusively for the Irish Catholic crowd eroded away a long time ago. But as inclusive as a day like this can be, those of us who put down the booze or never even picked it up to begin with often end up feeling like singles on Valentine's Day.

Still, this is supposed to be a celebration, no matter who you are. So if you're one of those proud few who will be giving the green beer a hard pass, don't resign yourself to another night in. There are plenty of St. Patty's Day activities all through March for the club soda contingent. You just have to know where to look.

Fortunately, we've already looked for you.

St. Patty's Day Family Shenanigans
No matter what age bracket you might check off on the census, chances are you'll have a blast at Dave & Buster's no matter what day it happens to be. It's an entertainment destination that has broken down the concept of fun to a science, but this event should take that to a whole new level.

The word "shenanigans" is thrown around pretty frivolously at times, but in this case, it seems appropriate. As far as the little ones are concerned, this might be the perfect way to kick off the weekend. The extensive lineup of arcade classics will make the kids feel like it's their lucky day, and with the variety of available packages, the whole family can expect one awesome Saturday morning no matter what your budget might be.

St. Patty's Day Family Shenanigans takes place at the Glendale Dave & Buster's on Saturday, March 16, from 9 a.m.  to 11 p.m. Ticket packages range from $6.50 to $33.41 and can be purchased through Eventbrite.

MonkeyFest — St. Patty's Day Party
Now in its second year, Chandler's MonkeyFest stretches all the St. Patty's Day fun across three crazy days. Although there are plenty of fun and games for the lil' monkeys, the big monkeys who are sticking with the soft drinks can enjoy some of the best local food trucks in town. Plus, those alcohol-free adults can test their might with a game of cornhole, and a free game of cornhole at that. All proceeds earned from the event go to the Chandler Chamber of Commerce, so attendees can have a blast while supporting the city at the same time.

The Second Annual MonkeyFest will take place at Chandler's Ginger Monkey Tavern on March 16 and 17. Tickets are $10 for general admission and $50 for VIP, and can be purchased at

2019 Luck of the Irish 3.17
Now in its third year, the Luck of the Irish 3.17 Miles (five kilometers) can be just the thing for anyone who lives the clean life and wants to keep themselves on the move. If the idea of a marathon fills you with a sense of dread, you might want to pump the brakes. This isn't your typical "race." What we have here is a "virtual race," a totally flexible endeavor in which participants can walk their five kilometers at their own pace and at whatever pace they like. Want to walk along the sidewalk? Want to run through the park? It's all up to you. Now that's a marathon we can all get into.

The 2019 Luck of the Irish 3.17 will occur from March 17 through March 31. Registration is $20 and can be purchased at Eventbrite. There is no fixed location for this event; participants can get to steppin' wherever they choose.

Pound and Pour
Don't let the name mislead you. Although there are Bloody Marys and mimosas are available at the end of the event for anyone who wants to partake, the main focus of this one is fitness. Bring along your yoga mat and some water for 45 minutes of physicality. It's just the thing the beer-free boys and girls need to get their blood pumping and their head clear, so head to Culinary Dropout on March 16 and get your sweat on. St. Patrick's Day Pound and Pour takes place at Culinary Dropout on Saturday, March 16 at 8:30 am. Tickets are $10 and can be purchased at Eventbrite

St. Patrick's Day Parade and Faire
The true meaning of St. Patrick's Day is hardly ever at the forefront of its celebrations. It has, through no fault of its own, slipped into the same territory that Cinco de Mayo often finds itself in. It's another one of those holidays whose intended purpose became twisted into an excuse to throw back several pints of Guinness and the occasional Irish Car Bomb. The true history is more than just a collection of trivial footnotes, and the Irish Cultural Center's St. Patrick's Day festivities are just the thing for you to get back to the holiday's roots while also celebrating all things Irish.

Festival-goers can expect a day packed with traditional Irish music, dance, and cuisine, complete with vendors peddling Irish crafts and merchandise. On top of all that, the Irish Cultural Center will be hosting an actual Irish Tea Ceremony, which should prove to be the perfect way to honor the holiday for anyone who plans to pass on the pints.

The St. Patrick’s Day Parade and Faire takes place at the Irish Cultural Center on Saturday, March 16, at 10 a.m. Admission is $12 for adults, $10 for both seniors age 55 and over and members of the military. Children under 12 get in free. The parade begins at the corner of Third and Sheridan streets downtown. Tickets for the tea ceremony are available for an additional $15.  
KEEP PHOENIX NEW TIMES FREE... Since we started Phoenix New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Phoenix, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.