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Here’s to St. Patrick!

Article Published: Mar. 13, 2013 | Modified: Mar. 18, 2013
Here’s to St. Patrick!

From celebrating the arrival of Christianity in Ireland, to an official feast day, to a Catholic dubbing of a saint, to bar hopping and pints of green beer, March 17’s St. Patrick’s Day has been celebrated in a myriad of ways.

In Watauga County, the day can cheered on with corned beef, cabbage, shamrock tattoos, Guinness, Irish whiskey and, of course, music. Here are some highlights:


Wear lifelong luck by being inked with a quarter-size clover or a green apple at Speakeasy Tattoo Company. For the tattoo, the shop asks for a $10 dollar donation, which profits its fifth annual Tattoos for Schools fundraiser.

Every St. Patrick’s Day, Speakeasy sends all of donations to High Country elementary school art teachers for use of supplies – pencils, paper, crayons and even a pottery wheel and kiln. Over the past four years, Speakeasy has raised $10,000 and community support for art education. The St. Patty’s tattoos take about 10 minutes to complete, so the shop can guarantee tattoos to the first 200 people.

Another way to donate to the art programs through Speakeasy is to pledge a certain amount per tattoo, starting at 10 cents per tattoo, completed on March 17. Speakeasy is offering kid-friendly tattoos, as well, for $1. Tattooing starts at 7 a.m. and usually lasts until 10 p.m. No appointment is necessary, but employees ask that you come early, as there is always a line and a packed house. Speakeasy Tattoo is located at 728 W. King St. in downtown Boone For more information, visit, or call (828) 355-9595.

Sporting the fresh ink, head to Boone Saloon for the after-party. A variety show will feature local acts and the world-famous sword-swallowing act by Captain Stab-tuggo and Maybelle. The duo has appeared on “America’s Got Talent,” and Stab-tuggo shattered the world record for heaviest weighted sword swallow with 84.2 pounds on Ripley’s Believe It or Not World Sword Swallower’s Day. The show starts at 10 p.m., and cover is $5. Boone Saloon is located at 489 W. King St. For more information, visit or call (828) 264-1811.

On Saturday, March 16, the Mountain Laurels will play their rootsy yet hypnotizing mix of original and cover Celtic music at Galileo’s Bar and Café. “At the core of the founding members is the inspiration of this area and this terrain and the inspiration of the mountains,” said Elaine Gray, the band’s guitarist.

Starting at 8 p.m., the five-piece all-female band will play the “joyful music and sorrowful music,” which is typical of ancestral Celtic music, and hopes to give listeners “a few moments of abandonment,” Gray said.

Made of Suede, the band “relentless as a freight train,” will perform on Sunday, March 17 at 10 p.m.
Galileo’s is located at 1087 W. King St. Hours are 11 a.m. to 2 a.m. For more information, call (828) 865-9591, or visit

A guest DJ will lead St. Patrick’s Day weekend at Paolucci’s Italian Bar and Grill. Dinner will be served until 10 p.m. Starting at 10 p.m. on Saturday and 8 p.m. on Sunday, the bar will offer corned-beef sliders, Irish specialty drinks and green beer. Paolucci’s Italian Bar and Grill is located at 783 W. King St. in downtown Boone. For more information, call (828) 268-7525 or visit

Spend the evening with a variety of Irish music at Mountain Home Music on March 16. The St. Patrick’s Celebration will feature Blue Ridge Music Hall of Fame fiddler David Johnson, fiddler and champion mandolin player Scott Freeman, the “sweet clarity” of guitarist and singer Dori Freeman, professional pianist and harpist Michael Willis and Joe Shannon on harmonica and concertina.
The evening will highlight tunes and instruments of Irish origin. The show starts at 7:30 p.m. at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, located at 170 Councill St. in Boone. Tickets are $15 in advance or $18 at the door, and student tickets are $10. Tickets may be purchased at the Mast General Store, Fred’s Mercantile, Rydell Music Center, Pandora’s Mailbox and Meadowbrook Inn. For more information, visit, or call (828) 964-3392.

BanDam hosts the party at the Town Tavern on Sunday, March 17, at 9 p.m. St. Patrick’s Day freebies will be given out, Bud Light St. Patty’s Day bottles and green draft beer will be available throughout the evening. There is no cover charge, so “come get you some.” The restaurant opens at noon and will be serving its regular Sunday specials. The Town Tavern is located at 208-A Faculty St. in Boone For more information, call (828) 264-2226, or visit

Café Portofino welcomes St. Patty’s Day merrymakers with food and drink specials. There will be free giveaways throughout the day and night. Hours are 11:30 a.m. to 2 a.m. Cafe Portofino is located at 970 Rivers St. For more information, call (828) 264-7772.

Rubber Checks, a bluesy rock ’n’ roll band, will play at Black Cat Burrito on March 15. Black Cat will be serving green beer throughout the weekend. There is no cover, and doors open at 10 p.m. Only ages 18 and older will be admitted. Black Cat Burrito is located at 127 N. Depot St. in downtown Boone. For more information, call Black Cat at (828) 263-9511 or visit

Char will be offering Irish varieties, like Shepherd’s Pie, corned beef and cabbage, boxty and Reubens. Drink specials include $4 Guinness, a dollar off all Irish whiskeys and $5 Irish Car Bomb drinks. Green beer will be available throughout the weekend, and a guest D.J. will lead the dancing on Sunday night. Char is located at 179 Howard St. in Boone. To view the menu, visit For more information, call (828) 266-2179.

The Lost Ridge Band is making its annual St. Patty’s Day appearance at Murphy’s Restaurant and Pub. Members Pete and Phil Washburn come from commanding Irish ancestry and know how to rock the holiday. The free show has filled Murphy’s to capacity in years past, so come early to get a seat. The band will play from 6 to 9 p.m. From 10:30 until close at 2 a.m., Big Daddy Love will perform. Murphy’s will offer Irish drinks all weekend. Murphy’s is located at 747 W. King St. For more information, call (828) 264-5117 or visit

Blowing Rock

The 2013 Luck o’ the Lassie event invites guests to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day at The Best Cellar at the Inn at Ragged Gardens, while supporting Girls on the Run of the High Country. The event will feature a live auction with packaged items donated from High Country community members, heavy hors d’oeuvres provided by the Best Cellar, wine tasting and more. The festivities last from 6:30 to 9 p.m., and valet parking is provided.

Tickets start at $50 each, $75 for two and VIP tickets by request. For ticket sales, interest in being an event sponsor or to donate an auction item, call Mary Sheryl Horine at (828) 262-7557, or email ( For more information, visit

Best Cellar at the Inn at Ragged Gardens is located at 203 Sunset Drive in Blowing Rock. For more information, call (828) 295-3466, or visit

Canyons of the Blue Ridge will feature its Sunday Jazz Brunch with performer Todd Wright on March 17, from 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Canyons is located at 8960 Valley Blvd. in Blowing Rock. For more information, call (828) 295-7661, or visit

By purchasing an Irish Car Bomb drink at Six Pence Pub, those celebrating have a chance to win one of many door prizes, such as a shot glass, beer mug or gift certificate. Corned beef and cabbage will be on the menu, with Guinness ice cream floats for dessert. Hours are 11 a.m. to 2 a.m. Six Pence is located at 1121 Main St. For more information, call (828) 295-3155 or visit

Banner Elk

On March 16, Sorrento’s Italian Bistro will be serving 25-cent green draft beer, $5 black-and-tans and specials on Irish Car Bombs. “Come get your Irish on” with a dinner of corned beef and cabbage. Later in the evening, the Sushi Club will host a live DJ. Sorrento’s opens at 5 p.m. and is located at 140 Azalea Circle in the Village Shops Downtown. For more information, visit, or call (828) 898-5214.

Valle Crucis

Elegantly celebrate a rousing Irish menu at The Mast Farm Inn. Dinner will be based on gourmet interpretations of traditional Irish fare, alongside the inn’s regular a la carte menu.

On Thursday, March 14; Friday, March 15; and Saturday, March 16, the restaurant offers a four-course meal with main course choices of Colorado lamb chops, honey-roasted root vegetables, bacon and kale colcannon (a traditional Irish dish of creamy mashed potatoes mixed with kale), or oatmeal porter jus.

The weekend will also feature a collection of North Carolina craft beers, with a tip of the hat to the Irish accent in the North Carolina craft beer spirit. Lodging packages are available. See the menu, beverages, pricing and make reservations at To reserve seating, call (828) 963-5857.

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