The High Country toasts the Irish

Article Published: Mar. 15, 2012 | Modified: Mar. 18, 2012
The High Country toasts the Irish

St. Patrick’s Day may not be a legal U.S. holiday, but the widespread display of green – on clothing and even in beer – indicates that March 17 is given quite the consideration. Many Americans make it a point to don a shamrock, down a pint and do a jig on the day that honors Irish culture and heritage.

Ireland is thousands of miles away, but the party is just a few miles down the road. There’s plenty of folk music, green beer and corned beef and cabbage to go around in the High Country on St. Patrick’s Day. Here’s a sample.

Banner Elk

By day, Sorrento’s Italian Bistro is serving up Irish flavor with a corned beef and cabbage special. By night, the restaurant’s Barra club will party it up with specials on black and tans and Irish car bombs. Starting at 9 p.m., the Sushi Club will also host a party with drink specials, late night sushi, karaoke and a live DJ. Sorrento’s is located at 140 Azalea Circle in the Village Shops Downtown. For more information, visit or call (828) 898-5214.

Blowing Rock

Canyons of the Blue Ridge paints it green with live music Saturday from the band, Smokey Breeze. The show starts at 9 p.m., and, as luck would have it, there’s no cover. Canyons is located at 8960 Valley Blvd. For more information, call (828) 295-7661 or visit

Six Pence Pub was created with England in mind, but it has no problem throwing a bash for the country next door. With the luck o’ the Irish and the purchase of an Irish car bomb, those celebrating may win a T-shirt, shot glass, beer mug, jacket or any number of prizes made available throughout the day. Corned beef and cabbage will be on the menu, as will $3 Foothills Irish Red. An in-house band will provide entertainment between 7 and 10 p.m. Hours are 11:30 a.m. to 2 a.m. Six Pence is located at 1121 Main St. For more information, call (828) 295-3155.


Restaurant and bar Beef O’ Brady’s was built on an Irish pub theme, so when St. Patrick’s day comes around, it gets back to its roots with an extraordinary party. Beef’s is going all out with activities for kids and adults. Until dark, the crowd can enjoy hamburgers and hotdogs in the parking lot, along with a kid’s inflatable slide, cornhole tournament, face-painting and more. A kid cupcake-eating contest and a cabbage eating contest takes place around 2 p.m. Movie tickets, gift certificates and other freebies will be up for grabs throughout the day. Food and beer specials will also be available. Hours are 11 a.m. to 12 a.m. Beef O’ Bradys is located at 276 Watauga Village Dr., Suite 7. For more information, call (828) 265-8585.

Cafe Portofino welcomes St. Patty’s Day revelers 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.

Crossroads Pub & Neighborhood Grill invites folks to celebrate the luck o’ the Irish all day long with food and drink specials and Irish music. Corned beef with cabbage and new potatoes and horseradish sauce is available for $8.95. Drink specials include $1.50 green beer pints, $5 Irish car bombs, $4 Murphy’s Irish Stout and $3 Killian’s Irish Red pints. At 8 p.m., the Wizard’s Road Show hits the stage with a live DJ and karaoke. Crossroads is located at 125 Graduate Lane in Boone. For more information, call (828) 266-9190.

For music to the tune of Ireland, head to Galileo’s Bar and Cafe for traditional Irish, Celtic, folk and mountain music from the Mountain Laurels. The ladies five-piece returns for its third year of St. Patty’s Day performances at 8 p.m. The show doubles as the Mountain Laurels’ CD release party for their first album, “Highland Bloom.” The bash continues with folk rock band Bad Accents at 11 p.m. Come early and enjoy a meal of Guinness beef stew, corned beef, Irish soda bread and Bailey’s Irish Crème Chocolate Mousse. 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.

Get outside and go green on St. Patrick’s Day with Greening Our Creeks. The Watauga Cooperative Extension workshop will include lunch, a native plant demonstration and plant giveaway. Participants will learn about local plants and receive tips on how to care for their stream or river. Registration is required and can be done by calling (828) 264-3061, or emailing Greening Our Creeks begins at 10:30 a.m. and will be held at the Watauga County Agricultural Conference Center, located at 252 Poplar Grove Road.

Irish music is the theme at this week’s Mountain Home Music. The St. Patrick’s Celebration will feature Blue Ridge Music Hall of Famer David Johnson, champion mandolin player Scott Freeman, Mary Greene, Nancy Schneeloch-Bingham, Jacquelyn Bartlett and Mountain Home Music founder Joe Shannon. The evening will highlight tunes and instruments of Irish origin. The show starts at 7 p.m. at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, located at 170 Councill St. Tickets are $15 in advance or $18 at the door. Student tickets are $10, and a child’s ticket is $5. Tickets may be purchased at the Mast General Store, Fred’s Mercantile, Rydell Music Center and Pandora’s Mailbox and the Dulcimer Shop at the Martin House. For more information, visit or call (828) 964-3392.

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 a very Irish family 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. Murphy’s is located at 747 W. King St. For more information, call (828) 264-5117.

Tired of getting pinched for not wearing green on St. Patty’s Day? Take care of the problem with a permanent green fixture at Speakeasy Tattoo. For the fourth year, the shop is offering free shamrock tattoos to anyone making a $10 donation to “Tattoos for Schools.” Last year, the fundraiser brought in more than $5,000 to support elementary school art teachers in Watauga County. There will be several shamrock tattoos from which to choose. The free ink, about the size of a quarter, will be available from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. No appointment is necessary, and the tattoos will be done first come, first serve. Speakeasy Tattoo is located at 728 W. King St. For more information, call (828) 355-9595.

Post-tat, head to Boone Saloon for the Tattoos for Schools after party, where a portion of the proceeds will also go to local art teachers. The lineup features local talent The Drawstrings and Captain Stabb Tuggo, a true sideshow performer. Greensboro-based psychobilly band The Tremors are headlining. Doors open at 9 p.m. The cover is $5, but a $10 donation is suggested. Boone Saloon is located at 489 W. King St. For more information, visit or call (828) 264-1811.

Local vocal DJ Jerry Parker hosts the party at the Town Tavern Saturday night. St. Patrick’s Day freebies will be given out, and drink specials will be available throughout the evening. There is no cover charge. The Town Tavern is located at 208-A Faculty St. For more information, call (828) 264-2226.

West Jefferson

Several restaurants and bars are teaming up for the St. Patrick’s Day Pub Crawl from 6 to 10 p.m. in downtown West Jefferson. Enjoy an evening of friends, food and fun at Frasers Restaurant and Pub, Brickstone Pizza and Pasta and Black Jack’s Pub and Grill. Tickets to the event include a souvenir pint glass, $2 domestic draft pints, $3 house wine, a scavenger hunt contest, discounts at local shops, hotels and Bubba’s Taxi, half-priced appetizers, loaded fries at Frasers, knot sliders at Brickstone and the nacho bar at Black Jack’s. Tickets are $10 in advance and $15 at participating restaurants. For more information, visit or call (336) 246-5222.

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