14th Annual St. Patrick’s Day Festival in Korea

    Saturday, March 15th, 2014, seemed like the first day of Spring in South Korea. It also marked the 14th Annual St. Patrick’s Day Festival, hosted by the Irish Association of Korea. This year’s event took place just outside of exit 1 at Sindorim Station. Koreans and expats alike had opportunities to experience many different aspects of Irish culture. The stage in the center of D-cube City Plaza was the main attraction, with various bands and dance troupes from all over Asia. The deli, just inside the entrance of D-Cube City, had Irish stew and bangers & mash available for visitors to taste Irish cuisine. There was also a face painting tent and information about many Irish culture-based organizations, such as the Gaelic Football Club and a study abroad in Ireland program.

    The festival kicked off at noon, and as the day progressed, the sea of green attendees grew exponentially. The event was graced with the presence of the newly appointed Ambassador of Ireland to Korea, Aingeal O’Donoghue. Since this was her first St. Patrick’s Day in Korea, she was very excited to spread the Irish culture and promote the continued cooperation between Korea and Ireland. She also announced that this would be the first year that N Seoul Tower would be lit up green in honor of the holiday.

    By the late afternoon, around the time many people were a few pints in, a crowd had gathered in front of the stage to dance.  Everyone was in a great mood as they tried their own version of the Irish jig to the traditional music. One of the most enjoyable things of the afternoon was running into old friends and meeting new ones. Everyone in attendance was happy to talk and share the spirit of the festival.

    Andrew Kilbride from the Irish Association had this to say about the event: “We [the Irish Association] feel the event was a massive success. We would like to thank everyone for coming and getting involved. It’s fantastic to see the expat and Korean communities come together and celebrate as one. I hope we can grow this festival even more next year”.

    It was a great day full of family, friends and fun out in the sun. If you missed this year’s event, you’ll just have to wait until next year.

For more information about the Irish Association of Korea, please visit their website here!