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There is an estimated 3 million Irish passport holders – many of these will be second or third-generation Irish people, the total number in the diaspora, is much larger and difficult to estimate.
Since 1970, between 9 and 10 million people born in Ireland, have emigrated across the globe. From 1830 to 1914, almost 5 million went to the United States alone and by the 21st century, an estimated 80 million people worldwide claimed some Irish descent, with 36 million Americans claiming Irish as their primary ethnicity.
The very first St. Patrick’s Day was not in Ireland, but held in Boston in 1737, now around 850, 000 people attend the St. Patrick’s Day parade in Boston, each year.
St. Patrick’s Day isn’t just a one day holiday, the run-up to St. Patrick’s Day is an excuse for a four-day festival embracing things like Celtic dancing (traditional dances) and cooking up a traditional dish of corned beef and cabbage –
With a variety of celebrations held, from dying the Chicago River green (using 40 pounds of non-toxic vegetable dye) to wearing green garments and drinking a beer or two down the local, it becomes another spending holiday for many celebrants. The average person will spend an estimated $35.27 on green clothing, home décor and refreshments alone, adding up to an average of 4.6 billion throughout the day.
Read Sparkstone’s infographic here to find out more St. Patrick’s Day facts…