A man carrying a shamrock flag runs up West Broadway ahead of the annual St. Patrick's Day parade in South Boston, Massachusetts, on March 19, 2017. (Photo by Getty Images)
Boston lags behind Chicago in WalletHub's latest ranking of the top cities in which to celebrate St. Patrick's Day. Despite arguably being the birthplace of the Catholic feast that would eventually become the green-and-boozy American tradition, soaring pub prices and a low weather ranking keep Boston from claiming first place.
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"Believe it or not, the first ever St. Patrick’s Day parade didn’t take place in Ireland," says WalletHub. "Its roots are actually in the U.S., though some say Boston while others claim New York. Regardless, what began as a Catholic feast day and gained more recognition with a parade in the 18th Century is today one of America’s biggest cultural holidays. More than 32 million people in the U.S. claim Irish ancestry – that’s over six and a half times the population of Ireland."
WalletHub ranked 200 American cities using 17 key metrics grouped into four major categories. Each potential city was judged on St. Patrick's Day Traditions (50 points), Costs (30), Safety & Accessibility (10), and Weather (10).
But Boston wasn't the only city from Commonwealth to make the list. Both Worcester and Springfield made the Top 100, coming in at #47 and #80 respectively. Rounding out the Top 5 with Chicago and Boston are Philadelphia (#3), Buffalo (#4), and New York (#5).
This year, Americans are projected to spend $5.9 billion on the holiday, with an average of $40 spent per partier. While 152.5% more beer will be sold this March 17th than a normal day, St Patrick's day is only the fourth most boozy holiday - lagging behind New Year's Eve, Christmas, and Independence Day. In addition to beer, cabbage sees a 70% increase on the holiday with over 30% of American's planning to cook a special meal.