Try Irish step dancing, popularized by “Riverdance” and taught at...

Try Irish step dancing, popularized by “Riverdance” and taught at schools across Long Island. Credit: Debbie Egan-Chin

From the New York City parade to local marches on Long Island, there is no shortage of ways to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day. But if you don’t want to brave the March winds, or are looking for a more unique experience, here are seven additional ways to celebrate the patron saint of Ireland:

Song and dance

The Irish American Society of Nassau, Suffolk and Queens in Mineola is going for brogue this month with a host of free and low-cost events, including concerts by Irish musicians and a St. Patrick’s Day party.

“We’re very welcoming to those not familiar with Irish culture and history,” said society board member Maureen O’Neill-Regan, of Floral Park, a first-generation Irish American. For the full schedule, visit

Play the bagpipes

The wail of bagpipes is “a unique sound,” said Robert Patrick Lynch, 68, of Glen Head, the bagpipe instructor at Kellenberg Memorial High School in Uniondale. Lynch offers private lessons in Irish piping ($50 for 45 minutes, and performs at parties ($350/half hour, The Kellenberg student band, The Firebird Pipers, will play the after-parade party at St. Patrick Church parish hall in Glen Cove on March 17. (Tickets $25,

Put on your (step) dancing shoes

The Irish dance craze popularized by “Riverdance” is taught at schools across Long Island. “We always welcome new students,” said Tricia Panasci of Inishfree School of Irish Dance, which offers classes in Massapequa, Mount Sinai, Bohemia and Sayville. Students ages four and up can take a free introductory class. (631-722-4939,

Learn to speak Irish

Irish is “a living language” with roughly 1.9 million people in Ireland having “some command” of their native tongue, said Jerry Kelly, 72, of Seaford. Join Kelly’s free classes in Irish Gaelic via Zoom at In-person classes are held at the Gerry Tobin Irish Language School, at the Ancient Order of Hibernians St. Patrick’s Division 2, 27 Locust Ave., Babylon (

Have a slice — of Irish soda bread

The sweet, crusty treat is sold at bakeries across Long Island. It comes plain, with caraway seeds or raisins, and costs $6.95 a loaf, at Dortoni in Levittown, Commack, East Norwich and Port Jefferson (

Shop locally for Irish imports

The island’s Irish import stores are brimming with just-arrived goods from across the Atlantic.

“We’re getting tons of Claddagh jewelry imported from Dublin,” said Ann Durkin of the Olde Towne Garden Irish & Victorian Gift Store, 1902 Wantagh Ave. in Wantagh. (516-826-2574,

See an Irish show or movie

The Suffolk theater in Riverhead will host an all-Irish weekend featuring The StepCrew step dancers (8 p.m., March 15, $59-$89); a screening of 1952’s John Wayne classic “The Quiet Man,” paired with Irish coffee and cheesecake (8 p.m., March 16, $25); and the traditional Irish musical group Dervish (7 p.m., March 17, $75–$89). Located at 118 E. Main St., Riverhead, 631-727-4343,

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