I’ve never been to Ireland, but my friend visited once during St. Patrick’s Day and to her surprise it was a very quiet day. The only other people celebrating the holiday appeared to be Americans (we’re annoying wherever we go). I should have warned her. When I was living in Manchester and working in Liverpool (both cities have a big Irish population) St. Patrick’s Day could’ve been just any other day. Nobody cares, except Americans who are 0.010% Irish descent. Again…with the Americans. Anyway, like New Year’s Eve, it just seems like an excuse to get drunk. As if people needed a reason to do that. There doesn’t appear to be a St. Patrick’s Day museum, but there is one about leprechauns.
Open since March 2010, the National Leprechaun Museum (or Céad Míle Fáilte if you speak Irish) in Dublin is dedicated to all things Lucky Charms. I’m just kidding of course. Everybody knows leprechauns don’t come from cereal boxes, they’re like totally real. The Irish Times has referred to the museum as the “Louvre of leprechauns”…so there’s that. Visitors follow a guided tour through several rooms where the history of leprechaun folklore is explained. Many pop culture moments are referenced, including Walt Disney’s visit to Ireland which led to his 1959 film Darby O’Gill and the Little People, but not Jennifer Aniston’s star-making turn in the 1993 film Leprechaun. Then the museum turns into a magical place full of optical illusions; unusually large furniture and a wooden replica of the Giant’s Causeway. Another room is covered in umbrellas and falling rain, while the next room contains a rainbow, followed by a room with a crock of gold and a gigantic tree trunk. Other mythical creatures are also included in the tour, like fairies and their dust, but nothing about the Tooth Fairy, the Easter Bunny and Hanukkah Harry. Oh well.