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Hartselle Enquirer

Turn St. Patrick's Day Into a Fun Family Day

By Staff
A Few Great Ways to Sweeten Up Any Occasion
Whether you're Irish or not, you've probably noticed that St. Patrick's Day is fast becoming one of the biggest party days of the year. From parades in major cities to get togethers for friends and family, the holiday can be filled with great food, bright colors, and fun activities. And did you know that the first St. Patrick's Day parade actually took place in New York City on March 17, 1762.
St. Patrick's Day officially celebrates the life of St. Patrick. The holiday has grown beyond Ireland and is celebrated in other locations such as Japan, Singapore and Russia. Ask any school-aged child and you'll find out the following about St. Patrick's Day.
Its official color: green, representing spring, Ireland and the shamrock; it's said to be good luck to wear green on the holiday.
Its official mascot: the leprechaun, an Irish fairy who can reveal a buried pot of gold.
Its official emblem: the shamrock.
The holiday has become one of food and fun for groups of all ages. And having a party has never been easier. To try a few of the ideas here, be sure you've got a good supply of green food coloring and stock up on green candies, such as M&M'S Colorworks, 21 vibrant colors that can be ordered individually, including two different colors of green. Before you know it, your party will be in place.
To create the perfect St. Patrick's Day drink, dye clear soft drinks such as ginger ale or lemon-lime soda by using green food coloring. For a more adult beverage, use the food coloring in beer or wine.
Make a fun St. Patrick's Day breakfast by tinting pancake or waffle batter green with
a few drops of food coloring; then bake them into green masterpieces.
Create a colorful party dessert with sugar cookies shaped like shamrocks and decorated with icing and green and white chocolate candies. Or make cupcakes and dye the batter or icing green with food coloring and use green and white chocolate candies to jazz them up some more.
Make your own hidden pot of gold by decorating cookies with a pot of gold theme using gold candies; wrap the cookies individually and tie with rainbow colored ribbons and send the kids on a treasure hunt to find them.
You can purchase all the supplies for these ideas at your local supermarket and party stores. M&M'S Colorworks may be purchased at www.colorworks.com or 1-888-COLOR-88 and at various specialty candy stores.