The 15 Best College St. Patrick’s Day Parties In The U.S.
Editor’s Note: This originally ran last year, but with at least a dozen college kids celebrating St. Patrick’s Day this weekend—a dozen is a fair estimate, right?—we thought it’d be fun to rerun one of our most popular lists ever.
Today is St. Patrick’s Day. On this day, or on prior days co-opted as St. Patrick’s Day, college students across this fine land will celebrate our drunkest of holidays with green beer, ridiculous bashes, and much day-drinking. We feel that it’s about fucking time these legendary parties were ranked. And we’re here, now, to do just that.
The list below is based on a few defining factors:
1. How nationally “famous” is your St. Patrick’s Day party? You may say that you and your bros get “totally wasted” with “perfectly nothing-to-be-ashamed-of chicks” every March 17, but we needed a little bit of other evidence—be it newspaper articles, emails from concerned deans, criminal documents—to corroborate your claims.
2. Are there ample pictures or video of a St. Patrick’s Day celebration? Did we find said picture or video “pretty sweet?”
3. Did your schools’ undergrads/alumni make your case well? Could we taste the Guinness as we read your emails? Could we hear the distant, echoing womp-womps of your day parties as we watched your “I’m Shmacked” videos? Sense memory here, people. When you’re washed up like us, it’s all you’ve got.
Alright, here we go.
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15. “Kegs and Eggs,” SUNY Albany
Your Take: None
Our Take: SUNY Albany kicks off our list with a bang. By which we mean a no-holds-barred riot.
In 2011, Albany paid host to its annual “Kegs and Eggs” celebration. This particular year, things got nasty. Cars were destroyed. Appliances were thrown out of second-floor windows. And, at the end of the day, policemen carried off 16 tons of debris.
Before the infamous incident, Albany was known for a fun, relatively non-controversial St. Patrick’s Day party. Now, it’s controversial enough to have the cops on high-alert. So it must be a big deal at the school, yes?
Yes. No. 15 worthy.
(Sidenote: That 2011 Gothamist post also contains an amazing moment of Internet foreshadowing. Its last paragraph reads: “SUNY Albany administrators also cancelled the annual ‘Fountain Day celebration,’ outraging many students who objected to the collective punishment. According to the Times Union, ‘a 41-year-old student chained himself to the fountain.’ That’s correct, a 41-year-old student chained himself to a fountain in Albany to protest a party being canceled.”
That student? SHOENICE HIMSELF. Seriously! Shoenice chained himself to a fountain to protest a party from being canceled. This is like finding an album Elvis recorded when he was 16.)
14. St. Patrick’s Day, University of Delaware
Your Take: None.
Our Take: Delaware is widely known for packing its city bars—Kildare’s especially—and off-campus houses to the max each St. Paddy’s Day. Last year, neighbors complained of the excessive noise and public intoxication at 10 a.m., and you look for that kind of record on lists like this.
Plus, look at that crowd!
13. St. Patrick’s Day Parade, Boston Schools
Your Take: “Most people in Boston go to the parade in Southie, get hammered, and try to act like Mark Wahlberg.” — Dan, Boston College
Our Take: There are no large school-specific St. Patrick’s Day celebrations in Boston (Massachusetts’ turn is coming a little bit later), but we’re dealing here with a city that boasts the most colleges per capita, as well as one of the country’s largest Irish populations—it’s a St. Paddy’s tinderbox.
A very public good time, in fact, has definitely been had by college kids over the last few years. So good that state representatives are now begging kids to not turn South Boston into Mardi Gras. “Thousands of visitors join us each year for this wonderful tradition and we welcome them,” state representative Nick Collins said, in letters to the presidents of Northeastern, Emerson, Boston College, Harvard, Wentworth, UMass Boston, Boston University and Suffolk. “We do not, however, welcome the Mardi Gras-like atmosphere that has accompanied them in recent years.”
We’ll see how that works out.
12. St. Patrick’s Day Week, Missouri University of Science and Technology
Your Take: “Ten-day long celebration. Two days off school. Used to hold Guinness world record for most alcohol consumed in a three day weekend before GBWR stopped keeping track of alcohol related records. Ten straight days of getting wasted and partying.” — Casey, Missouri S&T
Our Take: We’d be lying if we said we knew a ton about the Missouri University of Science and Technology before looking into their St. Patrick’s Day Party. But damnit if the Miners don’t seem to have a quality March 17. According to the school’s Wikipedia page, the event is the “predominant cultural event of the year”—an occasion featuring mass murder of rubber snakes, two days off school, and much green beer consumed.
And, according to reader Casey, the party did once hold the Guinness World Record for most alcohol consumed during a three-day period. This fact, unfortunately, is more unverifiable than your typical 2005 Wikipedia entry.
11. St. Patrick’s Day, University of Colorado
Your Take: [Four submission forms left blank with “CU-BOULDER!!!” written at the top.]
Our Take: Tales of incredible excess come to us second-hand from the High State—tales of massive, un-human quantities of green beer consumed, tales of bros peeing green-colored urine on the 18th, and, of course, tales of enormous, non-sanctioned apartment parties.
One apartment complex was the scene of a truly legendary party during last year’s holiday. As a tipster at the time said, “Some kid was actually at the party playing the bagpipes. Music was blasting, people were going nuts, spilling beer everywhere…. All students also got an email on St. Patrick’s day titled “Tonight,” saying this: ‘This St. Patrick’s Day: Root for the Buffs. Party safely. Look out for each other. Get home alive and well.
“Brought to you by the Dean of Students and the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs.’”
10. Parade Day, Binghamton University
Your Take: “Our party is extra special because almost all of campus gets fucked up starting at about 8 am. We then go downtown already trashed and start the pre-game parties for the big parade. By the time the parade comes, we’re all feeling saucy and ready to party our asses off some more.” — Michael, Binghamton
“As people pack in by the hundreds, the destruction begins. TVs, printers and kegs are tossed out windows liberally. Pianos are smashed, and fireworks are lit off. When the police finally do show up, it’s straight to the bars at State Street, where you remember you were there but don’t actually remember being there.” — Kevin, Binghamton
Our Take: Parade Day falls on the first Saturday of March, and is notable for featuring a strange scene: Thousands of people walking around the off-campus, with Irish coffees and brews in hand, at 8 a.m. By the end of the day, some reports say that 50,000 students and locals are packed into a party on State Street.
(Also, we’d be remiss not to say it: Multiple tipsters emailed us to say that the rugby team traditionally deserves special commendation for throwing an annual 10-keg party. They’re just making up for ruining a PERFECTLY GOOD football.)
9. Blarney Blowout, UMass Amherst
Your Take: “Blarney Blowout can be split into two parts. People hit the bars in the morning. Then from noon to 5 pm thousands of kids descend upon the townhouse courtyard for an epic rage. This year the state police along with riot personnel had to break it up. It is an all around awesome time.
We also have a dude playing fucking bagpipes. Irish as fuck.” — David, UMass
“It’s basically like the Tour De France for your liver.” — Brett, UMass
Our Take: That video above? A Dropkick Murphys song come to life.
And while, yeah, there are many, many dudes we see in the frame, keep this in mind—sometimes you’ve got to just break some shit sans chicks, you know? Get animalistic with it.