St. Patrick’s Day events in and around Asheville

MAD FOR TRAD: The Southern Highlanders will be playing traditional Irish music at White Horse Black Mountain on Saturday, March 19. Photo by R.L. Geyer

As we teeter between seasons, St. Patrick’s Day arrives just in time to banish the winter blues into a sea of green beer. There’s no need to search for the end of the rainbow if you’re looking to be Dublin’ your pleasure; Mountain Xpress has a road map so you can snake across the long St. Patrick’s Day weekend. Grab your Erin-go-bros, gather the Gaelic gals and get a group of gingers to rise up and meet the rowdy road (just don’t let the gingers get too much sun upon their faces).

Lex 18 offers the chance to say an Irish blessing for one of Asheville’s most prominent residents at its 1926 Irish Wake For Dr. E.W. Grove. The event features whiskey, a four-course meal and vaudevillian high jinks that promise to replicate a traditional Irish wake along with slapstick, drama, music and dance. Shows are on Thursday, March 17, and Friday, March 18, at 5:45 and 8:15 p.m. $49.

• If you’re in a charitable mood, there’s a St. Patrick’s Day Ceilidh (a traditional Irish folk music and storytelling gathering) at Appalachian School of Holistic Herbalism. There will be traditional Celtic music from The Magills, and proceeds from the event will help Scottish author Jude Lally return to her homeland to conduct research for the upcoming book The Ancient Mothers of Loch Lomond. Thursday, March 17, 7-10 p.m. $10.

Asheville on Bikes throws its Bike of the Irish event, if you’re looking to pedal before you party. On Sunday, March 20, at 2 p.m., the procession will leave City Hall for an 8-mile trek to Kolo Mountain Bike Park followed by festivities at Oskar Blues Brewery — including food trucks and demo bikes from local shops — until 6 p.m. This year marks the 10th anniversary of the ride. The event is free, and organizers are looking for volunteers.

Asheville on Bikes has its 10th annual Bike of the Irish ride and subsequent party on Sunday, March 20. Photo courtesy of Asheville on Bikes
CRUISE TO THE BREWS: Asheville on Bikes has its 10th annual Bike of the Irish ride and subsequent party on Sunday, March 20. Photo courtesy of Asheville on Bikes

Jack Of The Wood hosts a three-day St. Paddy Weekend Celebration. The festivities kick off Thursday, March 17, with a Celtic jam session in the afternoon, culminating with The Red Wellies bringing their twin fiddles and bouzouki onstage at 9 p.m. For some hair of the dog on Friday, March 18, a four-band lineup begins at 5 p.m., including Don Merkle and The Black Smith, the Jonny Monster Band, The Shady Rest and Carolina Ceili. The Tan and Sober Gentlemen, Durham-based performers of Irish standards with a dose of raucous energy, take the stage Saturday, March 19, at 8 p.m. Ticket prices vary from $7 to $10.

• Help christen Green Man Brewery’s new 20,000-square-foot Greenmansion, at 27 Buxton Ave., adjacent to its existing brewery, while celebrating an anniversary. On St. Patrick’s Day 2013, Green Man rolled out its first bottles and will be commemorating both occasions with special beer tappings all day, prizes for the best Green Man costume, food trucks and other festivities. The grand opening is Thursday, March 17, 2-10 p.m.

The Town Pump in Black Mountain has planned a spirit of a St. Patrick’s Day party with an Americana twist. Chris Jamison’s Ghost — featuring saxophone, lap steel and keyboards — will be playing a show Thursday, March 17, at 9 p.m. Admission is free.

• If you have wee ones, you can take them on an adventure to discover treasure at the end of the rainbow. Hands On!, the downtown Hendersonville children’s museum, is hosting an all-ages scavenger hunt. Your little leprechauns will have the chance to gather clues while searching for St. Patrick’s Day loot. The treasure hunt is on Thursday, March 17, and runs from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. $5/free for members.

Barley’s Taproom holds a St. Patrick’s Day party featuring the Boys of Buncombe. The group’s traditional Irish swing music will transport you to the Emerald Isle while you sip a pint of Guinness, or a brew from one of the nearly 30 other taps. Thursday, March 17, at 7:30 p.m. Free.

• Visit the White Horse Black Mountain for traditional Celtic and Appalachian music provided by The Southern Highlanders. The group incorporates a large number of instruments, including dulcimer, fiddle, pennywhistle, jaw harp and a plethora of percussion. Singer Aoife Clancy (daughter of Bobby Clancy of the legendary Clancy Brothers) is also on the bill, plus there will be Irish poetry, storytelling and a traditional Irish potato roll with prizes for the winners. The event is Saturday, March 19, at 6 p.m. $12 in advance/$15 at the door.

• If you fancy yourself a lord of the dance, head to DJ Kipper’s St. Party’s Day. The dance blowout takes place at Lexington Avenue Brewery with drink specials to fuel your thirst to boogie down. The music gets going Thursday, March 17, at 10 p.m. Admission is free.

• No need for luck: The St. Patrick’s Day Mega Party at Room Nine promises giveaways, beads, T-shirts and a green costume contest. Music will be provided by DJ Moto. Thursday, March 17, at 9 p.m. Free before 11 p.m./ $5 after.

• Southern Appalachian Brewery in Hendersonville hosts live Irish jams and pop from The Stipe Brothers, Dan Ruiz, Kent Rector and Jeff Hinkle. The beer starts to flow Thursday, March 17, at 4 p.m. with music from 7 to 9 p.m. Free.

• Wheel into Riverside Roller Rink in Burnsville wearing your best Irish costume for a chance to win prizes. The rollerskating festivities take place Saturday, March 19, 7-10 p.m. $5.

• MG Road gives revelers a magically delicious opportunity to enjoy a free bowl of Lucky Charms during its Pot of Gold Party featuring themed food and drink specials to sweeten up your holiday. The soiree is Thursday, March 17, at 7 p.m. Free.

For more St. Patrick’s Day events, go to Clubland, Calendar or


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About Dan Hesse
I grew up outside of Atlanta and moved to WNC in 2001 to attend Montreat College. After college, I worked at NewsRadio 570 WWNC as an anchor/reporter and covered Asheville City Council and the Buncombe County Board of Commissioners starting in 2004. During that time I also completed WCU's Master of Public Administration program. You can reach me at

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