How Can I Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day Sober?

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If you got sober this year, this may be your first St. Patrick’s Day without pub crawling or heavy drinking. How can you celebrate St. Patrick’s Day without loads of green beer? You may have friends still hanging out at the bar and this holiday, like no other, is mostly about drinking, right? Not necessarily. There are plenty of ways you can celebrate St. Patrick’s Day without the green beer but with lots of green cheer. Be as happy as a leprechaun on that special Irish day without alcohol.

Do You Love Crafts and Decorations?

There are lots of ways to celebrate St. Patty’s Day, but let’s start with some decorations. Have some friends or family make decorations with you to start celebrating before the big day. That means having a little get-together in advance of the holiday to create shamrocks and leprechauns that you can put up to decorate. Take some green and white crêpe paper to make streamers and make sure you get plenty of hats and headbands to wear with your green attire.

What About Food?

Almost as famous–or infamous–as the green beer, traditional Irish food is served and eaten on St. Patrick’s Day. Just about everyone knows that corned beef and cabbage are a traditional Irish feast. Don’t limit yourself to just one dish when there are so many traditional Irish dishes you can feast on. How about some bangers and mash or shepherd’s pie? Whip up a hearty lamb’s stew and some cabbage to go along with all of your great Irish dishes.

How About a Little Irish Music?

To celebrate this holiday, food is good but music creates a lively atmosphere. There are loads of Irish bands out there that you can put on for some Irish musical festivity and if you’re going to have music, you may as well have dancing, too. Do you know why Irish dancers like Riverdance dance like they do? It’s because the pubs were so crowded, most of the movement was with their feet. Buy or rent a DVD of Irish dancing and take turns trying to mimic the moves (easier said than done). That’s some fancy footwork but the challenge will add fun to any party you have or St. Patty’s celebration.

Do You Know Any Irish Folklore?

Do you need a break from all that dancing and delicious Irish food? Read some poetry or tell some old Irish folk tales. Almost any group of people has at least one natural storyteller–maybe it’s you. Read excerpts from James Joyce or other Irish poets. Maybe even share some art made by the Irish. Since this is a sober celebration, children can be a part of it as well. This can be especially exciting for any children in your social circle whether they’re yours or someone else’s.

Are You Catholic?

If you happen to be Catholic on St. Patrick’s Day, there should be plenty of religious ceremonies you can attend as part of a church. You may even be able to organize a play about Irish folklore put on by the children or the adults. Maybe you want to take a prominent role as writer or director for a play based on old Irish lore.

Whether you put on a play or not, there are often a lot of activities associated with the Catholic church during St. Patty’s Day and they are sober activities. Being reminded of your “higher power” through the church can’t exactly hurt in keeping you on the straight and narrow path.

How About a New Version of the Pub Crawl?

In the past, perhaps you had gone from bar to bar, drinking heavily or even passing out because you got so intoxicated. Maybe you miss going from one place to another. How about organizing a sort of “pub crawl” in your neighborhood? Instead of alcohol, you could have a sort of potluck or arrange to have everyone serve up an Irish dish. You can do this in your neighborhood, although you will probably encounter some alcohol. Instead, gather together a group of sober friends and create your own sober celebration. Everyone can bring their favorite Irish dish, you can play some Irish music and celebrate with your fellow sober friends to support each other and not give in to those cravings. Not only will this keep you sober but a lot of other people as well.

St. Patrick’s Day and Fitness?

A lot of cities have a 5K and 10K run on St. Patrick’s Day. Join one, wear green, and meet a ton of (possibly sober) friends. Fitness is a great way to help manage stress and curb cravings so all the training you do for that run will help you before the holiday and help give you a way to resist those cravings. Better yet, invite family or friends to join in with you so it can become a real group celebration.

St. Patrick’s Day is a difficult holiday for people who are in recovery and trying to stay sober. It truly seems like the main holiday dedicated to drinking alcohol and everyone around you seems to be holding a cup. If that’s the case, you’re in the wrong place. Hold onto your sobriety by learning to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day in other ways. There are many Irish traditions besides drinking alcohol. You can use food, music, and dancing to get in the Irish spirit. You can decorate beforehand to make sure you have plenty of lucky shamrocks and pots of gold at your celebration. You could even run a race that day. So when you sit down this St. Patrick’s Day, have a bottle of water or soda and celebrate a sober St. Patrick’s Day. In fact, Sober St. Patrick’s Day can help you organize a recovery-friendly holiday. Here at Everlast Recovery Center, we know how hard it is to resist alcohol cravings, particularly during the holidays. We can help provide the tools you need to fight these cravings and commit to recovery in an inpatient setting. Our low staff-to-patient ratio feels like home, complete with home-cooked meals in our Riverside, California facility. Give us a chance to start you on a new life–you’ll wonder why you waited so long. Call us at 866-DETOX-25.

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