Spring greenery may still be a ways off, but you can dispel those winter blues by donning some green of your own and celebrating St. Patrick's Day at local Irish pubs. Those in the suburbs are rolling out a full weekend of live music, dancing, traditional eats and plenty of green beer. Here is a sampling:
Ballydoyle Irish Pub & Restaurant, 28 W. New York St., Aurora, (630) 844-0400, ballydoylepub.com: The bar opens at 8 a.m. Saturday for a St. Patrick's Day pre-party featuring performances from John O'Arthur, Funky Monks, McNulty Irish Dancers and The Sandcarvers for a $5 cover. Sunday's festivities have the same start time, with the McNulty Irish Dancers performing throughout the day along with John Arthur, Elevation and Flatfoot 56.
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Ballydoyle Irish Pub & Restaurant, 152 Stratford Drive, Bloomingdale, (630) 924-8800, ballydoylepub.com: Enjoy performances from Aidan O'Toole, Rock of Ages and C-Factor Saturday and Make'm Sing, Flatfoot 56 and The Sandcarvers Sunday.
Ballydoyle Irish Pub & Restaurant, 5157 Main St., Downers Grove, (630) 969-0600, ballydoylepub.com: The two-day bash features $5 Jameson cocktails and live music from Mighty Joe Beatty, New Element and Flatfoot 56 Saturday and Aidan O'Toole and Elevation Sunday. The McNulty Irish Dancers take the stage both days.
Claddagh Irish Pub, 1702 Commons Drive, Geneva, (630) 208-0337, claddaghirishpubs.com: Celebrate all weekend long with live music from Mulligan Stew at 8 p.m. Friday, a performance from Under the Willow at 8 p.m. Saturday and a full day of entertainment Sunday featuring Irish dancers and bagpipers, plus sets from Celtic Sounds at 11 a.m., Trillium at 3 p.m. and Train Company at 7 p.m. with a DJ between sets.
Durty Nellie's, 180 N. Smith St., Palatine, (847) 358-9150, durtynellies.com: The pub's 10th Anniversary St. Patrick's Day Celebration features two full days of entertainment. Bagpipers kick things off at 11:30 a.m. Saturday followed by performances by Irish dancers at 3:30 p.m., Irish band Red Rebel County at 7 p.m. and U2 tribute band Without U2 at 9:30 p.m. On Sunday, the St. Baldrick's Foundation will be shaving heads and taking donations to support childhood cancer research at 11 a.m., with more live music and dance performances starting at noon from Screw City Saints, Great Whiskey Project, Cornmeal Trio and Fonn Mor. Cover is $10 for Saturday and Sunday or $5 for just Sunday.
Finn McCool's Irish Sports Pub, 1941 E. Algonquin Road, Schaumburg, (847) 303-5100, finnmccoolschicago.com: Take advantage of food and drink specials including $3.50 22-ounce green Miller Lite drafts, $5 Jameson shots, $7.99 corned beef sandwiches and $10.99 corned beef dinner, plus live music from Your Villain My Hero Friday, CoverGurl and 7th Heaven Saturday and The Greatest Band Ever Sunday.
Five Roses Pub, 5509 Park Place, Rosemont, (847) 233-0077, www.fiverosespub: A Pour the Perfect Pint of Guinness contest kicks off the festivities at 5 p.m. Friday and the fun includes traditional Irish fare, beer and live music throughout the weekend. The pub will also host bagpipe performances Friday, Saturday and Sunday and presentations by Trinity Irish Dance Academy Saturday and Sunday afternoons. Matt Steadman Band, Chicago Reel, Fast Eddie, Barry Fagan and Garreth Woods are among the scheduled performers starting at 1 p.m. Saturday and noon Sunday.
Irish Mill Inn, 26592 North Highway 83, Mundelein, (847) 566-7044, www.irishmill.com: Enjoy music throughout the whole St. Patrick's Day weekend. Sunday's sounds start at 11 a.m. with Paddy Teglia and run through a 10:15 p.m. appearance by Whitey O'Day.
McGonigal's Pub, 105 S. Cook St., Barrington, (847) 277-7400, mcgonigalspub.com: The bar rolls out music and more for the third annual Barrington Celtic Fest, hosting performances from Gareth Woods at 9 p.m. Friday, Morgan Fingleton at 9 p.m. Saturday and Seamus O'Kane at 10 a.m. Sunday. There's no cover, but $10 helps support the American Cancer Society Relay For Life and grants access to a heated tent on Park Avenue serving up Irish food from McGonigal's, plus Guinness, Harp, Smithwick's and green Miller Lite. The tent also hosts performances starting at 4 p.m. Friday and 11 a.m. Saturday and Sunday. Acts include The Breakfast Club, Trash Martini and Rod Tuffcurls and the Bench Press.
McGruder's Irish Pub, 1350 E. Chicago Ave., Elgin, (847) 931-0130, mcgrudersirishpub.com: Enjoy a green beer or $3 pint of Guinness Saturday while listening to live music from The Belvederes from 2 to 5 p.m. and The Honkey Tonkers from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m.
Mickey Finn's Brewery, 412 N. Milwaukee Ave., Libertyville, (847) 362-6688, mickeyfinnsbrewery.com: The bar is holding a three-day bash before it moves to a new spot a block south, starting with a benefit for Misericordia at 5 p.m. Friday. Tickets are $40 and include dinner, a silent auction and live music from Finbar Finnegan and Betty Soul. The entertainment continues Saturday and Sunday with acoustic Irish sets in a heated beer tent and performances in the upstairs Amber Room by Napper Tandy at 9 p.m. Saturday and the Trinity Irish Dancers at 2 p.m. Sunday.
Quigley's Irish Pub, 43 E. Jefferson St., Naperville, (630) 428-4774, quigleysirishpub.com: Get your Irish music fix with performances from Cirrus Falcon from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. and Fonn Mor from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m. Saturday. Cover is $5 Sunday with New Element Band taking the stage at noon and Celtic Sounds playing at 8 p.m.