St. Patrick’s Day is one of the most festive holidays in the D.C. area. Here are the best places to park the whole family when the city turns Irish for a day!

st patsdayparadefeet Family Friendly St. Patricks Day Events In DC

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Washington, D.C. Saint Patrick’s Day Parade
Constitution Ave
Washington, DC 20008
(202) 670-0317

Date: March 11, 2012
Time: 12 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.

This is the nation’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade. Floats represent Irish-American groups, pipe and marching bands, police and fire departments, and the military. The parade route will travel down Constitution Avenue between 7th and 17th streets with parade parties sponsored by local Irish pubs featuring Irish dancers and musicians.

Related: Best Kid-Friendly Attractions In The DC Area

St. Patrick’s Day 8K Race
1201 Pennsylvania Ave. Northwest
Washington, DC 20007
(301) 871-0400

Price: $30 adults
Date: March 11, 2012
Time: 9 a.m 

This festive race has been around for 24 years and marks the beginning of the running season. The adult’s race will start and end at Freedom Plaza, but this is a perfect opportunity for children to begin their racing careers with a 1K fun run following the adult 8K. Live entertainment includes bagpipers throughout the race route. Bagels, cookies and fruits are
provided for runners.

stpatsdaykidwithhat Family Friendly St. Patricks Day Events In DC

Photo Credit: ThinkStock

Manassas Saint Patrick’s Day Parade
Prescott Avenue and Center Street
Manassas, VA 20110

Date: March 17, 2012
Time: 11a.m. to 12 p.m.

This is the 13th year for this awesome parade, which start and end in Old Town Manassas. Have fun watching appearances form Northern Virginia Firefighter’s Emerald Society Pipe and Drum. Experience the Celtic culture by watching the Irish dancer and listening to authentic Irish music. Join the after party celebration along the parade route. Local pubs and restaurants will keep the party going with food and drink specials. Children will be entertained with moon bounces and other fun activities.

Gaithersburg Saint Patrick’s Day Parade
I-370 and Washingtonian Blvd
Gaithersburg, MD 20878
(301) 208-8833

Date: March 17, 2012
Date: 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.

Skip the D.C. trek and traffic and celebrate at the St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Gaithersburg. The Harp and Shamrock, and the City of Gaithersburg have joined together to host this event for the past 12 years. Marching Celtic dancers and bag pipe bands will be the highlight of the parade. The celebration will continue with live music at the Washingtonian Center immediately following the parade.

St. Patrick's Day Parade


National Shamrock Fest
RFK Stadium
2400 E. Capitol Street, Northeast
Washington, DC
(800) 468-2463

Price: $24.99 adults/$29 at the gate/free children 12 and younger
Date: March 24, 2012
Time: 12 p.m. to 9 p.m

National Shamrock Fest is this area’s largest street festival with 40 bands playing on seven stages. This family friendly event features carnival rides, crafts and games for kids. Expect roaming entertainers, food and drinks, and live music for everyone. National Shamrock Fest is held rain or shine.

Related: Washington, D.C.’s Best Stuff For Young Kids (5-8)

Carly Mannava is a freelance writer living in the Washington, D.C. Metro Area. Her work can be found on


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