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Photo - Doug Jorgensen

All eyes will be smiling at the City of Dublin’s 36th Annual St. Patrick’s Day Celebration, which includes a two-day festival, a 5K Shamrock Fun Run and Walk, St. Patrick’s Day parade, pancake breakfast, and gala dinner dance.

The weekend’s festivities will begin on Friday, March 15, with dinner and dancing to live music at the Dublin Sister City Association’s annual Green and White Gala at the Shannon Community Center (11600 Shannon Avenue). A no-host “Irish Happy Hour” bar opens at 6:00 p.m., followed by dinner buffet at 7:00 p.m. and dancing until 11:30 p.m. Tickets are $80 per person and may be purchased online at https://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/3817964 or by calling (800) 838-3006, extension 1. For event information, please call (925) 858-8890.

On Saturday, March 16, revelers can start their morning beginning at 7:00 a.m. with a big stack of hot “green” pancakes served fresh off the griddle at the Annual Firefighter’s Pancake Breakfast at Fire Station #16 (7494 Donohue Drive). Breakfast also includes eggs, sausage, juice, and coffee. Tickets may be purchased at the door for $5 per person. All proceeds benefit the Alameda County Firefighters Association-Local 55 Charity Fund, which supports local non-profit and community-based organizations.

Also on Saturday, March 16, the Dublin Lions Club will present the 36th Annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade, starting at 9:30 a.m. The parade kicks off at Dublin Boulevard and Amador Plaza Road, traveling east on Dublin Boulevard, north on Village Parkway, and west on Amador Valley Boulevard, ending near the Dublin Senior Center. Guests are encouraged to bring their own chairs and blankets to watch from along the parade route. The parade features more than 80 entries including festive marching bands and floats; Irish bagpipes; Irish Wolfhound and Irish Setter rescue groups; and equestrian riders.

The 36th Annual St. Patrick’s Day Festival takes place on Saturday and Sunday, March 16 and 17, 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., at the Dublin Civic Center (100 Civic Plaza). Highlights include three stages of authentic Irish music and dance; an Irish Marketplace; an Irish Tea Cottage; plenty of delicious Irish food and beverages; arts and crafts vendors; and a carnival.

Entertainment at the Festival includes two stages featuring a wide variety of Celtic music, from high-energy Celtic rock and traditional Irish Pub music to iconic bagpipes. Performing on the Main Stage both days, Tempest will infuse Folk Rock and Irish Reels for a high-energy performance. Also appearing on the Main Stage during the Festival will be The LeperKhanz, The Gallowglasses, Fast & Vengefully, and Cali Celtic. On the Pub Stage are Cali Celtic, Golden Bough, The LeperKhanz, Avalon Rising, and the Peter Daldry Band. In the Irish Tea Cottage, visitors can enjoy the sounds of the Dublin Irish Jam Band, The Lifted Spirits, Golden Bough, and the Peter Daldry Band. The Irish Dance Stage showcases the McGrath Irish Dancers on Saturday and the McBride School of Irish Dance on Sunday. Bagpiper Jeff Campbell performs throughout the festival grounds.

The Irish Marketplace features vendors specializing in unique Celtic artwork; authentic Irish kilts and textiles; beautiful Celtic jewelry; delectable Iris

Visitors craving a wee bit of Ireland can step inside the cozy Irish Tea Cottage to enjoy lively music along with tasty tea cookies, shortbread, scones, and a steaming cup of authentic Irish tea served in genuine china cups.

The Celtic Food Court features traditional Irish favorites, such as fish and chips; bangers and mash; and boxty (Irish potato pancakes), along with the Irish-American St. Patrick’s Day favorite, corned beef and cabbage. Unique Irish-inspired specialties include corned beef sliders, Guinness-marinated tri-tip, and Irish egg rolls. Authentic Guinness, Harp, and Smithwick’s beer is served on tap, and featured desserts include green shamrock-shaped funnel cakes and “lucky lime” shave ice. Traditional festival foods and international choices will also be available.

The Carnival will offer rides and attractions for guests of all ages. On Saturday, the Carnival will be open until 7:00 p.m., two hours after the closing of the Festival.

On St. Patrick’s Day, Sunday, March 17, the City of Dublin will host the 21st Annual Shamrock 5K Fun Run and Walk. The race begins at 8:30 a.m. along Dublin Boulevard near the Civic Center, and winds its way through town, finishing at the Festival with live music, awards, and giveaways for participants. The top three finishers in each division will win a medallion and gift certificate from race sponsor Dick’s Sporting Goods. Register online at www.runsignup.com/Race/CA/Dublin/DublinShamrockRun?remMeAttempt. For race information, please call (925) 556-4500.

Festival admission is free, and free parking will also be available in designated lots and on nearby streets. A free festival shuttle will be provided to transport guests from the Carl Zeiss Meditec, Inc. parking lot (5160 Hacienda Dr.) directly to the Festival entry. Visitors can also ride BART to either the East or West Dublin BART Stations and connect for free directly to the Festival by taking Wheels Rapid 30R bus. To ride for free, guests must tell the driver they are headed to the Festival. Wheels is also offering half-priced rides within Dublin via Lyft, Uber, and DeSoto cabs. Visit www.WheelsBus.com/godublin for more information. Free and secure bike parking will also be available onsite at the bike valet.

All festivities will be held rain or shine. Call (925) 556-4500 or visit www.DublinStPats.com for more information.