There are many options in Las Vegas to toast on St. Patrick’s Day, including McMullan’s Irish Pub near Tropicana Avenue and Decatur Boulevard. They are expecting a packed house as the Irish holiday begins on Friday. Since 2002 the iconic pub has been creating loyal patrons in the Las Vegas valley.
“In America, they celebrate St. Patrick’s Day the most,” said Brian McMullan, the owner of McMullan’s. “All towns, all cities throughout this country are going to be celebrating today, some more than others, and it’s hugely important to the Irish people.”
McMullan says the Irish holiday is the busiest for pubs across the country, adding that the atmosphere of his pub is important to him, allowing patrons to feel at home.
“This is my pub, but I love it when people say it’s their pub,” McMullan said.
St. Patrick’s Day isn’t the only day that people, Irish or otherwise, flock to the pub.
“We have a lot of things going on; Irish sport, European sport,” said McMullan. “Tomorrow there’ll be a huge game, Ireland versus England rugby.”
Meanwhile, many St. Patrick’s Day parades and festivals include authentic Irish dance. One of the studios training those dancers is Scoil Rince Ni Riada near Charleston and Rainbow boulevards in Las Vegas.
At Scoil Rince Ni Riada, they prepare the next generation of Irish dancers, a trend that exploded in the mid-90s with the Riverdance phenomena.
“[Riverdance] is why many of us have schools today,” said Reid.
The studio owner says that dance is not only an art form, but a history lesson.
“We can actually trace Irish dancing back to the time of the druids,” said Tara Reid, owner of Scoil Rince Ni Riada. “Many of their religions rituals involve dancing.”
And historically, Irish dance may have been practical.
“St. Patrick also drove all the Snakes out of Ireland and people had to Irish dance over them in order to avoid [them],” said Reid.