Irish spirit prevails on St Patrick's Day in Penang

  • Community
  • Saturday, 19 Mar 2011

THE Penang Irish Association (PIA) celebrated the St Patrick’s Day in a grand style with an array of traditional culture, food and drinks.

True to its origins and in the spirit of the Irish culture, both Jonathan and Anne Choon came to the event dressed up as the mythical Leprechauns.

“Someone has to come to the party and dressed up as a Leprechaun or it would not be a true Irish festival,” said the Ireland-born Anne.

Anne, who is married to Penangite Jonathan Choon, admitted that she took the St Patrick’s celebration for granted when she was growing up in Ireland and now she misses it after leaving the country.

“Back in Ireland, there will be huge parades during the celebration until it became a natural thing for me then but now, I do miss the festive mood,” said Anne who goes back to her homeland once every two years.

However, despite missing out on the annual parades, both Jonathan and Anne usually spend their time whipping up traditional Irish fare at home like the creamy mashed potato.

“Through this we can still keep our Irishness, and it is also quality time well spent,” Anne added.

The real date for the St Patrick’s Day falls on March 17 but this did not deter the guests from soaking up the festive mood as they were greeted with traditional Irish music at the courtyard of the E & O Hotel’s grand ballroom which played host to the event last Friday.

Some were seen jiggling their way to the music performed by the live band while others just mingled.

In the ballroom, an Irish-themed buffet was served with dishes like the Atlantic salmon fillet-tomato dill butter sauce, black pepper sal-mon, Irish lamb stew and Bailey’s Irish coffee cheesecake to name a few.

As they were enjoying their Irish delights, a troupe of young dancers from the Irish Inspirational Dance Company in Singapore, performed a traditional dance to the delight of the crowd.

The event was graced by the Ireland’s Ambassador Declan Kelly.

The occasion has a special mea-ning for the people of Irish descent, said PIA president Maggie Territt.

“It is a day when the Irish celebrate their Irishness with their own rich and unique culture,” Territt said.

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