World

St. Patrick's celebrations go green

Updated 7:24 PM ET, Sat March 17, 2012
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A parade-goer takes part in the St Patrick's Day festivities in Dublin, Ireland, on Saturday. More than 100 parades are being held across Ireland in honor of the nation's patron saint, with up to 650,000 spectators expected in Dublin. AFP/Getty Images
A young boy smiles as he watches the St Patrick's Day festivities in Dublin. AFP/Getty Images
Two women enjoy the St. Partick's Day festivities in Dublin. AFP/Getty Images
A parade-goer dressed as a leprechaun enjoys the Dublin festivities. AFP/Getty Images
The 251st New York St. Partick's day draws a devoted and festive crowd. AFP/Getty Images
Parade-goers watch the 251st St Patrick's Day Parade up 5th Avenue in New York. AFP/Getty Images
Young parade-goers Harley and Presley Eidens celebrate their first St. Patrick's Day in New York City. AFP/Getty Images
Parade-goers glam it up for the 251st St. Patick's Day parade in New York. AFP/Getty Images
The White House fountain is dyed bright green in honor of St. Patrick's Day. Getty Images
Attendees enjoy the annual parade in Dublin, Ireland, on Saturday, March 17. More than 100 parades will be held across the country to celebrate St. Patrick's Day. AFP/Getty Images
Young girls perform during the parade on Saturday. The holiday is celebrated annually on March 17, the day the patron saint died in 461. British-born Patrick is responsible for converting the people of Ireland to Christianity after escaping slavery there. AFP/Getty Images
A band marches in the celebrations. Patron saints are chosen to protect the interests of a country, place, group, trade or profession, or activity, and to intercede for them in heaven. AFP/Getty Images
A man watches the parade from atop a traffic light. In Ireland, St. Patrick's Day is a national holiday with banks, stores and businesses closing for the day. It is tradition for people to wear green clothing on the holiday. AFP/Getty Images
Parade-goers dress up for the occasion. The Irish blessing says, "May good luck be with you / Wherever you go / And your blessing outnumber / The shamrocks that grow." AFP/Getty Images
In England, Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, presents shamrock springs to Irish Guards on Saturday. Legend says Christian missionary St. Patrick used the shamrock to explain the concept of the Holy Trinity to the Irish. AFP/Getty Images
In Australia, the Sydney Opera House is illuminated with green lights. Getty Images
The Sky Tower in Auckland, New Zealand, is lit to mark the festivities. Getty Images
In the United States, the Chicago River is dyed green annually with a secret recipe. The first U.S. St. Patrick's Day parade was held in Boston in 1737. Mark Biello/CNN