Tourism Ireland has announced details of some of the famous attractions and sites around the world that will go green this year as part of the 2021 Global Greening line-up to celebrate St. Patrick's Day.
The Global Greening initiative first began 11 years ago in Australia, when the Sydney Opera House was illuminated in green on March 17, 2010, and the iconic opera house will join Tourism Ireland's Global Greening line-up once again this year.
New for 2021 is the most northerly "greening" in the world ever - a postbox at the summit of Øretoppen Mountain in Norway, 350 kilometres above the Arctic Circle.
Other new sites taking part in the Global Greening initiative this year include Gwrych Castle in Wales, the filming location for the most recent series of reality TV show I'm A Celebrity...Get Me Out Of Here; the largest fountain in the world, The Palm Fountain in Dubai; the tallest building in South America, the Torre Costanera in Chile; Bled Castle in Slovenia; Pacific Park on the Santa Monica Pier in California; BC Place in Vancouver; the Sekenani Gate at the Maasai Mara National Reserve in Kenya; and Villa E-1027 in Roquebrune-Cap-Martin in France, which was designed and built by Irish architect and furniture designer Eileen Gray.
These new sites will join some "old favourites" that have gone green in previous years, including the Leaning Tower of Pisa, Niagara Falls, Victoria Falls, the "Welcome" sign in Las Vegas, the London Eye, the Sky Tower in Auckland, the Prince's Palace of Monaco and the Cibeles Fountain in Madrid among many others.
In rolling out its 2021 Global Greening initiative, Tourism Ireland is aiming to bring some positivity and hope to the people around the world who claim links to the island of Ireland. At a time when Irish people overseas cannot travel home, Tourism Ireland wants to shine a green light in as many locations around the world as possible, giving the country's diaspora a sense of connection with home.
Tourism Minister Statement
Minister for tourism, culture, arts, Gaeltacht, sport and media Catherine Martin stated, "Today, we're launching Tourism Ireland's 2021 Global Greening initiative, which has become so successful in helping to keep the island of Ireland in the spotlight overseas during the St Patrick's Day period. The Global Greening initiative complements the Global Ireland strategy, which aims to strengthen Ireland's engagement with our Diaspora and bring our rich culture and heritage to wider audiences. St Patrick's Day provides a truly unique opportunity to promote Ireland on the international stage and to renew the strong bonds between Ireland, the international Irish community and our global partners. I would like to commend staff in our embassies and missions overseas, in the Department of Foreign Affairs and in Tourism Ireland for the outstanding work they have done in organising this initiative around the world."
Tourism Ireland CEO Statement
Tourism Ireland CEO Niall Gibbons stated, "2021 marks the 12th year of Tourism Ireland's Global Greening initiative and each year I am delighted to see so many attractions and landmark sites wishing to get involved and to mark St Patrick's Day. More than 70 million people around the world claim links to the island of Ireland and St Patrick's Day is a truly unique opportunity to reconnect them with their heritage. This year, in particular, we aim to bring some positivity and hope to our Diaspora across the globe. At a time when Irish people overseas cannot travel home, we want to shine a green light in as many locations around the world as possible, giving our diaspora a sense of connection with home and reminding them that we cannot wait to welcome them back, as soon as it is possible to do so.
"The success of our Global Greening initiative is due in no small part to the great work that has been carried out across the world by Irish people and the diaspora. I would particularly like to thank the Department of Foreign Affairs for the great support we receive from the Irish embassy network, as well as Education in Ireland and their work with partner universities and colleges. The eagerness of cities and countries everywhere to take part, despite the current unprecedented challenges, underlines the strength of the deep connection that people all over the world feel to Ireland."
Virtual Celebration And Programme Of Promotions
St Patrick's Day will be a virtual celebration in 2021, however, Tourism Ireland will roll out an extensive programme of promotions to capitalise on the heightened exposure for Ireland around the globe on March 17, to ensure that Ireland remains "top of mind" as a holiday destination for bookings when the time is right.
Tourism Ireland's St Patrick's Day programme will include:
- a tailor-made event called "St Patrick's Day @ Home Live", which will be live-streamed on social media from Johnnie Fox's pub in the Dublin Mountains, as well as from other locations around the island of Ireland;
- a new online video, inspiring people to think about holidaying in Ireland in the future, without encouraging travel right now;
- a big international publicity push in the run-up to, and on, St Patrick's Day;
- and a programme of virtual travel trade and media events in all overseas markets to mark Ireland's national day.
Gibbons added, "This year, against the ongoing backdrop of COVID-19, our St Patrick's Day programme around the world is more important than ever before. During this challenging time, we want to mark St. Patrick's Day and to keep Ireland to the fore in a positive light, on the day when people everywhere are thinking about Ireland."
Armagh Online Celebrations
Meanwhile, Co. Armagh has unveiled details of a six day schedule of online events to celebrate Ireland's famous patron saint with the world this month.
Starting on Friday March 12 and concluding on St. Patrick's Day, Armagh's fully virtual "At Home with St. Patrick Festival" will consist of a programme of events that will be themed with snakes, shamrocks, history and culture, and traditional music and dance, as well as plenty of inspiring food and drink ideas.
From the iconic Navan Fort to the county's famous orchards, cathedrals, theatres and libraries, Armagh's most renowned tourism sites and attractions will be showcased during the festival.
Lord Mayor Of Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Statement
Lord Mayor of Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Kevin Savage stated, "Built, shaped and steeped in St. Patrick, Armagh remains the true home of Ireland's first citizen, and we're proud to celebrate his iconic legacy from a remarkable city that will bring laughter, enjoyment, reflection and hope to the world in this challenging year.
"Famed for its orchards, its warm hospitality, friendly people, history, culture, and outstanding food and drink, Armagh will continue to surprise many for its must-visit destination appeal, and we really hope that this local and global celebration will inspire and engage many people of all ages to experience this place for real when all of us can."
Festival Line-Up Highlights
Consisting of 19 free-to-attend events, the virtual festival's line-up will include:
- an Irish dance masterclass from Riverdance's Jason O'Neill, who will present the dance masterclass from Armagh's Market Place Theatre alongside two local dancers, 12 year old world champion Blaithin Mohan and Ciara McGivern, who is placed ninth in the world;
- an online dramatisation at Navan Fort that will chronicle St. Patrick's early life and his discussions with lord chieftain and legend Daire as he searched for a site in Armagh to establish his first church;
- an illustrated talk of by Dr. Rachel Moss of Trinity College Dublin that will include an illustrated presentation that gives insights into the iconic symbolism and arts linked with St. Patrick;
- a performance by the band Réalta, live from The Market Place Theatre;
- a St. Patrick's Day breakfast cook-along with Simon Dougan from Yellow Door and theatre entertainer May McFettridge to share a hearty Ulster breakfast using the ingredients from across the region's food heartland;
- and a performance by the band All Folk’d Up, also live from The Market Place Theatre.
All events are free to attend, however some events require registration in advance. The full programme of events can be downloaded via visitarmagh.com/stpatrick.
Savage added, "From our home to your home, our 'At home with St. Patrick Festival' will safely delight and excite everyone from near and far. Let us awaken your senses!"
© 2021 Hospitality Ireland – your source for the latest industry news. Article by Dave Simpson. Click subscribe to sign up for the Hospitality Ireland print edition.