St. Patrick’s Day is one of the few days of the year when you can drink to excess without feeling like a complete disappointment. (Uh, assuming you’re 21 or older, of course.) Because St. Pat’s falls on a Friday this year, you’ll need at least five bars in which to celebrate: Thursday night’s pre party, Friday’s daytime celebration, Friday’s nighttime celebration, Saturday’s afterparty, and Sunday’s recovery. Any of these bars would be great places to spend St. Pat’s (they all offer special drink deals), but we’ve scheduled them for you ahead of time so you can get the most out of your St. Patrick’s
Thursday Night Preparty: O’Brien’s Irish Pub & Restaurant
O’Brien’s is a good ol’ fashioned Irish bar located in Santa Monica on the corner of Wilshire and 23rd, which is both very drivable from campus and within stumbling distance of our other Santa Monica bars depending on your shoes and… well, let’s say how Irish you’ve already been that evening. O’Brien’s opens at 8 a.m. on St. Patrick’s Day with no reservations required, but it would be the perfect place to preparty on Thursday night; you can even have dinner thanks to its wide variety of both traditional pub grub and more authentic Irish specialties. O’Brien’s boasts they have the best outdoor patio for watching sports in LA — it’s March Madness this weekend, after all — but you can be the o’judge of that.
Friday Daytime: Brennan’s
Brennan’s, located on Lincoln Boulevard about a mile north of campus, is an LMU St. Pat’s tradition. Every year, students wake up early and head to the spacious bar, which opens at 8 a.m. and closes at 2 a.m. There’s no cover charge if you get there before noon; after noon, it’s $10. Brennan’s is known for their outdoor turtle races, and what’s more Irish than turtles?
“Brennan’s is one of my favorite bars on the Westside,” says Connor Maund, a communications major who graduated from LMU last year and is regarded by many of his friends as “King of Brennan’s.” “Especially being an LMU student, you are going to know every single person there and it is such a good place to hang with friends, drink beer, and, of course, celebrate St. Patrick’s Day.”
The bar is well aware of its status as both a St. Pat’s Mecca and a place where lots of people are going to get really drunk. In anticipation of this, the bar partners with taxi services and Uber to make sure there are plenty of available rides for people who have no business driving themselves home.
“It’s literally like we prepared for this all year — it’s our Super Bowl,” says Brennan’s employee Tyler Carlson. “There’s a few things we’re gonna be having: a live band [Decadent Decades], two different DJs, bagpipes, drummers… we’re going the full nine yards.”
Friday Evening: Circle Bar
Circle Bar on Santa Monica’s Main Street is a little ways from campus, but it’s one of two designated starting points for Santa Monica’s annual St. Patrick’s Day pub crawl on Friday (and Saturday). Tickets can be purchased here ahead of time, with prices ranging from $5 to $40, but there’s also on-site registration. The fee for joining is offset by drink deals; draft beers on the crawl start as low as $4, with 2-for-1 deals on mixed drinks and $5 shots. Once you register and get your tickets during the designated times, you’ll be free to walk into any of the participating watering holes (they include Britannia Pub, Cult, and Lanea) and party like it’s 1999… in Ireland.
Saturday Night Afterparty: Cabo Cantina
As you may have guessed, Cabo Cantina is not an Irish bar per se. But it is the place to register for another boozy event, the Lucky’s St. Patrick’s Day Bar Crawl. Check in is between 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. Saturday (or, of course, Friday), and tickets range from $1 to $25. This year, Cabo is offering $4.49 green beer, $5 Shamrock shots, and $10 green Patron margaritas along with its usual Mexican fare.
Sunday Recovery: Jameson’s Irish Pub
The name Jameson is familiar to anyone who enjoys a nip of the famed blended Irish whiskey made in Dublin. While Jameson’s Irish Pub is unaffiliated with the whiskey brand, it most certainly sells plenty of it. According to the bar’s website, the owners “pride ourselves on being frequented by groups of vibrant, young professionals and surrounded by a friendly and upscale community.” So if you’re looking for a scrappy dive that brings to mind a Dublin back alley, Jameson’s is not it. But its pleasant atmosphere, giant oval bar, and “Hair of the Dog” Sunday brunch will help ease you back into respectable life after a long weekend of honoring Ireland’s favorite snake catcher.