The history is rooted in Norse Mythology. The god balder had a recurring dream of his own death and became very depressed. This caused his mother Frigga to worry about her son. As a solution she went around to each item on the Earth and made them swear never to harm her son Balder. They all agreed except for the mistletoe plant. Being a small and insignificant plant she wasn’t worried, and her son was relieved and happy again. With his new found invincibility the other gods playing a game throwing objects at Balder who was unable to be harmed by them. The chief protagonist of Norse mythology, Loki learned of Balder’s weakness for mistletoe and began to construct a magical spear made from the plant. He then tricked Baldar’s brother into hurling the spear at him and killing him. His dream had come true and his mother wept tears of white berries. To bring her son back to life she vowed that she would kiss anyone who stood
Regardless of whether or not you are Irish or not, Irish pubs and bars have been popular for generations. The following are a list of 10 different Irish bars and pubs located throughout the U.S. that are well known for their Irish food, drink, Irish music, and camaraderie.
McSorley’s Old Ale House
Established in the year 1854, McSorley’s Old Ale House is the oldest of New York City’s bars and saloons. Noted patrons from John Lennon to Abe Lincoln have had pint and spent time in McSorley’s Ale House. The walls of this famous establishment are covered with historic information and the floors are strewn with sawdust to give them an authentic and unmistakable appearance.
Known as being the “Home of the Perfect Pint”, the Snug in Boston offers an extensive menu along with wonderful entertainment. Ellen and Ed, the owners of The Snug, are always awaiting the arrival of visitors. The Snug is perhaps most well-known for its European draft system which is state-of-the-art.
Grafton Pub & Grill
The Grafton Pub & Grill in Chicago, which is named after a renowned street located in Dublin, is well known for its hospitality, and for its selection of over 70 beers, and a collection of Scottish and Irish whiskies. Along with beer and whisky, the Grafton Pub & Grill boasts wonderful American and Irish comfort foods and live music Sunday through Wednesday.
Buskers is a Irish Bar and Restaurant which is family owned and located in Newport, Rhode Island. After its renovations in 2003, this quaint location became the cozy niche which is enjoyed by visitors today. It has a great selection of food and beverages, a genuine Irish atmosphere complete with pictures, artifacts, and antiques.
Anna Liffey’s is an Irish Bar located in New Haven Connecticut, which has received the Head Brew Master’s “Perfect Pint Award”. Each Sunday, visitors can enjoy live Irish music, Tuesday night for Trivia night and each Saturday to enjoy local bands.
Kells in Portland has become well-known as the as the U.S.’s #1 Irish Restaurant and bar and has served its many visitors for 25 years. People who come into Kells Portland are met with wonderful food, unparalled service, live Irish music 7 days a week, and a welcoming atmosphere.
McGillin’s Olde Ale House
McGillin’s Olde Ale House in Philadelphia, was opened the year that Lincoln was elected as president, soon after the Liberty Bell was cracked and before the breaking of the ground for the construction of Philadelphia City Hall. Established in 1860, this Ale House is the oldest tavern still operating in Philadelphia.
Kevin Barry’s Pub, which is situated in Savannah, Georgia, is located on the Savannah River in one of the city’s oldest buildings. They also offers delicious food, a wide selection of beers and alcohol, as well as live Irish music. Kevin Barr’s which is opened in 1980, is a well-known spot for military personnel, and is known across the world as a wonderful Irish spot.
Fado Irish Pub
The word Fadó, which is translated as “long ago”, is a perfect name for this bar that is steeped in culture and a genuine atmosphere. Fado Irish Pub in Washington DC, is the perfect location for family outings, office lunches, and fun nights full of food, drink, and music.
The Kerry Irish Pub
The Kerry Irish Pub in New Orleans, was established in 1993, was initially a haven for those who enjoyed live Irish music but quickly became a location for people who wish to enjoy all types of music including rock, folk, country, Irish, roots rock, bluegrass, and other types of soul music. The venue is always available to local as well as visiting musicians.
There are numerous Irish bars and pubs scattered throughout the country, many of which are very enjoyable. However, if you find yourself living in or visiting an area close to these bars, they are a sure ticket to an enjoyable and wonderful time out.
Photo credit: Un ragazzo chiamato Bi
The Pilgrims left England in 1620 for the Virginia coast. However do to a storm they were thrown off course and landed in Plymouth. They decided to stay in this new location rather than navigate back to Virginia. Winters in the area proved much harsher than those in Virginia and the settlers were unprepared. They began to construct houses, but not enough were built before the onset of winter, and many pilgrims had to remain on the ship throughout the bitter winter. By the time spring had emerged nearly half of the pilgrims had died do to lack of food, proper housing, and medical conditions.
A Native American named Massasoit from the neighboring Wampanoag tribe visits the Plymouth colony and welcomes the new settlers. He speaks English that he learned from other fishermen who had visited the area. He introduces the tribe to Squanto another Native American who speaks English, and the chief of the Wampanoag tribe Chief Massasoit. The Chief welcomes the new settlers, they exchange gifts and a treaty of friendship is made.
In 1621 the Mayflower sails back to England and all of the Pilgrims stay in the new land. The Wampanoag teach the colonists about hunting fishing and farming the land. Later in the year Massasoit and Squanto are captured by another Native American Tribe the Narraganset. The pilgrims send a rescue party and are able to retrieve Squanto and Massasoit.
In the fall of 1621 the colonists have their first harvest. To celebrate Governor William Bradford decides to celebrate and give thanks with a three day feast. The 52 colonists and 90 members of the Wampanoag tribe take part in the celebration. This was the first Thanksgiving celebration.
Photo credit: wikipedia
On November 25th 2005 at 9am EST Macy’s will hold its annual Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. The parade starts on 77th street and Central Park West and ends on 7th Avenue and 34th street. The parade can be viewed from different location throughout Manhattan but some of the best spots are 70th street Columbus circle to 65th Street, anywhere on Columbus circle, Broadway between 59th and 38th streets, and 34th street anywhere between Broadway and 7th Avenue.
If you are interested in viewing the parade you should plan on staking out a spot somewhere between 5 and 6am in the morning. Be sure to wear lots of layers and warm clothing as it can quite often be cold. You will be able to purchase bagels, hot chocolate, and coffee from nearby street vendors. If you are viewing from the start of the parade route it will take about 90 minutes to see the entire parade, if you are at the end of the route it will take almost 3 hours to see the whole parade. Television coverage is scheduled to begin at 9 AM. For a sneak peek at some of the balloons as they get blown up visit Central Park near the Museum of Natural History the day before between 3pm and 10pm.
The Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade was started in 1924 as a thank you gift to the residents of Manhattan from Macy’s. The first helium balloon appeared in 1929. The first Mickey Mouse Balloon appeared in the parade in 1934. During 1942 through 1944 the parade wasn’t held and all of the balloons were donated to the war effort, as rubber was a rare and valuable commodity at the time. In 1945 the parade returned and was more amazing and spectacular than any of the parades before. This was the first parade to be televised and had over 2 million spectators. !957 marked one of the parades unusual accidents, the Popeye balloon filled with water from a rain shower earlier that morning, during the parade the extra weight caused the balloon to veer off course and bump into a nearby building. The collision caused the water to dump out all over parade bystanders. In 1958 there was a helium shortage so the balloons were suspended from construction cranes and filled with air. In the early 1960’s some of the older and more popular balloons were introduced including underdog, Bullwinkle, snoopy and Kermit the frog. 1969 marked the first year that parade floats were included in the parade. Parade floats are generally built on the chassis of an old school bus. In 1976 the parade was an extravaganza that the country had never seen before. It had a battalion of minuteman to celebrate the bicentennial anniversary of the United States independence. Earlier that year Macy’s started the Fourth of July fireworks display, a tradition that is carried on till this day. Today over 2.5 million people line the 2 and half mile parade route and another 40 million viewers watch the parade on TV. In addition to the floats and balloons, the parade now has broadways shows, and other popular musical acts performing in the parade. It’s been a long running tradition to end the parade with Santa’s sleigh every year.
Irish beers, stouts, and ales offer up excellence in a bottle. The richness of the flavors satisfies the palate. Ranging in strength from light to powerful, both overtones and undertones of coffee, caramel, and chocolate make these drinks a wonderful gourmet experience. Of course, some are better than others. The following is a guide to various Irish beverages. [Read more…]
The Chinese Zodiac is made up of 12 animals, rat, tiger, rabbit, dragon, snake, horse, ram, monkey, rooster, dog and boar. According to legend the Jade Emperor instructed the rat to find the animals and bring them to the bank of the river. In addition to the 12 animals mentioned a cat was also involved. The animals were to cross the river to the other side, the order in which they crossed would also determine the order they would be placed in on the zodiac. The rat and cat decided to be clever and ride across on the back of the ox. When they approached the far bank the rat pushed the cat into the water and jumped of the back of the ox to be placed first. The cat never made it out of the river and the boar was the last to cross. From that moment on the cat has been the sworn enemy of the rat. [Read more…]
Since ancient times the First Day of Spring has been an important day. It marks a change in temperatures and is also known as the vernal equinox. In the northern hemisphere, it is the emergence from the darkness of winter. For the southern hemisphere, the opposite is true and marks a time to begin preparation for rest. [Read more…]
Easter, unlike Christmas is a movable holiday. Easter falls on the first Sunday after the first ecclesiastical moon after the vernal equinox. There are some differences between a full moon and an ecclesiastical moon. Generally these two fall on the same day, but this was not the case in 1876. When pope Gregory the XIII standardized the calendar in 1582 the primary reason was to get Easter back in synchronization with the calendar (10 days in October had to be entirely skipped). According to Butchers algorithm Easter can fall between March 22nd and April 25th
Easter Island was named by Admiral Rogeveen who ‘discovered it’ in 1722. Its people and language are called Rapa Nui and they know the island as ‘te Pito o te Henua’ or the navel of the world. Easter Island has been an archeological mystery ever since it was first discovered. The island is covered with giant monolithic stone statues known as Moai. Much like the pyramids of ancient Egypt modern scholars are uncertain how the primitive people were able to construct, transport and erect the giant statues with limited technology. Many scientists have tried to re-enact erecting the statues, but none have met with success. To this day the moai remain and enigmatic unsolved mystery