St. Patrick’s Festival was established by the Government of Ireland in November 1995.

The principal aim of St. Patrick’s Festival, since its inauguration, is to develop a major annual international festival around the national holiday over which the ‘owners’ of the festival, the Irish people, would stand proud. It sets out to reflect the talents and achievements of Irish people on many national and world stages, and it acts as an exciting showcase for the manifold skills of the people of Ireland, of every age and social background.

As the one national holiday that is celebrated in more countries around the world than any other, St. Patrick’s Day is the day when everyone wants to be Irish.

We set out to seize that opportunity, and completely transform the national and international perception of St. Patrick’s Day in Dublin. This country is bursting with the kind of creative energy, ideas and enthusiasm required to do the job. Our job has been to harness them, and make our national holiday an unforgettable experience for all.


St. Patrick’s Festival is governed by a voluntary board of Directors, see a list of Directors on the Team page.

St. Patrick’s Festival is committed to good governance and the organisation complies with all regulatory requirements and operates in accordance with its governing document, available here. Memoandarts2.pdf

St. Patrick’s Festival keeps detailed books and records of accounts and maintains strict financial controls. The organisation is transparent in its audited financial statements, with most recent statements (2015) available here Audited_accounts_2015_CRA_Upload.pdf.

Why was it started?

  • To offer a national festival that ranks amongst all of the greatest celebration in the world.
  • To create energy and excitement throughout Ireland via innovation, creativity, grassroots involvement, and marketing activity.
  • To provide the opportunity and motivation for people of Irish descent (and those who sometimes wish they were Irish) to attend and join in the imaginative and expressive celebrations.
  • To project, internationally, an accurate image of Ireland as a creative, professional and sophisticated country with wide appeal.

The first St. Patrick’s Festival was held over one day, and night, on March 17th 1996, it has since grown to a 4-5 day celebration.

Future Festival Dates:

2018: Friday 16th – Monday 19th March
2019: Friday 15th – Monday 18th March
2020: Saturday 14th – Tuesday 17th March

St. Patrick’s Day is always on 17th March.


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