BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS - MARCH 16: Irishmen in his kilt playing his bagpipe during the St. Patrick's Day Parade held March 16, 2008. The event was held in Boston, Massachusetts. Photo via Shutterstock.

Boston Southie Parade 2024

MARCH 17, 2024


Irish coffee is best served hot at this historic St Patrick’s Day celebration.

Like Jack Donaghy of 30 Rock so often proudly proclaims, Boston is the city of the Irish. Irish people make up the largest cultural group of Massachusetts, and are one of the largest cultural groups in Boston. It only makes sense that such a historic parade found its home on Boston’s cobblestone streets.  

While many associate St Patrick’s Day parades with the fluorescent green river of Chicago, dyed each year, the American celebration of the holiday began on the East Coast. In 1737, Bostonians first marked March 17 as an act of solidarity with new Irish immigrants, honoring the Patron Saint of Ireland that shares a name with the day. 

The Southie Parade got its name from the parade’s movement to South Boston, home to a massive Irish community, in 1901. South Boston is also home to Dorchester Heights, from where thousands of British troops evacuated during the Revolutionary War on March 17, 1776 after the Americans lined the area with 300 canons. The parade celebrates both the fighting and the Irish — giving South Bend, Ind., home to Notre Dame’s Fighting Irish, a run for its money. 

Each year, the Southie Parade is held on the Sunday closest to St Patrick’s Day, which this year falls on the official green day, March 17. The parade travels a 3.5 mile loop with parade participants from — excuse the pun — all walks of life. From bagpipes to brass bands and politicians on floats and military marching, the city cheers everything Boston and Irish. 

The Specs

  • Around 1,000,000 people attend each year.
  • Admission to the parade is free.
  • Not local and looking for places to be and things to do? Check out our guide to Boston here.


What is the closest airport to the Southie Parade?

The closest airport is Boston’s Logan International Airport (BOS). 

Where is the parade held?

The parade is held in South Boston. 

What is the parade path? 

The 3.5 mile parade begins at Andrew Square and ends at the Broadway “T” Station. 

What kind of bag can I bring to the Southie Parade?

Backpacks and large bags are discouraged.


BY Sarah Cortina