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Press Release: St Patrick’s Day in Japan 2018

On 16 February, Ireland’s Ambassador to Japan, Anne Barrington, launched the official programme of events for St Patrick’s Day in Japan 2018 at Tokyo’s Foreign Correspondents Club

Ambassador of Ireland launches St Patrick’s Day in Japan 2018

From Tokyo to Okinawa, Irish in Japan and Japanese friends of Ireland join the green celebration.
A great way to build on friendships in the lead up to 2019 Rugby World Cup year.

駐日アイルランド大使、2018年のセント・パトリックス・デー イベントプログラムを発表


On 16 February, Ireland’s Ambassador to Japan, Anne Barrington, launched the official programme of events for St Patrick’s Day in Japan 2018 at Tokyo’s Foreign Correspondents Club. “Along with another popular Irish Holiday, Halloween, the celebration of Ireland’s national day has captured the hearts of Japan’s fun-loving people, and many events are planned around the country, throughout March”.

This year, events include 14 parades and festivals in a wide network of venues around Japan. In Tokyo on 17 & 18 March, a major 2-day event, the Ireland Japan Chamber of Commerce’s ‘I Love Ireland Festival’ in Yoyogi Park, will bring a wide offering of Irish culture, sports, traditional Irish food & drink, to visitors of all ages. On Sunday 18 March, Asia’s oldest and biggest St Patricks Day event, the Irish Network Japan Tokyo Parade, will wind its way down Omotesando avenue, with marching bands, musicians and dancers, led by the Parade Grand Marshal and invited Irish and Japanese VIP guests, including visiting Irish Government Minister, Mr Eoghan Murphy, the reigning Miss World Japan and of course, Saint Patrick himself!

The Ambassador welcomed the green illumination of two iconic sites in Japan this year, Ohtorii gate on Ise’s main thoroughfare from 1 – 18 March and Yokohama’s Marine Tower illuminated in green for the first time, on 10 March, marking the city’s close relationship with Ireland since its inaugural parade on Motomachi Shopping Street 14 years ago.

“This brings the number of green illuminations to 300 across the globe, including sites such as the Colosseum in Rome, New York’s Chrysler Building and Niagara Falls in Ontario, Canada”, the Ambassador said, “St Patrick’s Day is a worldwide celebration and I am delighted that our Japanese friends can join the party here and be ‘Irish for a day’!”

“St Patrick’s Day is a celebration of all things Irish and a great opportunity to build friendships and mutual understanding with our Japanese hosts. I hope that someday, many more of our fans in Japan will get a chance to visit Ireland and see for themselves the beautiful natural scenery which inspires our national colour and gives our country its nickname, ‘the Emerald Isle’!”.

“Meanwhile, I invite everyone to wear something green and join the fun, wherever they are in Japan. We are all preparing for 2019 and the Rugby World Cup when Ireland and Japan will meet as competitors on the pitch. And following that we will have the 2020 Olympics. I hope that St Patrick’s Day 2018 will be a prelude leading to even more exciting events in the future”.


NOTE: Ireland’s national day, St Patrick’s Day, takes place on 17 March, and is named after the fifth-century saint who introduced Christianity to Ireland. St Patrick’s Day has been celebrated in Ireland for nearly 1,200 years, and in the United States for more than 250 years. Japan’s first St Patrick’s Day parade was held in Tokyo 26 years ago. Every year, millions of people around the world join the parades and parties and put on green clothes to celebrate this special day.