Celebrating Saint Patrick’s Day with Festive Four Wheelers

With Saint Patrick’s Day right around the corner, we want to share the history of the holiday and also thought it would be fun to check out some of the decked out classic Volkswagens showing off their Irish spirit.



Before we show you some of the dandy decorations, let’s refresh your memory on the national holiday.

Saint Patrick, [1] “the patron saint and national apostle of Ireland, was credited with bringing Christianity to its people. Perhaps the most well-known legend is that he explained the Holy Trinity using the three leaves of a native Irish clover, the shamrock.” After his death on March 17, 461, the people of Ireland celebrated Saint Patrick’s legacy with a church service followed by dancing, drinking and feasting.

To this day, March 17 is a day of celebration! But did you know that the first Saint Patrick’s Day parade didn’t occur until 1300 years after his death? Something even crazier than that, it wasn’t even in Ireland!!

The parade took place in 1762 when Irish soldiers paid respect to their national icon with a march through New York City. [1] “Along with their music, the parade helped the soldiers reconnect with their Irish roots, as well as with fellow Irishmen serving in the English army.”

The parade was so successful that the following year and for 35 years after, Irish societies formed and started their own parades. In 1848, the societies came together and established the New York City St. Patrick’s Day Parade. [1] “Today, that parade is the world’s oldest civilian parade and the largest in the United States, with over 150,000 participants. Each year, nearly 3 million people line the 1.5 mile parade route to watch the procession which takes more than five hours.”

Take a look at some of the Volkswagens that made their debut in one of the many Saint Patrick’s Day Parades around the world.

If you haven’t noticed, green is pretty prevalent on this holiday so much so that someone who is not wearing green will get pinched. Have you ever wondered where that myth came from?

First things first, just because Ireland’s landscape is predominantly green it has nothing to do with why we wear green. [2] “In fact, blue is believed to have been associated with Ireland before green was. Henry the VIII claimed to be King of Ireland in the 16th Century, and his flag at that point would have been blue.” The first spot of green didn’t occur until the 17th Century when Owen Roe O’Neill, a military commander, led a rebellion against the English crown “and used a green flag with a harp to represent the Confederation of Kilkenny, a group that sought to govern Ireland.”

Finally in the 1790’s, the Society of United Irishmen wore green uniforms to distinguish themselves as revolutionaries who promoted republican and nonsectarian ideas in Ireland. [2] “Though the rest of the uniform eventually faded from popular wear, the importance of the color green spread, thanks in part to the poems and ballads written during this time, most famously ‘The Wearing of Green.’”

Wearing green didn’t make it to the United States until the 19th Century when Irish natives immigrated to the country donning green and Irish flags. Since then it’s been a tradition and people all over the world become Irish for a day!

The other tradition that only occurs on Saint Patrick’s Day is pinching anyone who is not wearing green. 

This may only be a tradition in grade school but it occurs and we think the story behind it is pretty interesting.

By now, we’ve all heard of Leprechauns. No, not the cheesy horror flick from the 80’s. We’re talking about the mythical creature that apparently has a steady job as a shoemaker but is a kleptomaniac who likes to play tricks on humans. Legend has it that the color green will make people invisible to Leprechauns.  [3] “As the dubious legend dictates, leprechauns would pinch anyone not wearing green – so people pinch those not wearing green to remind them.”

This is our friendly reminder to wear green just in case your coworkers, friends or family feel the need to digress back to childhood this Saint Patrick’s Day. We’d also like to remind you to drink responsibly, leave your VW at home and take an Uber or Lyft to and from wherever you plan to celebrate.

From all of us at JBugs, have a happy and safe Saint Patrick’s Day!! 


[1] History Channel. (n.d.). History of St. Patrick’s Day. [History Channel Online Article]. Retrieved on 02/07/2018 from http://www.history.com/topics/st-patricks-day/history-of-st-patricks-day

[2] Waxman, O. B. (2017). How Green Became Associated with St. Patrick’s Day and All Things Irish. [Time Magazine Online Article]. Retrieved on 02/08/2018 from http://time.com/4699771/green-irish-st-patricks-day-color/

[3] Payton, M. (2017). St. Partrick’s Day Today: Who was Ireland’s Patron Saint? Why Wear Green? Why Do you Pinch Someone? [Independent Online Article]. Retrieved on 02/08/2018 from http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/st-patrick-day-2017-today-ireland-google-doodle-patron-saint-why-wear-green-shamrock-pinch-how-did-a7634906.html

Photo Credit

New York City St. Patrick's Day Parade

Pinch Buggy

Pinching Leprechaun

Society of United Irishmen

St. Patrick

St. Patrick’s Day Classic VW Beetle

St. Patrick’s Day Classic VW Beetle 2

St. Patrick’s Day Classic VW Beetle 3

St. Patrick’s Day Classic VW Beetle 4

St. Patrick’s Day Classic VW Beetle 5

St. Patrick’s Day Classic VW Beetle 6

St. Patrick’s Day Classic VW Bus

St. Patrick’s Day Classic VW Bus 2

St. Patrick’s Day Classic VW Bus 3

St. Patrick’s Day Classic VW Bus & Thing

St. Patrick’s Day Classic VW Notchback

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