SAN DIEGO (NEWS 8) — Irish or not, it’s time to grab something green and celebrate St. Patrick’s Day on March 17.  

These vintage News 8 clips show the many sides of St. Patrick’s Day in San Diego from the religious aspect of the day to our city’s biggest block party.  So, raise a glass – green beer or Irish whiskey might do – to St. Paddy’s Day and decades gone by.  


On St. Patrick's Day in 1979, News 8's Shirley Clum set out - wearing a green tie, of course - to see how people were celebrating in San Diego. He found the typical festivities complete with green beer at Houlihan's in Mission Valley, but also spoke with a couple in Point Loma preparing for the Shamrock Society's St. Patrick's Day Ball. Tony Gorman explained the legend of the Irish shamrock which he and his wife were preparing to take to the ball that night. 

On St. Patrick's Day in 1981, reporter Gene Cubbison spoke to Irish-Americans in San Diego about their heritage and the political climate at the time in Ireland. News 8's cameras captured scenes of celebrations at Irish pubs along with interviews that told a deeper story about people's hopes for Ireland's future. 

Reporter Larry Himmel spent March 17, 1995 on a tough News 8 assignment: finding St. Patrick's Day festivities around San Diego. Larry visited several bars and pubs to find locals - Irish and otherwise - celebrating with songs, toasts, corned beef and cabbage, and, of course, plenty of green beer. 

In 2004, Larry Himmel shared some fun St. Patrick's Day trivia from outside The Field Irish Pub in San Diego. 

One of San Diego's biggest St. Patrick's Day parties is known as ShamROCK and it's held in the Gaslamp each year. In 2005, News 8's Jeff Goldberg braved the crowds dressed in green to see what the event had to offer. This year's the event will celebrate 25 years of ShamROCK with another block party bash on Saturday, March 16.  

Click here to see more News 8 Throwback videos.