"Given the type of winter many Americans have had, it’s safe to say consumers are ready to shake off their winter blues with a little green."
St. Patrick’s Day, which this year falls on a Sunday (March 17), is considered by retailers to be the first sign of an economic spring. Shaking off the recent storms that were winter’s last blast, revelers will be putting on, and spending, the green, according to a spending survey released by the National Retail Federation.
Total St. Patrick’s Day spending is expected to reach $4.7 billion with the average celebrant spending $25.27 on green attire, holiday décor for their home and office, and food and drinks.
“St. Patrick’s Day is the perfect reminder that spring is right around the corner, and given the type of winter many Americans have had, it’s safe to say consumers are ready to shake off their winter blues with a little green,” said NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay in a statement. “With Easter falling only two short weeks behind St. Patrick’s Day this year, many retailers have already lined their shelves with baskets, candy and bright-colored apparel.Eight in 10 respondents to the spending survey said they will celebrate by donning green (84.2%) while nearly one-fourth (23 percent) will decorate their home or office and 35 percent will make a special dinner, the NRF reported.
St. Patrick’s Day is a unique holiday in that it is considered a non-gift-giving holiday that is all about the party. According to the survey 19.5 percent of celebrants will attend a private party, and 27 percent will attend a party at a bar or restaurant.
And who loves a party more than the young? A recent survey of Affluent households conducted by Millionaire Corner find that a majority (58 percent) of those under 40 intend to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day at a bar compared to 31 percent of tbose ages 41-50. The percentage of those who will be bar-bound on St. Patrick’s day declines with age. Similarly, 40 percent of those under 40 said they will be attending a St. Patrick’s Day party, compared about around 20 percent of older celebrants. Twenty-one percent said they plan to attend a parade, compared with 11 percent of those 60 and older who plan to sit out that festivity.
The under-40 crowd is less likely to partake in more traditional St. Patrick’s Day pursuits, such as cooking corned beef for dinner. More than four-in-ten of those ages 51 and up have this on their menu compared to just 19 percent of Millennials and Gen Xers.
Need a little boost to get into the St. Patrick’s Day spirit? There are apps for that, including St. Patrick’s Daymation, (free), which counts down the days to the special day with interesting trivia, the Irish Slang Dictionary ($0.99 cents), iBeer (free), and Yelp (free), to help find the best and most popular Irish pubs in your area.
Donald Liebenson writes news and features for Millionaire Corner. He has been published in the Chicago Tribune, The Chicago Sun-Times, The Los Angeles Times, Fiscal Times, Entertainment Weekly, Huffington Post, and other outlets. He has also served as a marketing writer for Chicago-based Questar Entertainment and distributor Baker & Taylor.
A graduate of the University of Southern California, he is married with a college-age son. He also writes extensively about entertainment.