St Patrick’s celebrations get green light around the world
Some 150 iconic landmarks and sites around the world will be illuminated in green over the coming days as part of Tourism Ireland’s 2015 Global Greening initiative to celebrate the island of Ireland and St Patrick.
From Rome to Rio and from London to Las Vegas, a host of buildings and sites around the world are turning a shade of green to celebrate the national day.
In a major coup for Irish tourism, these sites include the Colosseum in Rome, the Sacré Cœur basilica in Paris and Edinburgh Castle for the first time ever – as well as the Great Wall of China, Niagara Falls, the Christ the Redeemer statue in Rio de Janeiro and the famous ‘Welcome’ sign in Las Vegas.
“The strength of the Global Greening initiative is demonstrated by its growth since it was first introduced. The fact that 150 buildings have opted to go green to celebrate St Patrick’s Day this year brings an enormous sense of pride to our people at home and across the world,” said Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport Paschal Donohoe.
“Being able to put ourselves front and centre on the world stage in this way reaps unrivalled dividends in terms of publicity, promoting Ireland and getting the message out about our recovery and the progress we are making. Having spent the last five days in California representing the Government for the St Patrick’s Day programme, I saw first hand the impact this feast day has on the diaspora, and in the boardrooms.
“It is estimated that last year, the Government’s St Patrick’s Day efforts secured €5m in new business. It is my hope that as our recovery is deepened, we will improve on that figure and translate that investment into jobs at home.”
CEO of Tourism Ireland Niall Gibbons added: “This is the sixth year of Tourism Ireland’s Global Greening initiative and it’s bigger and better than ever this year, with some famous additions like the Colosseum in Rome, the Sacré Cœur basilica in Paris, Edinburgh Castle, the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville, the Place de l’Etoile in Beirut and even the Equator Sign and Line in Uganda. “St Patrick’s Day traditionally marks the real start of the tourism season for us; our aim is to bring a smile to the faces of people around the world and to convey the message that Ireland offers the warmest of welcomes and great fun, as well as wonderful scenery and heritage.”