Go Green For St.Patrick’s Day: How to Throw an Earth-Friendly Party

Green Growing
Photo by: Stacie (Flickr)

Put seedlings in repurposed toilet paper rolls for a humorous and green centerpiece idea at your St. Patty’s Day party.

Go Green for St.Patrick’s Day: How to Throw an Earth-Friendly Party

With the number of people who are Irish or have Irish heritage living in New York City, we take St. Patrick’s Day very seriously. We even throw a fantastic parade. NYC has always had a heavy Irish influence, so this time of year St. Patty’s Day parties abound with, of course, that ever-popular green theme. But some consider food dyes dangerous; what are you to do? Go green a different way! This post will tell you how to throw an eco-friendly party, including how you clean up the mess after the raucous crowd has left the building.

Green up the Tableware

The first thing to consider in greening up your St. Patrick’s Day party is your tableware. If you’re looking for convenience without the guilt, pick up compostable and recyclable disposable plates, bowls, beverage cups, and utensils. You might even be able to find them in a naturally dyed green color. You can go even greener, however, by buying sets of green dishes and glassware to use every year for your party. Washing them in an energy-saving dishwasher uses less energy than manufacturing the disposable ware, and your cleanup really isn’t that much more difficult.

Green up Your Décor

Balloons, centerpieces, streamers, leprechauns leading your guests to a pot of gold… all of these turn your home into a St. Patty’s Day wonderland, but most of them are made of plastic. Avoid littering your home, and then a landfill with a ton of plastic decorations. Instead, go green and find natural ways to put the party atmosphere in your home without harming the environment. First, skip those cut flower centerpieces with green balloons floating high above them and use potted green plants or baby trees instead. You can have a contest and send them home with your winning guests.

Next, look for decorations made from recycled materials that are also recyclable once the party is over. Or, better yet, make your own. Take green glass bottles or jars and fill them with candy gold coins for your pots of gold. Use cloth table linens in several different bright colors instead of paper tablecloths and napkins and make your room the rainbow. Finally, replace all your light bulbs with energy-efficient green ones so your room has a soft green glow to it. You should be able to find some at your local hardware store and you can use all the decorations year after year.

Green up the Booze – Naturally!

For many, the whole point of throwing a St. Patty’s Day party is the beer. So, after you’ve collected all of your guests’ car keys and ensured that they have a designated driver to get them home safely, serve them up in style with organic brews that are produced in an eco-friendly manner. How do you green them up? Serve them in green steins. Okay, not so much fun, but a lot safer for your guests than food dye.

Don’t fret; not all is lost. You can also make homemade beverages sure to please and be green. Call them whatever you want: Shamrock Shake, Green Goblins, Leprechaun Liquor, it doesn’t matter, but serve your guests some green cocktails naturally by mixing them up with Crème de Menthe, or making shakes that can include yummy natural ingredients like mint leaves that, when blended, will help turn the concoction green.

Green up Your Cleanup

The party’s over and everyone is safely back home sleeping off the Crème de Menthe and organic beer. You’re standing in your living room, and it looks as if a tornado struck. This is a good sign, actually; it means everyone had fun! So, let’s clean it up, greenly. If you didn’t give away your centerpieces, plant them to help clean the environment of toxins. Place all your dishes in the dishwasher and your linens in the laundry, and use eco-friendly detergents and energy-saving cleaning cycles. For a natural cleaning solution for your countertops and tables, mix filtered water, white vinegar, and hydrogen peroxide in a squirt bottle, and use that to clean up the spills. You can also use it to clean up any messes that made it to the floor or carpet, and leftover club soda will help remove any stains.

You see? Throwing a green St. Patrick’s Day party isn’t that hard, and many of the items you purchased for this year’s party will be used again, saving you money next year. Going green doesn’t have to be hard when it’s time to celebrate. You can easily make what you’re looking for, including the beverages. Whatever you do, be safe and keep your guests safe during the party and on their way home. And, most importantly, have a wonderful time and a Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

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