The Chicago Files

A CANADIAN EXPAT'S EXPERIENCES AND OBSERVATIONS LIVING IN THE WINDY CITY!

Chicago River Green 2015 2

– photo courtesy http://www.chicagotribune.com

Irish eyes must certainly be smiling again this year with the annual green dyeing of the Chicago River in honor of St. Patrick’s Day.

Have a look at this video to see a speedy version of how this transformation takes place:

– video courtesy of frootis at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCINI0xYv-RG74K8zTox8kaQ

Let’s take a quick jaunt down memory lane to see how this tradition transformed the way Chicagoans view St. Patrick’s Day.

In 1962, Mayor Richard J. Daley advocated to his old school friend (and Chicago Plumbers Union business manager) Stephen Bailey, that part of Lake Michigan be dyed green to celebrate to St. Patrick’s Day.  Mr. Bailey proposed a more practical suggestion:  dye the Chicago River green instead.  Thus became a ritual steeped in mystery as to the actual concoction from which the dye is made.  The only reveal is that it is vegetable-based, environmentally friendly, and lasts a mere few days when ‘magically’ the water is revised back to its original hue.  The Chicago Plumbers Union, Local 130, have participated in the pouring of the powder ever since.

Chicago River Green 2015 1

– photo courtesy of chicagotribune.com

As you can see in the above photo, the enigmatic powder is actually orange until it mixes with motion.  Ah, then the fun begins!  Approximately 40 pounds of the grit is all it takes to change the Chicago River a brilliant green.  Believe it or not, the river rears its green sheen after about 45 minutes!

Chicago River Green 2015 3

– photo courtesy of http://pics.mcclatchyinteractive.com

There is a large Irish population in Chicago; however, St. Patrick’s Day celebrations are for everyone; why, one look at the river and you’ll understand what inclusive really means!

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40 thoughts on “Chicago River Salutes St. Patrick’s Day in a brilliant, green way!

  1. Allison says:

    Wow this is so cool, Cher!! How fascinating! This always reminds me of the scene in The Fugitive with Tommy Lee Jones and Harrison Ford – have you seen that?

    Hope your Sunday is feeling . . . lucky . . ! 😉

    Super sized hugs your way, my sweet friend! XOXOXO

    Liked by 1 person

    1. seaangel4444 says:

      Hi dear, isn’t it cool! No, I haven’t seen that, but now you know I’ll have to for sure; thank you, Allison! Ah bless; to you as well my dear friend! Cher xoxo

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Allison says:

        It’s great – Tommy Lee says something like “If they dye the river green one day a year why can’t they dye it blue the other 364 days of the year?” Too funny.

        Thanks for your great post! I love the new look of your blog by the way! 😉

        XO

        Liked by 1 person

      2. seaangel4444 says:

        Oh I absolutely must see that! Thank you for telling me about it! Ah, bless! Thank you, Allison! That means so much to me coming from YOU!! Cher xo

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Allison says:

        Haha Cher – if you see it – do feel free to send me random quotes from the movie. My son and I could practically recite the whole thing, lol.

        Stay gorgeous, my friend!!! 😉 XO

        Liked by 1 person

      4. seaangel4444 says:

        I shall certainly let you know of some of my fav quotes when I watch it! Ah, thank you, dear! You too!! Cher xo

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Mike says:

    Nice! Is Rahmbo promising to walk on green water if re-elected?

    Like

    1. seaangel4444 says:

      *LOL* Boy, I’m leaving that one on the river walkway, Mike!! 😉 Cher xo

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Mike says:

        A wide decision, Cher!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Mike says:

        Wise! Darn serotype 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      3. seaangel4444 says:

        *biggest grin* Cher xo

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Dr. Rex says:

    Reblogged this on It Is What It Is and commented:
    This is awesome …. thx for sharing!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. seaangel4444 says:

      Thank you so much, dear Horty! Cher xo

      Like

  4. Carolyne Garman says:

    I liked the bright light reflections of the building windows in the water on the upper left part of the river, They appear at about second #36 and get brilliant at about #58 and then gradually disappear.

    Like

    1. seaangel4444 says:

      It’s a great effect, isn’t it? Love, Cher xo

      Like

  5. Ompong says:

    What a vividly captured scene…! Keep it up! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. seaangel4444 says:

      Thank you for your kind words; I didn’t take these photos, but they are great captures of the river, aren’t they? Cher xo

      Liked by 1 person

  6. The Chicago, St. Patricks Day Parade is on my bucket list to see the green river.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. seaangel4444 says:

      Ah, bless! I think that’s wonderful! Such great fun! You would love it! Cher xo

      Liked by 1 person

  7. John says:

    Love the video, all those little ants scurrying about!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. seaangel4444 says:

      I thought they looked like ants too, John! *LOL* Cher xo

      Liked by 1 person

    1. seaangel4444 says:

      Thanks so much for stopping by and having a look at this crazy green river!! *grin* Cher xo

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Love the green river, Cher. Gorgeous. What a lovely idea! Nice post.

    Like

    1. seaangel4444 says:

      Thank you, dear Carol! It is quite a nice tradition!! I am so happy to hear that the dye is vegetable based and environmentally friendly, too! Cher xo

      Liked by 1 person

  9. My daughter and son-in-law have never mentioned this phenomenon! Thanks so much.

    Like

    1. seaangel4444 says:

      Well you shall have to let them know you are quite informed about the St. Patrick’s Day tradition of their city! *grin* Cher xo

      Like

  10. seeker says:

    You guys know how to party! Happy St. Patrick’s Day, Angel.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. seaangel4444 says:

      Ah dear seeker! Happy St. Patrick’s Day to you, my dear! Big hugs, Cher xo

      Like

  11. I’ve been boasting on Facebook, Cher, that I now know, courtesy of your blog, that Chicago has a river (fancy that!) and it gets dyed green on St Patrick’s Day. Fancy that, too! xx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. seaangel4444 says:

      Love it, Mo! *LOL* And I have seen it for myself, and it does look THAT green!! Thanks for spreading the word, dearie!! Big hugs, Cher xo

      Like

  12. This is incredibly cool!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. seaangel4444 says:

      Hi Mary!! So good to see you! Hope you are feeling well! Yes, it is a really neat thing they do here in Chicago! And truly, the river is THAT green *well, for a day or two* Cher xo

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I am doing good! It looks like so much fun up there 🙂 have a fantastic weekend!

        Like

      2. seaangel4444 says:

        Ah, bless! Lots going on in CHItown, that’s for sure!! And to you as well my dear, thank you! Cher xo

        Liked by 1 person

  13. laura kilty says:

    That’s hilarious!! We don’t do anything so grand-scale in Ireland! My funnest Paddy’s days have always been abroad- the world seems to throw themselves into the celebrations more than we do! Thanks for sharing this, had never heard of it and now definitely want to get to it some year!x

    Liked by 2 people

    1. seaangel4444 says:

      Well I think everyone reading this will be extremely interested to know that Ireland doesn’t do what we are doing about St. Patrick’s Day! *biggest grin* Oh my dear Laura, can you hear me laughing from here? Cher xo

      Liked by 2 people

  14. crazyruthie says:

    Nice to read some good ‘current events!’ what an awesome tradition!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. seaangel4444 says:

      Ah yes, I agree with you completely!! Thank you! Cher xo

      Liked by 1 person

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