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St. Patrick's Day Guide 2005

It's that time of year again. Don your green bowler and brush up on all your best Celtic pickup lines, because 'tis the season when everybody's Irish. That means you'd better be able to down the drinks and sing a traditional Irish tune or two. St. Patrick doesn't want to see Houston slacking on this, his holiest of days.

Last year Playboy reported that Houston has one of the lowest Irish populations in the country, but there's no shortage of Irish pubs and other watering holes that work hard to pay their respects to the Patron Saint of Beer (wait, isn't that St. Arnold?). So gear up and get out into the city to support these fine establishments in their efforts to get you as drunk as a mad leprechaun.

THURSDAY, MARCH 17 ST. PATRICK'S DAY

Alamo Drafthouse
West Oaks Mall, 281-556-0204

Grab a cold pint of green beer, a box of Lucky Charms, a quick game of bobbing for pig trotters and a warm seat with your closest kin to watch a special St. Pat's screening of The Leprechaun. 6 p.m. $2 Guinness pints, $2 green beer pints, $4 black-and-greens.

Brian O'Neill's Traditional Irish Pub
5555 Morningside Dr., 713-522-2603, www.brianoneills.com

You can spend your entire day at one of Houston's premier Irish pubs. At 9 a.m. enjoy brunch and a traditional Irish breakfast, served until noon, featuring traditional Celtic music by the Highlanders on the patio stage. At 1:30 p.m. Murder the Stout, featuring traditional Irish drinking songs, leads a sing-along on the patio stage until 5:30 p.m. Then at 6 p.m., the Slags will take the stage. This Clear Lake band brings a large repertoire of music spanning from the '70s to present-day hits, including some traditional Irish drinking songs, so get out your dancing shoes. At 7:30 p.m., the McTeggart Irish Dancers of South Texas will perform on the patio stage. These young ladies are amazing. Make sure to come early and get a good spot. Then "around eightish" the Slags will return to the patio stage and rock out until 10 p.m., when the Trey Clark Band will take over and rock the indoor stage until closing time. There are also rumors of a sexy kilt contest. Hmmm.

Connolly's Irish Pub
215 22nd St. in Galveston, 409-762-8894

Connolly's features 27 different beers on tap, Irish whiskeys, pool tables, video golf and a variety of pub-style cuisine including shepherd's pies, chicken pies, wings and pizzas.

The Dog House Tavern
2517 Bagby, 713-520-1118

This is the place to be if you love a good Irish stout. They feature $2 stouts till close.

Fitzgerald's St. Patrick's Day Party
2706 White Oak Dr., 713-862-3838, www .fitzlive.com

Tonight enjoy drink specials and a hellafied Heights party atmosphere.

Flying Saucer Draught Emporium
705 Main, 713-228-7468

Doors open at 10 a.m. There will be beer specials all day and night, and you can drink 'em in your commemorative St. Patrick's Day Flying Saucer Glass. There'll be a guitar raffle at 10 p.m. and live music featuring the Handsomes.

F2 Lounge
306 Main, 713-229-9999

Celebrate all week long with $1.75 green beers and $2 shot specials till midnight.

The Harp
1625 Richmond, 713-528-7827

Named Houston's Best Neighborhood Bar in 2004, The Harp opens at noon today with burgers and hot dogs served from 5 p.m. on. Lisa Novak will perform on the patio starting at 7 p.m., and as always, there will be fantastic Irish dancers and bagpipers to entertain you on this holiest of days.

The Ginger Man
5607 Morningside, 713-526-2770

Today doors open at 1 p.m. Come enjoy some of the finest traditional Irish food and a wide selection of beer with music by Abbey Rode from 7:30 p.m. until 11:30 p.m.

Havana Latin Grill
818 Travis, 713-222-2254

St. Patrick's Day sizzles with a Latin twist at this hot downtown grill. Enjoy Cuban delights, and dance the night away. Their excellent $3 mojitos should help you loosen up a bit. Complimentary happy-hour appetizers from 4 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Kenneally's Irish Pub
2111 S. Shepherd, 713-630-0486

For this special event there will be a tent up in the parking lot. There will be plenty of special Irish stew, and of course they'll still serve their famous pizza. Enjoy continuous live music throughout the day with Luther & the Healers and Vince Vaughn. 3 p.m. to 2 a.m.

King Biscuit Patio Cafe
1606 White Oak Dr., 713-861-2328, www.kingbiscuitcafe.com

Live music and world-famous Irish stew. The Jameson girls will be in the house with shots of your favorite Irish whiskey, and you can expect all the shenanigans possible on Houston's most fun patio. Live music starting at 5 p.m. with John White.

Les Femmes de la Nuit, The Social Lounge & Patio Bar
3730 Washington Ave., 713-426-5585, www.thesocialinfo.com, www.fahrenheit-media.com

Join in on the fun at Houston's premier all-female DJ rendezvous happening tonight with Gracie Chavez, Diva Karina Nistal and friends like Soul Free, Jessica Partin, Candice Elliott and vocalist Shina Rae.

McGonigel's Mucky Duck St. Patrick's Day Celebration
2425 Norfolk, 713-528-5999, www.mcgonigels.com

They'll be serving great Irish food all day, including corned beef and cabbage, beef Guinness, shepherd's pie and fish and chips. The entertainment starts at noon and will feature Jiggernaut, the Rogues, the O'Maoileidigh Irish Dancers, Wyndnwyre, Tartanic, E.J. Jones, the Irish Session Players and their resident leprechaun Martin, as he leads the Celtic throngs through some of your favorite Irish tunes and even a limerick or two. Starts at 11 a.m.

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