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3 Unique Ways to Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with your Teen

3 Unique Ways to Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with your Teen

St. Patrick’s Day is around the corner! This holiday, centered around the patron saint of Ireland, has many forms of celebration. Chicago turns their river green and New York City has a huge parade. Some restaurants will even serve corned beef, cabbage and green colored food for the day.

This holiday also comes with a lot of green outfits and drinking. In 2018 individuals spent an estimated $245 million on beer alone. And according to NHTSA in the four years between 2006-2010, 700 people were killed in drunk driving crashes over St. Patrick’s Day weekend.

These facts can make it seem difficult for a family to join in the celebration, but we have three ways you can safely celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with your teen:

  1. Make your own Irish meal

Corned beef and cabbage have been a staple as Americans have celebrated St. Patrick’s Day. Take a few hours with your teen and make this delicious dinner to help celebrate.

While you’re cooking, reconnect with your teen. Ask about the new things going on in school or about what their friends are up to. Remind your teen that you’re always there for them and that you support them. Taking these moments to share a conversation with your teen can create trust. This can help make your teen more comfortable coming to you when they need help.

  1. Let your teen host a St. Patrick’s Day party

If your teen is really hoping to be with their friends to celebrate, help them throw their own party in your home. This can be a great way for them to don their green and hang out with their friends, without having to leave home.

Help your teen create a menu of green colored foods and organize a contest for the best green outfit. Plan activities and games for guests that revolve around shamrocks and leprechauns. You may even suggest including a throwback feature film like the 2001 Disney classic, Luck of the Irish.

Make sure as you prepare, that your teen knows that this party is alcohol-free and that you’ll be supervising. The day of, ensure that your teen doesn’t have access to a liquor cabinet and make sure guests don’t have a way to sneak in alcohol. It can also beneficial for you to be active with the party. Instead of staying out of the basement or in another room, check in every now and again.

By doing these things, you’ll ensure that all the guests in your home are safe and that no teens have access to alcohol. This will keep them safe at the party and when they drive home.

  1. Grab some Shamrock Shakes for dessert

If you and your teen need a break after all the festivities, Shamrock Shakes are a great way to end the holiday!

These minty shakes make their appearance at McDonald’s for a limited time each spring. A mixture of vanilla ice cream, their Shamrock Shake syrup and whipped cream, these shakes are a great green treat. You can find the Shamrock Shake at a McDonald’s near you using the Shamrock Shake Finder.

Get shakes with your teen and find a quiet spot to talk. Discuss with your teen some of the hopes that you have for their future. Listen to what they want to accomplish and hear out the dreams they have. Let them know some of your expectations for their future, behavior and choices.

This opportunity to talk can be the first of many great conversations. It’s a great way to open your teen up to talking about more serious topics, such as choices, peer pressure, drunk driving, and underage drinking.

Parents have the most important voice in the life of a teenager. Taking time now to begin conversations with your teen can be incredibly impactful. What may just seem like a conversation over Shamrock Shakes, may empower your teenager to make safe choices in the future.

Kaitlyn Inman
kaitlyn@missourisafeandsober.com
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