The Swedish-Irish Society

Strengthening our cultural bonds – and having fun while we do it!

St Patrick’s Day

In almost every town in Ireland, the national day, St Patrick’s Day (17th March), is celebrated with a parade. Thanks to a long history of significant Irish emigration, a good deal of the world’s cities now also celebrate this. In some places you go to only watch the parade, but in Sweden you get to be the parade! The Stockholm parade takes place on the weekend closest to the 17th. Come join in as we walk through Stockholm putting a smile on people’s faces!

2016 parade (c) Adrià Cruz

The 2018 Stockholm parade – Saturday 17th March

This year’s parade will take place on Saturday the 17th March 2018 (12.00-14.30)

  • The parade is organised every year completely by volunteers, and as it has grown to an event that attracts about 1,000 people, we need all the help we can get! Got a little bit of time and energy to spare? Please get in touch at No special skills are needed for the majority of tasks. In return you’ll meet some nice people and be part of something special.
  • There is one thing you can definitely do to help: Renew your membership (or join up)! This is really important as without a strong society we cannot continue to organise the parade. It’s also a very practical way to show your appreciation. 🙂 Read how you can renew/join.

Photos from 2016

Photos above and below: 2016 parade (c) Adrià Cruz

Practical information

(Use Facebook? Follow our event for updates.)

We will gather from 12.00 at Kungsträdgården (close to the stage). Activities for children and adults. Decorate your very own snake at the “Mek a snek”-station, try some Irish dancing or learn some words in Irish. The Swedish Irish Society will provide face-painting and hand out balloons (first come first served!). You might meet some old friends or make some new ones. Enter our costume competition. Find out more about the Society and what we do. Pick up some St Patrick’s Day-themed bits and pieces to finish off outfits (hats, flags etc)…


Pre-parade gathering at Humlegården 2015. Photo credit: Michael Hughes

At 13.00 the parade will depart. We will walk to Gamla stan (Kornhamnstorg). St Patrick leads the always impressive Stockholm Pipe Band, majestic wolfhounds, a giant snake (to symbolise the ones St Patrick banished from Ireland, according to legend), a rainbow leading to a pot of gold (associated with the mythical Irish creatures, leprechauns), and hundreds of happy people! Groups such as Spuds and Sill drama group and the Stockholm Gaels Gaelic football club participate under their banners. Other groups, such as Paddies with Prams, Proud Paddies, Paddies the Builders etc are also all welcome! Gather family and friends and join in. Your imagination is the limit!

Please note

  1. Stewards are there for everyone’s safety. Follow their instructions.
  2. Many dogs participate in this parade and we ask you therefore to be considerate and to not burst balloons near the dogs as it can scare them.


On arrival at Kornhamnstorg in Gamla stan there will be a celebration of Irish music and dance between 13.30 and 14.15 approximately.


Fada – Kieran “Loughy” O’Loughlin ( and Brian Friel.
The Stockholm Set Dancers – led by Eoin Sheedy
Singer Ciara Moran
The “Wirströms Session Players”

Costume Competition


Winner of the Best Dressed (Individual) 2015. Photo credit: Katriina Mäkinen

We will have prizes for the Best Dressed Family/Pimped-up Pram and for the Best Dressed Individual/Pair so get working on your outfit!



Photography competition

1. Best on the day: Enter this by tagging your best picture with #sweireparade and uploading it to Instagram! We will award a prize on the day.

2. Scavenger hunt! Find as many of these things as you can and send in your photos to us. Read the instructions carefully! We will anounce the winner of this prize in about 10 days. 2018 Photo competition!

Special thanks to sponsors of the 2018 parade

Kirby Engineering and Construction

Kirby is delighted to sponsor the Stockholm St Patrick’s Day Parade.
Kirby, a leading mechanical and electrical engineering contractor, has recently expanded its international operations to include the new geographical area of Sweden.
Kirby provides full mechanical and electrical contracting services as well as specialist high voltage (HV) and medium voltage (MV) design and construction services across Ireland, the UK, and Northern Europe. Kirby operates in a number of sectors including Data Centres, Substations and Renewables, Life Sciences and Industrial Manufacturing. The company, with a turnover of €165m, was founded in 1964, and currently directly employs over 700 highly-skilled professionals.
The company is currently working on a number of high-profile projects across Sweden.



O’Dwyers Goldsmith (Liljeholmen, Stockholm)

Michael ODwyer Goldsmith. Originally from Ireland and now based in Liljeholmen, Stockholm. If you’re in the market for anything remotely sparkling, be sure and check them out: “Michael ODwyer Goldsmiths love handcrafting the perfect piece of jewellery for you. We are not only a business, for us jewellery making is a passion. We love to see our customers happy and smiling when they leave us and look forward to seeing them when they return.”

Silverback Staffing Ltd

On St Patrick’s Day we claim all of the Patriks in Sweden as honorory Irish.
SilverBack is very proud to have gotten to know so many clients, contacts, suppliers and friends in Sweden.
From our base in Dublin, Ireland we supply many of the leading Swedish installation and construction contractors with skilled, English-speaking trades workers.

The Embassy of Ireland

The Government of Ireland’s Emigrant Support Programme

Jump w Ireland.com_white background


Prizes kindly donated by:


The English Bookshop (Stockholm & Uppsala)

Little Britain. Food, drinks and gifts (Gamla stan)

The Liffey Bar (Gamla Stan)

Whitmans deli

Tempel Brygghus (Uppsala)

Milners Fish and Chips (Sockenplan)

Galways (Stockholm)

Parade route:

Coming soon


Weather forecast for the next few days:

More information about some of our sponsors:

logo-latest“As a child growing up in Ireland I was very close to nature. I would love when summer came around and I got to watch the bees buzzing amongst the intense colours of the flowers. From these memories come strongly coloured stones, dancing diamonds and attention to detail.

From the first day I began working with jewellery I have been fascinated by gemstones. Studying with the Gemological association of Great Britain allowed me to explore the world of coloured stones in great depth.

In the early days of my learning, an experienced gemologist told me that the stones should do more than look pretty, they should talk to you. Our stones talk, dance and sparkle. We believe that a piece of jewellery should do more than just fit your hand. It should suit your personality too.” Michael O’Dwyer Goldsmith. Every piece tells a story.

Jump w Ireland.com_white backgroundTourism Ireland provides information on Ireland as a holiday destination. Check out great holiday ideas and deals on



The parade is organised annually by volunteers from the Swedish Irish Society in collaboration with the Irish Embassy in Sweden and with generous sponsorship from businesses in the community.

Who was St Patrick?

St Patrick is credited with bringing Christianity to Ireland. He must have had the gift of the gab (as we say about persuasive people who can spin a good tale) as the conversion happened remarkably quickly and peacefully. He is also credited with banishing snakes from Ireland, for which we are eternally grateful. 🙂