St. Patrick’s Day is always celebrated on March 17, whatever the year. At last count, 34.5 million Americans claimed an Irish heritage, no matter how distant. But the Irish have a saying: on St. Patrick’s Day everyone can be Irish. Here’s how.

Paint those fingers and toes! With colors like Tenacious Teal, Gargantuan Green Grape and Garden Party, there’s a shade of green for everyone. It’s an easy and affordable way to celebrate without the sort of commitment that comes with dying hair or skin.

Get Fido in on the festivities. Seriously, search St. Patrick’s Day dogs on Google and check out all the colorful mutts. You’ll find green mohawks, polka dots and all over color. If your furry friend wants in on the action, just purchase color hair spray at any drug store and let the fun begin.

Get crafty with St. Patrick’s Day food. Try green pancakes or green scrambled eggs (go ahead, add the ham!) for breakfast. Pack the kids an entirely green lunch – and we don’t mean all veggies. Find foods in green packaging or buy foods made green for the holiday like bread, cupcakes, cookies and yogurt. End the day with a mint chocolate chip milkshake.

Don’t forget the house. Take the opportunity in early March to decorate your door with a festive, colorful wreath. A quick internet search for ideas turns up a wreath made out of a whole lot of wine corks which have all been painted different colors of green. Another simple DIY idea is to take six inch strips of fabric with different patterns and shades of green and tie them around a circular object – foam or a hangar. Scrunch them together tight.

Dye your liquids green! The city of Chicago doesn’t mess around – since 1955, a local union has dyed the Chicago River green for St. Patrick’s Day. Ok, you might have trouble with such an undertaking in Carroll County, but those of you with hot tubs could go green with water color additives that either evaporate with the water or filter out. Don’t have a hot tub? Give the kids a giggle and drop some dye in the toilet for a few flushes.

– List compiled by Kym Byrnes and Barbara Pash

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