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The week to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day is upon us. Are you going to celebrate, or have you already started?

Judging from today’s Republican-Herald e-poll results, not many have begun celebrating the saint’s feast day yet. Of the 482 who responded to the poll online Sunday, 16 percent have started festivities while 84 percent have not.

As members of the County Schuylkill Ceili Dancers, you could say that my daughter and I have started. Our small group dances at nursing homes and assisted living facilities and, on some occasions, for organizations like historical societies and at other functions. Last week, we performed dances at Golden Living Center-York Terrace in Pottsville. The group gets busy every March with St. Patrick’s Day, but we dance year-round.

The dancers are as young as 6 and as old as 70-plus. At this point, my daughter is the youngest dancer. It’s a nice activity that we enjoy together, and Amber does quite well. When we danced at Orwigsburg Center a few months back, she ended doing some of the dances for the first time that night. She kept up quite well.

I always figured that Amber would eventually be a ceili dancer; after all, I danced ceili up until my 36th week of my pregnancy, when I had take it easy due to pregnancy induced hypertension.

We usually participate in the Pottsville St. Patrick’s Day parade, but of course we couldn’t this year due to its cancellation. Here’s hoping for sunnier skies this weekend for Girardville’s annual bash!

However you decide to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day, be sure to celebrate safely. And while you’re at it, take in a bit of Irish culture while you’re at it, whether it’s making and enjoying Irish potatoes (those sweet treats covered in cinnamon), Irish stew for supper or finding out a little more about St. Patrick or the Emerald Isle itself.

An early  Happy St. Patrick’s Day to all! Have a great week!