St. Patrick's Day party set for San Diego's Gaslamp District

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - The countdown has begun for St. Patrick's Day in San Diego. The Gaslamp District is heavily bedazzled with sparkly green decorations. Many people said they are ready to party.

Niamh Thornton is a 24 year old Irish student, now living in San Diego. 

“Niamh is pronounced like “Christmas Eve,” but with an “N” like “Neev”… It’s Irish,” Thornton said.

She has been working at the Field Irish Pub in the Gaslamp District since last June.

"It's called an Irish Mule… It's lovely,” she said, pointing at a popular drink at the pub.

The Irish native was getting ready for a 10-hour shift at the Field Saturday. 

"It's going to be crazy, I'd say,” Thornton said. 

Crazy may be an understatement.

Saturday, many blocks downtown will be closed from sunrise to sunset-- for the morning Shamrock Run, the daytime parade, and shamROCK, the evening concert. 

Plus, many will be staring at the television screens, screaming for their favorite Irish teams. 

“England vs. Ireland in the rugby,” she said. ”And six nations. That’s insane. So this place is going to be packed.”

But some people just could not wait to pre-party. Many people we saw in Downtown were showcasing their green accessories and outfits. Some were fully dressed up as lucky leprechauns. 

Kristin Ventura was showing off her Irish American pride with her co-workers at the Field Irish Pub. 

She said it is the one day of the year that anyone can be an honorary Irishman.

"Everyone is a little bit Irish,” Ventura said. “Deep down inside, there is that little spunk in you."

Thornton said that spunk comes from St. Patrick himself, who legend said, saved the island from a slithery invasion.

"He got rid of snakes in Ireland,” Thornton said. “So that's why there are no snakes in Ireland."

That was the start of the St. Patrick’s Day celebration for everyone — even for those on the other side of the planet. But for Thornton, that will have to have to wait until the end of her shift Saturday.

“Then I'm going to go out and have fun,” Thornton laughed. 

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