Fountain Hills to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with music, food and a green fountain

Mar 15, 2024, 4:05 AM | Updated: 8:02 am

Irish Fountain Fest to fill Fountain Hills with music, food and fun...

This weekend will mark the 45th year the Greening of the Fountain will take place. (Photos courtesy of Experience Fountain Hills)

(Photos courtesy of Experience Fountain Hills)

PHOENIX — Planning a trip to Fountain Hills this weekend? Wear some green. The Irish Fountain Fest is set to take place this Saturday.

The family-friendly event will feature Irish musical performances, food trucks and a “greening of the fountain.”

That’s when officials transform the city’s iconic water spray into an emerald green. Bright green sprays will fly into the air at both noon and 4 p.m. on Saturday.

The Irish Fountain Fest opens at 11 a.m. A pipe and drum band will perform, along with a spirit bank, and a Celtic rock band. Various Irish folk dancers will also show off for visitors.

Additionally, the family-friendly event will have a kid’s zone. There’s a lot for parents, too, like the Crescent Crown Beer Garden.

The event at Fountain Park near Saguaro Boulevard and Panorama Drive will start at 11 a.m. and end at 5 p.m. Admission is free.

Why will the Irish Fountain Fest dye the water green this weekend?

The city will dye its iconic fountain green on both Saturday and Sunday.

Those who can’t make it to the Irish Fountain Fest can drive down on Sunday to see the fountain spray green at noon. Green light will also bathe the fountain when the sun sets.

The dyeing event takes place each St. Patrick’s Day — and it dates all the way back to 1978.

It all started when a man celebrated the holiday with a wild stunt: bringing a horse into a tavern. People at the bar then made a $250 bet to see who could top the stunt.

The next year, a large crowd watched as the iconic fountain spewed forth emerald green waters. This year, the city will revive the tradition for the 45th time.

What to expect from the Greening of the Fountain event

It takes 55 gallons of green coloring to change the fountain’s color, the city said. Officials will inject the color into the stream so visitors can watch the tone change.

The dye doesn’t cause any harm to the water, officials said. That means the various wildlife that benefit from the surrounding park won’t be hurt by the coloring.

The fountain, which is the fourth tallest in the world, was built in 1980 in Switzerland. Three pumps push its waters as high as 560 feet. It runs every day of the week and every hour for 15 minutes from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., the city announcement said.

Those who can’t make it to this year’s Greening of the Fountain event can view it on a webcam.

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Fountain Hills to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with music, food and a green fountain