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The Hillsborough River to turn green as Tampa's River O’ Green Festival returns to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day

The annual River O' Green Fest is returning to downtown Tampa with lots of Irish fare and beer, plus the dyeing of the Hillsborough River to a shade of Kelly green!

Tampa's River O’ Green Festival

River O’ Green Fest is an annual, free event to kick off the St. Patrick’s Day holiday in Tampa, with thousands of revelers watching as the Hillsborough River is transformed into a bright shade of green.

This day of festive fun returns to Tampa's Downtown on Saturday, March 16, 2024 at the beautiful Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park.

The free event kicks off at 11 am with the Hillsborough River transformed into a bright shade of green for the St. Patrick's Day holiday. The river provides a perfect backdrop to the Irish-themed celebration that includes live entertainment, fun and games for everyone, plus lots of kids activities, Irish fare and beer!

Tampa's River O’ Green Festival

The River O’Green Fest is organized by Tampa’s Downtown Partnership with the City of Tampa and takes place along Tampa's Riverwalk.

Mayor Jane Castor commented ahead of this years fun, “Seeing our Hillsborough River turn emerald green in celebration of St. Patrick’s Day is a great reminder of the excitement and fun that Tampa has to offer,” she continued, “I know how much I look forward to this annual tradition and the opportunity it brings to come together and celebrate all that makes our city great.” 

Tampa's River O’ Green Festival

If you are curious about the dye and its impact on the environment, organisers say that the dye used to turn the Hillsborough River green is completely safe.

The dye is completely safe for the environment, non-toxic, biodegradable, meets all EPA standards and is certified for use by NSF Std 60.  In fact, it’s the same dye often used in water systems to trace the flow of drinking water, and is the same dye used in food and in eye surgery to trace blood vessels.

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Tampa's River O’ Green Festival

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Emma Walton News Producer

Emma Walton

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