Hillsborough River dyed green for St. Patrick’s Day 


Ava Satterfield

The City of Tampa celebrates St. Patrick’s Day by dyeing the Hillsborough River bright green. On Sunday, March 13 the River O’ Green Fest was held downtown.

The River O’ Green Fest returned to Tampa on Sunday, March 13 after a two-year COVID hiatus. People lined the Tampa Riverwalk to watch the Hillsborough River being dyed bright green and partake in the live music, food and fun family activities.

A single boat dyed the entire river green. The City of Tampa clarified all concerns that the dye could harm the environment.

“[The dye] is safe for the environment, nontoxic, biodegradable, meets all EPA standards and is certified for use by the National Sanitation Foundation Standard 60,” the city told 10 Tampa Bay. “In fact, it’s the same dye often used in water systems to trace the flow of drinking water, in eye surgeries to trace blood vessels and in food.” 

Originally set to take place on Saturday, the event was pushed back to Sunday due to windy weather. Sunday was chilly with a high of 69 degrees, yet the festival attracted a crowd. Mayor Jane Castor attended, sporting shamrock jeans.

“I loved seeing our community come together for the 2022 River O’ Green Fest-Tampa’s iconic St. Paddys tradition,” she posted on Instagram. “The Irish spirit lives on in @cityoftampa! Best city in the world!”