Ok, so true to my word, I found out the glory of Saint Patrick.
He was the patron saint and national apostle of Ireland who is credited with bringing Christianity to Ireland.
What a nice fellow!
He is also known for chasing all the snakes out of Ireland. Now really, as Ireland is an island that was seperated from the continent during the Ice Age, chances of snakes ever exisiting on the island is pretty slim (much like New Zealand--love that place!) Hence, the 'snakes' are merely a representation of pagan folk and beliefs, as many pagan cultures worshipped symbols of snakes. So....with conforming many pagans to Christianity, he got rid of the snakes.
And as for March 17, this is the day that is believed that he died. The Irish celebrate the good deeds he performed through religious observance and jovial celebration. This has been turned into green beer.
God Bless the Irish (well....and everyone else too!!)
PS...I found all this on www.st-patricks-day.com. It's actually a pretty cool site, full of neat info! :)