From McDonald's Shamrock Shakes to Krispy Kreme's green doughnuts, the fast-food and restaurant industries won't be holding back Friday when it comes to trying to cash in on what owners hope will be record spending by St. Patrick's Day celebrants.
The National Retail Federation predicts that Americans will spend more of their own "green" for this year's holiday celebrations -- $5.3 billion -- than in any of the previous 13 years since it started monitoring spending on the holiday. That's an average of $37.92 among the more than 139 million people who are expected to mark St. Patty's. That's up from last year's $35.37.
The big winners, always always, are expected to be restaurants and bars, since the day is often celebrated with corned beef and lots of alcohol. National chains are offering up everything from the traditional green beer to free doughnuts. Here's a list of some of the promotions being offered up by national chains:
- Krispy Kreme.The doughnut chain is dying its Original Glazed green for Friday only -- and spelling it "O'riginal" for the day.
- McDonald's. The beloved Shamrock Shake is joined by four others this year -- the Chocolate Shamrock Shake, the Shamrock Chocolate Chip Frappé, the Shamrock Mocha and the Shamrock Hot Chocolate.
- TGI Friday's. The chain is offering $3 green beer and $5 Jameson Irish whiskey drinks at participating restaurants.
- Dunkin' Donuts. There's will be a shamrock sprinkle doughnut and a yeast-ring doughnut frosted with chocolate icing and shamrock sprinkles.
- Baskin-Robbins. Check out the green ice cream cake, decorated with four leaf clovers, a rainbow and a pot of gold.
- Burger King. The Oreo Irish Mint Shake is the St. Patrick's take on the Classic Oreo Cookie Shake that's already being offered by the fast food giant. It was introduced in January.
- Jersey Mike's: The 1,200-plus sub shops are offering double points for their Shore Points rewards program on Friday.
- Tim Hortons: Customers will get a free mint-chip Timbit with the purchase of any beverage on Friday while supplies last. They are-- you guessed it -- green.
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