Time for a new tradition

Statement from Friends of the Chicago River about dyeing the river green.

We understand and embrace the need for celebration surrounding St. Patrick’s Day after this heartbreaking year, but we are dismayed that the City of Chicago has chosen to re-start the dyeing of the Chicago River in violation of the Clean Water Act. 

Despite years of abuse, the Chicago River is making a comeback and is full of fish, beavers and turtles including downtown. Dyeing the river sends the wrong message that it is lifeless and can be treated as a decoration for an annual holiday. 

When this tradition started the river was practically lifeless but that is no longer the case. Now is the time to create a new tradition that brings people together and does not abuse the river but honors it and all Chicagoans who celebrate St. Patrick’s Day and even those who don’t.