St. Patrick’s Day has passed, the green and white confetti has been swept from the streets, and the Irish and non-Irish alike have returned to their regular routines. If you think that you’ll have to wait another year to enjoy the sights and sounds of Irish culture, think again! The summer is chock full of Irish feises and festivals all across the United States.
Some of this year’s major summer festivals include:
Milwaukee Irish Fest: The Premier Irish Experience, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, August 19-22, – This exciting festival hosts thousands of people for a three-day celebration that aims to “promote and celebrate all aspects of Irish culture, and to instill in future generations an appreciation of Irish heritage.” Activities include live entertainment, music lessons, crafts and Irish goods, with headliner Gaelic Storm, a popular and energetic Celtic band sure to get the crowd going! Irishfest.com
Irish American Heritage Festival, Chicago Illinois, July 9-11 – Bring the family to Chi-Town and hear live Irish and American music on five stages at the 25th annual festival. This event will also feature a mashed-potato eating contest, a traditional matchmaking event, dancers, and kid-friendly arts and crafts, among others. irishfestchicago.com
Newport Waterfront Irish Festival, Newport, Rhode Island, September 4-6 – Spend a sunny weekend on the waterfront with non-stop Irish entertainment including, Irish step-dance, food, crafts, and Irish music. From kid-friendly activities to comedy there will be something for every member in your family! https://www.newportwaterfrontevents.com/
Hunter Mountain International Celtic Festival, Hunter Mountain, New York, August 21-22 – Snowy ski slops turn into vibrant picnic grounds, as the Irish invade this popular ski resort. Entertainment includes Irish traditional and contemporary bands, the Ulster County AOH Pipe and Drums, Irish dancers, traditional food, and handmade crafts. https://www.huntermtn.com/huntermtn/festivals/summer-festivals-celtic.aspx
Great Lakes Irish Music Festival, Comstack Park, Michigan, August 7 – Sponsored by Tullamore Dew, this festival plays tribute to the grand tradition of Irish music. Performers this year include Young Dubliners, The Screaming Orphans, Teada, Stephen’s Gree, Fenian’s Players, and Qunn’s Irish Dancers.
Gaelic Athletic Association of Greater New York, Gaelic Park, Bronx, New York, April to October – If you’re more of a sports enthusiast than music aficionado, take the subway to New York City’s very own Gaelic Park. Every week, local Irish American teams battle for the chance to compete in the finals. Many Irish teams also fly over to play against local teams. With hurling, camogie, and Gaelic football being played at multiple levels and age groups, there’s sure to be a game for everyone. https://www.ny-gaa.org/
To find an Irish festival near you, please contact your local newspaper, AOH, or simply perform an internet search. So dust off your dancing shoes, tin whistle, and hurling stick, and plan a weekend of Irish pride for the whole family! Slainte, and Happy Summer!