This is one seriously Irish weekend. Here are your choices:
Take a bag of groceries to Washington Savings in Philadelphia and the Hibernian Hunger Project—which will put the food to good use feeding the needy—will allow you to shred one bag of your most important papers, the ones you don’t want to fall into the wrong hands.
The hot local group, Burning Bridget Cleary, are holding workshops for the Philadelphia Folksong Society in Philadelphia on Satuday. You can go and still make it in time to hear Irish tenor Daniel O’Donnell—a Donegal man—in concert at the Academy of Music.
At the Irish Center, the first of two major events: The Philadelphia Ceili Group Fundraiser on Saturday, which features some of the area’s sterling Irish traditional musicians and will raise money for the group’s annual Traditional Irish Music Festival in September.
On Sunday, 11 Delaware Valley Irish-born or Irish-American women will be honored with the first Inspirational Irish Women awards. The cocktail reception will launch an art exhibit by abstract impressionist Pat Gallagher, former of Ardmore an now living in Louisville, KY, whose work is owned by President Barack Obama, Irish Ambassador Michael Collins, and former 76ers coach Larry Brown. Proceeds from the event will benefit the Irish Center and Project H.O.M.E., a program to end homelessness founded by one of the award winners, Sister Mary Scullion.
Sunday also kicks of the biannual fundraiser for the Sunday Irish Radio Shows on WTMR 800-AM. Tune in at 11 for the Vince Gallagher Irish Radio Hour followed by “Come West Along the Road” with Marianne MacDonald and call in a pledge to keep Irish music on the air.
Busy day, Sunday. On Sunday morning, AOH Div. 39 will join in an international day of remembrance for An Gorta Mor, the Great Hunger, with a Mass and breakfast afterwards. The Philadelphia Shamrocks hurling team will meet the Washington, DC, Gaels on the field at Cardinal Dougherty High School on N. Second Street in Philadelphia (not far from Cheltenham). The Bucks County Irish Center Annual Festival is being held at Park Polanka in Bensalem, with music , dancing, and food. And to top off the day, the legendary Kevin Burke and Cal Scott will bring their virtuoso sound to the Coatesville Cultural Center.
Support your local Irish immigrant by attending the rally for immigration reform at the National Constitution Center in Philadelphia. Representatives from the Irish Immigration Center of Philadelphia will be there. Last time they brought step dancers—the Irish really know how to demonstrate.
And get ready for a fabulous concert next weekend at the Irish Center. Part of the proceeds from the show, with topflight groups The Elders and Searson, will go to support the Philadelphia St. Patrick’s Day Parade.