Columns, How to Be Irish in Philly

How to Be Irish in Philly This Week

The Mairead Farrells Ladies Gaelic Athletic Club: Help send them to the nationals! They earned it.

The Mairead Farrells Ladies Gaelic Athletic Club: Help send them to the nationals! They earned it.

Two big fundraisers this weekend, one for the Philly St. Patrick’s Day parade and the other for the Mairead Farrells Ladies Gaelic Athletic Club. (They’re going to the finals in Chicago!)

Raising money may be a year-long event for the parade, which has seen its costs rise over the last two years as the city backed away from providing services gratis as it has in the past. The event takes place on Sunay at Keenan’s Irish Pub in N. Wildwood, NJ (Far Northeast Philly or, as we like to think of it, Port Richmond by the Sea). For $30 you get beer, wine, music and fine—probably less than you pay when you’re in Wildwood for Irish Weekend.

Also on Sunday, it’s a beef-and-beer fundraiser at Cawley’s Irish Pub in Upper Darby to raise money for the women footballers who have been roughin’ up the competition on Sundays on the fields of Cardinal Dougherty High School in Philly. We expect they’ll do the same when they travel to the Midwest for the GAA nationals. You go, girls! Their coach, Angela Mohan, is a force to be reckoned with.

The Irish Pub’s annual Tour de Shore bike race to Atlantic City flicks up its kickstand at 7 AM Sunday at the pub in Philly and ends hours later at the Jersey Shore, this year raising bucks for the Philly FOP Survivors Fund, the Police Athletic League and the Daniel Faulkner Educational Grant Fund.

On Tuesday, listen to the amazing voice of Galway singer-songwriter Don Stiffe who is making his first Philadelphia appearance at the Irish Center, accompanied by fellow Gallwegian (is that what people from Galway are called?), Gabriel Donohue.

On Wednesday, Chestnut Hill’s Pastorius Park is the bucolic setting for a free concert by the Belfast group, McPeake.

Two members of the singing group, Sephira, who tour with sensations, Celtic Thunder will be conducting music workshops for kids on Wednesday at the Medford United Methodist Church in Medford, NJ.

On Wednesday at lunch time, Dublin-born singer-songwriter John Byrne will be serenading the regular Wednesday lunch group–and whoever else drops in—at the Irish Immigration Center at 7 Cedar Lane in Upper Darby. It’s a small place to call ahead to let them know you’re coming.

On Friday, a real treat: a house concert featuring musicians from various genres who will be creating a Celtic-Latin fusion: Cuban/Haitian-American drummer and bodhran maker Albert Alfonso; Philly Irish fiddler-guitarist John Brennan and singer-fiddler Deb Shebish who has performed with both the Irish Tenors and Ray Charles, will be playing for the Spring Hill House Concert series in Lansdale. Because it’s a house concert, it will be very intimate—and that means you need to make reservations.

Friday also kicks off the Clover Fire Company’s 23rd annual Irish Weekend in Pottsville, where, reportedly, the band Blackthorn got its start. Admission is free on Friday night and only $4 for adults the other two days. Kids under 18 are free all weekend. Talk about your cheap thrills.

As always, check the calendar for dates, times, and maps.

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