Hope the words “busy week ahead” don’t scare you because you’re going to be hearing it for the next month. This weekend alone is jam-packed with Irish-themed events, including a visit from Derek Warfield and the Young Wolfe Tones (at the Knights of Columbus Hall in Glenside on Saturday) and the John Byrne Band, fresh from their appearance this week on The 10! Show, appearing at World Café Live on Saturday night – in the big room downstairs!
AOH Division 51 is having its pre-St. Patrick’s Day party at the Holy Name of Jesus Hall on Saturday night, with live music by Jamie and the Quietmen (why do we think they’re probably not all that quiet?).
The Second Street Irish Society is throwing a fund-raising bash for the benefit of the Philadelphia St. Patrick’s Day Parade on Saturday night. This is the second to the last fundraiser before the parade on March 13 (the last one will by at the Springfield Country Club, featuring Blackthorn).
St. Denis parish of Havetown is holding its annual St. Denis Irish Night on Saturday too, with entertainment by Misty Isle, a group that will get you up and dancing whether you like it or not.
The Broken Shillelaghs will be at McMichael’s Pub and Grill in Gloucester City, one of New Jersey’s most Irish towns, right on the river.
It gets serious on Sunday: A group of Irish community activists are gathering at Spencer Gifts at the Franklin Mills Mall to protest the derogatory Irish merchandise the store carries. (You’re welcome to join them at noon.) Expect to see more of this—we heard recently that a local supermarket agreed to pull its collection of Irish t-shirts after customers of Irish descent complained. What do the products say? Usually drinking and fighting are involved. We’re waiting to see what happens at the festivals—including the AOH festival in Wildwood—where you can see the same t-shirts and paraphernalia. Will ethnic pride triumph over capitalism? In a recession? We’ll see.
On Sunday afternoon, head to The Shanachie Pub and Restaurant in Ambler for the afternoon-long Sunday Irish Radio Shows benefit, featuring many great local musicians (including the aforementioned John Byrne), raffle prizes and auction items (and the stand-up auctioneering comedy routine of Publican Gerry Timlin).
If you’re in Lehigh County, Jack Callaghan’s Ale House on Tilgman Street is the headquarters for the Allentown St. Patrick’s Day parade fundraiser that features a Chinese auction, a DJ, and Jello shots (hey, sign me up).
Like to play the flute or tin whistle? There’s a free workshop at West Chester University’s Phillips Autograph Library by one of our favorite librarians and musicians Dennis Gormley. He’ll have a limited number of tin whistles for sale if you’ve been thinking of taking it up. Follow it up with am Irish session with Dennis and his wife, Kathy DeAngelo (a harper), at Kildare’s Irish Pub in West Chester.
On Tuesday, the Celtic folk group DeDannan, with founding members Alec Finn and Johnny “Ringo” Mcdonagh will be on stage at the Grand Opera House in Wilmington with special guest Eleanor Shanley. Mention Green Willow for a ticket discount—this is a Green Willow production.
We’re sorry we won’t be getting to those one – a fundraiser for the York St. Patrick’s Day parade for which a dozen York restaurants are creating a menu item containing Guinness. It’s called “There’s Guinness In It,” and we think it’s a great idea! This happens next Friday, March 4.
In Bucks County, the Bucks County St. Patrick’s Day group is honoring its grand marshal, John T. Galloway, at the Irish Ball at Kings Caterers in Bristol on Friday night, March 4.
That same night: Catch Solas in concert at the Sellersville Theatre or the play, “Brendan,” by Ronan Noone, about an Irish immigrant in Boston who is visited by the ghost of his mammy, at McCoole’s Arts and Events Place in Quakertown.
On stage all week is The Lieutenant of Inishmore at the Plays and Players Theatre in Philadelphia.
There’s loads going on next week, including Gael Scoil—and immersion weekend in Irish—in Lawrenceville, NJ, the Erin Express has a warm-up voyage, Queen of Peace Parish in Ardsley is holding its annual Irish night, Celtic Kilt night kicks off at the Temperance House in Newtown, the Gloucester County AOH is throwing its St. Paddy’s Party, and Blackthorn is rocking it for the Philly parade.
Plenty more where that came from—on our calendar, as well as details on all these events.