How to Be Irish in Philly

How To Be Irish in Philly This Week

Tomorrow morning at 4:15, a group of runners and walkers will brave the rain, the chill, and the dark to do a 5K course, all to raise money for an Irish organization that helps those who are considering suicide.

The “Darkness Into Light” 5K will be duplicated around the world, from Canada to Ireland to Australia, anywhere Ireland’s diaspora live. It’s a major fundraiser for Pieta House, which offers free counseling for those in the depths of despair. Pieta House opened its first North American branch last August in New York. Local supporters hope to open a Pieta House in the Philadelphia area. Read more about it here.

The event start at Lloyd Hall on Kelly Drive, along the Schuykill River, and will end on the Art Museum steps at the head of the Benjamin Franklin Parkway. Latecomers are welcome.

A meal will follow at Tir na nOg at 16th and Arch Streets. Along with raising money, Pieta House is focused on raising awareness of the suicide epidemic, which is on the rise in the US and in Ireland. As part of that, Donegal journalist and poet, Liam Porter, will be at the Irish Immigration Center on Monday night, reading from and signing his book, “Dance in the Rain,” which includes many of the more than 365 poems he wrote to bring himself out of his own dark night of the soul, after losing his newspaper job in Ireland’s recession.  The wine and cheese reception will start at 8 PM at the Immigration Center, 7 S. Cedar Road, in Upper Darby.

If you haven’t already booked a place to take your Mom on Mother’s Day on Sunday, consider the Tyrone Society’s annual Mother’s Day Dinner at the Irish Center in Mt. Airy.

On Wednesday, it’s Irish Heritage Night with the Philadelphia Union at the Talen Energy Stadium (formerly PPL Park) in Chester. The Union will face off against the Los Angeles Galaxy and while there will be soccer inside the stadium, outside you can see a demonstration of youth Gaelic football and hurling, as well as listen to pipers and watch Irish dancers. The event is a fundraiser for the Irish Immigration Center, with $10 from every ticket sold going to the Center.

Next Friday, “Open the Door for Three,” an Irish traditional group, will be performing at a house concert in Lansdale. There are workshops Friday afternoon between 4-5:30 PM. Check out the details on our calendar. You must reserve a spot—this is someone’s livingroom.

And get your tickets this week for next Saturday’s Philadelphia Fleadh. You’ll save $10 and get to hear some of Philly’s finest Celtic bands, including Jamison Celtic Rock, the John Byrne Band, The Paul Moore Band, No Irish Need Apply, the Bogside Rogues, along with the Kilmaine Saints, Raymond Coleman, and the Next Generation, a group of youngsters keeping Irish trad alive—among others. There will also be a feis (that’s a dance competition) and a ceili (set and ceili-style dancing). There’s also a kids’ zone with bounce houses, a zip line, and much more, to keep the little ones occupied. It’s held at the Cherokee Day Camp—a perfect spot for a festival—in Bensalem. See the calendar for more information.

There are going to be some major changes to, probably starting next week. You’ll be hearing all about it. You know, next week. Or earlier on Facebook.

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