How to Be Irish in Philly

How to Be Irish in Philly This Week

Welcome to a less frantic—well, less frantic than St. Patrick’s Week—but still culturally enriching, HTBI.

Let’s start with Saturday—which is plenty busy enough.

We wrote about this last week, but it bears repeating: The Irish Memorial is sponsoring “Hunger on Trial,” a mock trial with British landlords, the Anglican Church, the British government and Irish tenant farmers accused for their purported role in An Gorta Mór (Ireland’s Great Hunger).

The mock trial takes place Saturday morning, starting at 10:30, in Philadelphia City Hall, Courtroom 653, President Judge Patrick Dugan presiding.

The general public is invited to attend, as well as take part in the trial, which will begin with a brief overview of An Gorta Mór. Prosecutors and defense attorneys—they’re the real deal—will be introduced, a jury will be chosen, and everyone in attendance will be randomly selected into one of the four indicted groups.

It’s all an involving educational experience. Check it out.

There’s much more to do later on Saturday. Paul Byrom, he of Celtic Thunder, will take the stage at the Commodore John Barry Arts & Cultural Center—otherwise known as the Irish Center—at 7 p.m. This promises to be a pretty great show. Byrom all by himself is thunderous enough. Sneak preview of some of the tunes he’ll be singing: “My Land,” “Danny Boy,” “You Raise Me Up” and songs from Broadway, such as “Bring Him Home,” “Stars,” “I Won’t Send Roses” and “You’ll Never Walk Alone.” Think of it as a perfect ending to St. Patrick’s Month.

Tickets here. The Irish Center is at 6815 Emlen Street in Mount Airy.

Also Saturday, not one but twoBag Bingo fund-raisers.

The first benefits Dennis Kelly Ancient Order of Hibernians charities. It takes place at Sacred Heart Everett Hall, 109 North Manoa Road, in Havertown. It costs $35 for 11 cards. Raffle baskets and a 50/50. BYO food and drinks. For details: Doors open at 6:30 p.m., and games start at 7:30.

Another Bag Bingo will be held for the benefit of the Shamrocks Youth Organization at the Philadelphia Protestant Home, 6401 Martins Mill Road in Northeast Philly. Doors open at 7 p.m., games start at 8. As with the previous, there’s an opportunity to win designer bags, and there will be raffles. Tickets available in advance for $30, and $35 at the door. Contact any member of the Shamrocks to purchase tickets. This event is also BYOB.

Finally, Paddy Whacks Welsh will host what promises to be a terrific music Gathering with C.J. Mills, Seamus McGroary and Joe Kirschen. The show starts at 3 p.m. Paddy Whacks Welsh is at 9241 Roosevelt Boulevard—tucked away in a little shopping center near the intersection—in Northeast Philadelphia.

On Sunday, the phenomenal Irish folk singer Gerry Timlin will be on stage at Act II Playhouse, 56 East Butler Avenue in Ambler. The show starts at 7 p.m. Act II, in case you’ve never been there, is a cozy little venue. There really aren’t any bad seats. Good thing, because you’ll want to see and hear Gerry, who’s a great story-teller as well as talented musician with a deep repertoire.

On Monday, April 1, the Irish Immigration Center will host a free immigration legal clinic at 3 p.m. The Center is at 7 South Cedar Lane in Upper Darby. Information here.

On Thursday, April 4, there’s a concert you really won’t want to miss: Celtic Woman in concert at the Academy of Music, 240 South Broad Street in Center City. A great, world-renowned act in one of Philadelphia’s truly great venues. The show starts at 7:30 p.m. Here’s the ticket web link. This is the ensemble’s new “Ancient Land” show, part of the 2019 world tour. In case you missed it, we recently interviewed Celtic Woman violinist Tara McNeill as part of our podcast series. Give it a listen.

Friday at 6 p.m., the Notre Dame Ladies Gaelic Football Club is hosting a Meet and Greet at Sona Pub & Kitchen, 4417 Main Street in Manayunk. Meet current players and learn all about the game of Gaelic football. Potential new players will receive a ticket for a free drink and a chance to win a door prize.

That’s it for this packed little week.

See you next time around.

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