Summer’s here and the time is right for Irish and Celtic events of all kinds.
We’ll start with what is shaping up to be a very busy Saturday.
Kilt Fest, a celebration of all things Celtic, debuts at the Trifecta Sporting Club, 4666 East Bristol Road in Feasterville, Bucks County. It’s the first time on the Pennsylvania side of the Delaware for this event, which runs from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Strap your kilt on for the Kilted Fun Run, which starts the day (10 a.m. to 11 a.m.). Kilts are mandatory for this one, though for nothing else during the day.
Gaelic sports continue the festival at noon, running through 5 p.m., with kids’ Highland games from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. Irish dance goes from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. And there’s music, including na Bodach and the Kilted Rogues, both of which combine Scottish and Irish elements, together with entertainers like C.J. Mills and Seamus McGroary. Also: food and vendors throughout the grounds.
Sounds like a great time.
There’s a screening of “Unquiet Graves: Uncovering Britain’s Secret War in Ireland” at the MacSwiney Club, 510 Greenwood Avenue in Jenkintown Borough, Montgomery County. The screening starts at 3 p.m.
Check out “Tribute of Wild Tears: A Celebration of W.B. Yeats/Celt Twilight” at The Spiral Bookcase, 112 Cotton Street in Philadelphia., starting at 7 p.m. It’s billed as an “evening of poetry, live music, folklore, druids, mysticism, food, drink, sacrificial offerings to the gods and craic.”
Guest performers include Fergus Carey, Sean Lynch, Jeremy Tenenbaum, Ann Tetreault, Bob Zell and host James Feichthaler. There’ll be traditional Irish music by Hollis Payer and Tom O’Malley, with light refreshments offered.
Also currently going on, starting earlier this week and running through the 23rd: an exhibit of 39 years’ worth of photographs by Robin Hiteshew, Beyond the Words: Portraits of Irish Writers, in the McNichol Art Gallery at Neumann University. There’s an opening reception Tuesday, June 11, from 4 to 7 p.m. Robin’s looking for a good representation from the Philadelphia area, including actual card-carrying native-born Irish persons. It’s free.
Sponsored by the Donegal Association of Philadelphia and funded by an Irish Heritage grant through the Irish government’s Emigrant Assistance Programme, it is Hiteshew’s second major photographic project funded by the Irish government. The first was “The Face of Irish Music,” portraits of Irish musicians from elder statesmen like fiddler and composer Ed Reavy, Sr., to young fiddler Haley Richardson, presented at the Irish Consulate in New York City in February 2015.
On Sunday, the public is invited to an event honoring the late Jesuit priest, poet, prophet and peace activist Daniel Berrigan, from 2 to 4 p.m. in the Driscoll Auditorium of Villanova University.
Orbis Books, the publishing arm of the Maryknoll Fathers and Brothers, and Villanova University’s Center for Peace and Justice Education are hosting the event. It’s free.
Former Catholic priest and author James Carroll will be the featured speaker. The event will include the unveiling of a commissioned 4- by 5-foot oil portrait of Father Berrigan by artist Ruane Manning, and a book signing and talk by Jim Forest, author of “At Play in the Lion’s Den,” a memoir and biography of Father Berrigan. It will be followed by a reception and entertainment, with Irish tunes by the busy fiddler Hollis Payer and Rob Curto on accordion.
Also Sunday, Dave Curley of the supergroup Runa appears at the Commodore Barry Arts and Cultural Center (The Irish Center), 6815 Emlen Street in Philly’s Mount Airy neighborhood. The show starts at 7 p.m. Tickets $25 at the door. Curly is a multi-instrumentalist, singer and dancer from Corofin, Co. Galway. Details here.
On Wednesday, take in a “Hands-On Tour: James Joyce & Irish Authors” at The Rosenbach, 2008-2010 Delancey Place in Center City. It starts at 6:30 p.m.
Or, for a real change of pace, Wednesday night marks the 13thannual Phillies’ Irish Heritage Celebration at Citizens Bank Park. There’ll be Irish music, dance and food. It all starts at 7:05 p.m. The Phils are hosting the Diamondbacks. Tickets here.
There will be a reading (and handling!) of James Joyce’s handwritten manuscript of “Ulysses,” along with readings and handling of the works of Irish authors Bram Stoker (he wrote “Dracula”), Oscar Wilde, and more. After the tour, there will be a conversation with curators and light refreshments. Register here.
Finally this week, it’s the John Byrne Band at Steel City, 203 Bridge Street in Phoenixville. The show starts at 8 p.m.
The band will be performing many tunes from its upcoming record, along with a bunch of time-tested favorites. Tickets are $12 in advance, available at https://www.steelcitycoffeehouse.com/concerts–events.html
And that’s it for this week, kids. See you next time.