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How to Be Irish in Philly

How to Be Irish in Philly

How to Be Irish in Philly This Week

It’s a light week for Irish types, but still manages to provide plenty of interest..

We have three events in the lineup.

The John Byrne Band takes the stage Saturday for a free concert—yes, free—at Drexel Lodge Park in Newtown Square. The concert starts at 4:30 p.m. The park is at 4104 West Chester Pike. A great band in a neat outdoor venue, and did we mention it’s free?

On a different note, catch an award-winning short film called “The American Wake” Sunday at 4:30 at the Philadelphia Irish Center, 6815 Emlen Street in Mount Airy. It’s the story of filmmaker Kevin Quinn’s grandmother’s immigration from County Mayo to New York back in 1950. You can also meet the filmmaker after the presentation. The film will show in the Irish Center’s Barry room right after the Mayo Association meeting. Continue Reading

How to Be Irish in Philly

How to Be Irish in Philly This Week

How to be Irish in Philly this week, you may ask?

Funny you should ask!

Let’s start Saturday with a really big event, one of the highlights of the year: The Philadelphia Fleadh—pronounced “flah,” not “flea”—to be held at the spacious Pennsylvania Army National Guard Armory & Readiness Center, 2700 Southampton Road in Northeast Philadelphia.

This event, now in its seventh year, runs from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.

There will be 13 bands and performers, including the Bogside Rogues, the John Byrne Band, Seamus and CJ, Ray Coleman and more, playing on several stages—that ought to keep you going for a long time. If you’re into traditional Irish music, you can take part in—or just listen to—traditional Irish music sessions. Local dance school Celtic Flame will host a dance competition, the Feis (“fesh”) at the Fleadh. Or you can strap on your own dancing shoes at a ceili.

Come hungry and be ready to spend some money on some cool Celtic stuff. There will be plenty of food and drink, plus vendors. The kids will find plenty to do, too, with face painting, a bounce house, balloon critters, and more. Continue Reading

How to Be Irish in Philly

How to Be Irish in Philly This Week

This is going to be a terrific week for music, benefits and more.

We’ll start with a quick reminder: Jarlath Henderson, from County Armagh, Ireland, is the recipient of the BBC Young Folk Musician of the Year Award and is renowned as a balladeer and three-time winner of the All-Irelands on uilleann pipes. He also plays flute, whistle and cittern. In short: multi-talented. And tonight (May 3), he is appearing at the Commodore John Barry Arts and Cultural Center (a/k/a the Irish Center), 6815 Emlen Street in Philly’s Mount Airy neighborhood, together with Innes Watson.

The show starts at 8 p.m. Details here. Add this to your musical to-do list. Continue Reading

How to Be Irish in Philly

How to Be Irish in Philly This Week

A busy weekend of Irish-ness lies ahead.

We’ll start Saturday, with an evening with Órfhlaith Begley at the Philadelphia Irish Center.

Órfhlaith Begley is a Sinn Féin politician, the first woman elected as West Tyrone MP, in May 2018.

Begley, who works in a general solicitor practice, is well-known for her passionate human rights advocacy and her longtime interest in politics.

The presentation starts at 7 p.m. You’ll find the Irish Center at 6815 Emlen Street in Philly’s Mount Airy neighborhood. Continue Reading

How to Be Irish in Philly

How to Be Irish in Philly This Week

It’s pretty busy this coming week, with a wide range of events—from Gaelic athletics to fund-raisers to a concert by one of the best Irish traditional fiddlers on the planet.

So here goes.

Tomorrow, Saturday, there are two noteworthy events:

The first is the Liam Hegarty Liberty Bell Tournament, a huge youth Gaelic Athletic Association tourney in Malvern. The event is named after the late Liam Hegarty, a man deeply dedicated to many local Irish causes, including the Delco Gaels youth athletic club and Gaelic athletics writ large. He passed away in December and is sorely missed.

We have a story about the tournament that provides a lot more details, but the long and short of it is, hundreds of young hurling and Gaelic football athletes from up and down the Northeast coast will converge upon the Line Road Fields, 137 Line Road, in Malvern, starting at 9 a.m. and going all day, culminating in a match between the adult Delco Gaels and Donegal Philadelphia. It’s all in support of a great cause, and a terrific way to learn more about Gaelic sports—if you’re not already intimately familiar. Continue Reading

How to Be Irish in Philly

How to Be Irish in Philly This Week

We’re coming up on Easter, and one of this week’s events will help you get ready.

But first …

Glenside Gaelic Club kicks off its season with a beef and beer Saturday night from 8 to 11 at Our Lady Help of Christians School, 1500 Marian Road in Abington. Pay $35 in advance or $40 at the door. You’ll get a lot for your money. First off, music by the fabulous Raymond McGroary, with beer, wine and food included. You can also try your luck at 50/50 raffles.For tickets, email Mairead at Continue Reading

How to Be Irish in Philly

How to Be Irish in Philly This Week

Something new this week, and something else you’d have to have lived under a rock to have missed.

Let’s start with what you know—Celtic Woman. The troupe’s Ancient Land tour rolls into Lancaster Saturday night at the American Music Theatre, 2425 Lincoln Highway East. The show starts at 8 o’clock. So if you missed out on their Academy of Music show Thursday night—or if you just can’t get enough and you want to see them again—here’s your chance.

You can order your tickets here.

Also a reminder, we interviewed CW violinist Tara McNeill. You might want to give it a listen. Continue Reading

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. Continue Reading