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Sunday, December 4, 2016

Travel Idea - Spend Christmas & New Year's in Dublin, Ireland

Families and friends reunite, shopping districts are filled with good cheer, and there are lots of musical performances to enjoy.  Plus, the city's amazing cultural treasures are easily accessible without long lines, including the Book of Kells at Trinity College, the National Gallery of Ireland and National Library of Ireland, plus perennial favorites like a tour of the Guinness Storehouse

Christmas melds right into Dublin's exciting New Year's Festival, which runs this year from December 30 to January 1 and includes three days of entertainment, fireworks and bright lights as well as live music in Stephen's Green and St. Patrick's Cathedral.

You can find more details by visiting

Saturday, December 3, 2016

Norwegian Air Direct Route Between Cork and Boston Cleared for Takeoff

The US Department of Transportation has approved Norwegian Air International's (NAI) application to fly round trip, direct flight service between Cork and Boston, starting in 2017.

The announcement came on Friday, December 2, clearing the way for a route that had been in the works for nearly three years.

Cork Airport managing director, Niall MacCarthy, said that the new route “will help grow inbound tourism, give Cork Airport’s passengers greater choice, attract more investment to the region and improve social and cultural ties between Ireland and the US.”

Norwegian Air officials said it hopes to have four-five weekly flights, depending on its popularity.  Officials say they will fly a Boeing 737-800 on the Boston-Cork route, which seats up to 189 passengers. Cork is Ireland’s second largest city, and also has the country’s second busiest airport.

Norwegian Air was rated Europe’s Best Low Cost Airline for a fourth consecutive year by  industry website,, which is viewed by 14 million visitors from 232 countries. 

"The Boston-Cork route adds another option for American and Irish consumers traveling between these two great destinations," said Colette Quinlin, managing director of the Boston Irish Tourism Association. "In addition, Boston and Cork share many amenities that appeal to visitors: a rich and proud history, stunning coastline, a robust culinary scene and a vibrant arts and cultural scene," she said.

"Securing a transatlantic service for Ireland’s second largest airport has been an aspiration of ours for some time," MacCarthy said.  "Norwegian Air’s service will be welcomed by business and leisure travelers throughout the region.”

County Cork is one of six counties in the Province of Munster, which also includes counties Kerry, Waterford, Limerick, Clare and Tipperary.

Boston is located in Massachusetts, which has the highest percentage of residents with Irish ancestry in the United States, at 21.5%.  And Massachusetts is part of the New England region, which also has a high percentage of Americans of Irish descent.

For year round information on the Irish community in Massachusetts, visit

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Christmas Holiday Concerts in Massachusetts & New England

Dance Prism Perform Nutcracker Ballet 

Boston Irish Tourism Association has compiled a Christmas schedule of amazing holiday concerts, plays, dances and other activities that celebrate Christmas in New England

The calendar ranges from Boston Pops Holiday shows and A Christmas Celtic Sojourn to classic offerings like Handel's Messiah, A Christmas Carol and the Nutcracker Ballet.

Several touring artists and groups are coming through New England this month, including the Vienna Boys Choir, Irish tenor Ronan Tynan, fiddle star Eileen Ivers, and Irish duo Eamonn McCrystal and Cloe Agnew of Celtic Woman.

Other annual celebrations include Christmas in Newport,  Reagle Music Theatre's Christmastime, Breakfast with Santa at the Irish Cultural Centre, and the Irish Dance Spectacular at the Blackstone River Theatre.

For more details on Christmas shows and other activities, read BITA's Travel & Culture Guide.

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Burren Pub Hosts Fourth Annual Benefit For Somerville Homeless Coalition on November 30

The Burren Pub in Davis Square, Somerville, is proud to sponsor the 4th annual Benefit of Music for the Somerville Homeless Coalition, taking place at 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday, November 30,2016.

Tickets are $35 and can be purchased at the door.  100% of the proceeds go to the Coalition.

Tonight's event features great local musicians, including Tommy McCarthy, Louise Costello with Sean Clohessy; Christian McNeill; the Bagboys; Opera on Tap; George Woods; Mary Casey and Lindsay O'Donovan; Cast of Return of the Winemakers; Jenna Moynihan and Mairi Chaimbeul plus surprise guests. Brian O'Donovan is the master of ceremonies. 

Find out more about Boston's Irish community by visiting

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Niamh Parsons & Graham Dunne Perform at Irish Cultural Centre on December 3

Irish traditional duo Niamh Parsons and Graham Dunne perform in concert at the Irish Cultural Centre in Canton on Saturday, December 3, 2016 at 7:30 p.m.

Tickets to the show are $25 and can be purchased at the door or by calling 781 821-829.

Parsons has "one of the most beautiful voices in Ireland," according to Irish Music Magazine, whose "ornamentation breathes new life into these beautiful songs," says legendary singer Andy Irvine.  She is also an All Ireland concertina player, while Dunne is a multi-instrumentalist and also a great singer.

The duo are performing an evening of traditional melodies as well as some Christmas songs.

Here is a calendar of upcoming events at the Irish Cultural Centre.

For year round information on Boston's Irish scene, visit

Sunday, November 20, 2016

2017 Schedule of St. Patrick's Day Parades in Massachusetts & Rhode Island Issued by Tourism Group

Spectators at the Patrick's Parade on Cape Cod

The Boston Irish Tourism Association has released its 2017 schedule of St. Patrick's Day parades taking place in Massachusetts and Rhode Island.  

The parade season begins on Saturday, March 4, with the Cape Cod Patrick's Parade, and finishes up on Sunday, March 19 with parades in Abington, Boston, Holyoke and Scituate.

Stay tuned for updates on other parades taking place in the New England region.

Here is a list of Irish cultural activities in March 2017 in New England.

For year round information on Irish cultural events and organizations, visit

Irish Tenor John McDermott Performs at Worcester Hibernian Center for Food Pantry Fundraiser on November 20

Acclaimed Irish tenor John McDermott performs a benefit concert to aid the St. John's Food for the Poor program in Worcester at 6:00 p.m. on Sunday, November 20, 2016.

The concert takes place at Fiddler's Green Pub in the Worcester Hibernian Cultural Centre at 19 Temple Street.  Tickets are $25 at the door.

McDermott gained international fame as a member of the Irish Tenors and has since had a successful solo career.  He is well-known for his devotion to charitable causes, from helping veterans get housing and health care to providing for poor and homeless citizens in Canada and the United States.

Here is a profile of McDermott from 2015.

Find year round details on Irish activities in Massachusetts at