The annual Boston Irish Festival is taking place on Saturday, June 8 and Sunday, June 9, at the Irish Cultural Centre in Canton, about 10 miles from Boston. And everyone’s welcome, you don’t have to be Irish!
Now in its 23nd year, the festival takes place on the spacious 46-acre grounds of the Centre, tucked away off Route 138, not far from the interstate highways. It boasts state-of-the-art athletic fields, walking trails, a children’s play area, and an authentic Irish cottage built by craftsmen to traditional specifications – thatched roof and all.
The festival’s main draw, of course, is great Irish music, on fiddles, accordions, pipes, flutes and guitars, taking place on various stages throughout the festival grounds.
The opening performance by fiddle star Eileen Ivers and her band Immigrant Soul, was postponed on Friday, June 7, due to the rain. Instead she will return to the Irish Cultural Centre for a concert on Friday, August 2, 2013.
Throughout the weekend you’ll hear continuous Irish music, including ballad and pub songs, Gaelic songs, and Irish dance music. Here is a complete musical line-up for the weekend.
Irish step dancers will display their fancy footwork, including Solas an Lae and Boston University's Step About Boston dance troupe. Also, the Festival is hosting its first Irish Feis this year, brought to you by the Harney Academy of Irish Dance.
Through the weekend, the Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) will play traditional Irish games like hurling and camogie. You'll also find a gathering of Irish setters and wolfhounds, a soda bread baking contest, an Irish tea house, author lectures, genealogy workshops and children’s cultural activities.
And let’s not forget the redheads. This year’s festival is aiming to break the Guinness Book of World Records for the most redheads gathered in one place. It takes place Saturday, June 8 at 2:00 p.m., so be there to help make history and get your photo taken.
The Irish Cultural Centre was formed in 1989 by a group of dedicated Irish leaders to preserve their cultural traditions in Massachusetts and the region for generations to come. The Centre has plenty of other cool activities, including a day camp for kids, lectures, music lessons, theatre and social gatherings.
You can find year-round details of Irish activities throughout the state, including festivals, parades, concerts, campus events, shops, pubs and cultural groups, by visiting IrishMassachusetts.com
For more details on visiting Massachusetts, go to MassVacation.com and BostonUSA.com.