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Saturday, August 18, 2018

Rockport Music Presents Celtic Roots & Branches Concert on August 26

Haley Richardson 

Rockport Music presents Brian O'Donovan's Celtic Roots & Branches concert at 5 p.m. on Sunday, August 26, 2018 at the Shalin Liu Performance Center in Rockport, Massachusetts. Tickets to the show are available online. 

For this year’s concert, O’Donovan presents a range of traditional and contemporary artists from around the Celtic world, including singers, dancers, and virtuoso instrumentalists. They’ll be playing a mix of traditional tunes and more contemporary songs from the Celtic tradition, as well as some French Canadian, Acadian, Appalachian, Balkan, and American tap music. 

Among the artists: Robbie O'Connell & Rose Clancy; Keith Murphy; Joey Abarta; Haley Richarson and dancers Kevin Doyle and Evelyn Miller. 

Here is a schedule of upcoming concerts presented by Rockport Music

Enjoy Summer in the City Free Music and Movies at Boston Harbor Hotel

Visitors to Boston and Bostonians themselves can enjoy music, dancing and movies right on Rowes Wharf along the Boston Waterfront, thanks to magnificent Summer in the City series hosted by Boston HarborHotel.

For two decades, Summer in the City has been a special gift to visitors and residents alike, with music on Tuesday (Pop-Soul), Wednesday (Rat Pack Sinatra) and Thursday (Blues Barge), then Friday classic "Movies by Moonlight," a perfect way to relax into the weekend.

The musical line-up is excellent, with some of the region’s top local bands performing.  The series continues through the month and ends on August 31 with a movie screening of Out of Africa starring Meryl Streep.

The Boston Harbor Hotel (BHH) at Rowes Wharf is an exquisite hotel overlooking Boston Harbor. The active wharf is busy in the summer, with regular tours and cruises by Massachusetts Bay Lines and Odyssey Boston.  The food is amazing, thanks to acclaimed Chef Daniel Bruce. Patrons can dine al fresco on Rowes Wharf Sea Grille’s patio and Harborwalk Terrace, enjoying delicious food, seasonal cocktails, and unmatched views of Boston Harbor.

BHH is steps away from the Rose Kennedy Greenway, and right on the Boston Harborwalk, a continuous walkway leading to South Boston on one side, and the North End on the other.

Find more activities in Boston by visiting

Friday, August 10, 2018

Rockport Music Presents Della Mae in Concert on August 15

Rockport Music presents the Nashville-based string band Della Mae at the Shalin Liu Performance Center in Rockport on Wednesday, August 15, 2018.  Tickets are available online

Since forming in Boston in 2009, Della Mae was named IBMA’s Emerging Artists of the Year in 2013, GRAMMY Nominees in 2014 for their debut album on Rounder Records, named among Rolling Stone’s “10 bands to watch for in 2015.” The band has traveled with the US State Department to over 18 countries spreading peace and understanding through music. 

For year round details on Irish, Celtic and folk music in New England, visit

Saturday, August 4, 2018

Norwegian Air Flies from Providence RI To Belfast, Cork, Dublin & Shannon

Norwegian Air has direct flights this summer from T.F.Green Airport in Providence RI to Belfast, Cork, Dublin and Shannon. 

Read the full story in Travel & Culture Magazine, published by Boston Irish Tourism Association (BITA), as well as stories about what to do in Ireland when you arrive.

Also, read about Rhode Island's Irish community.

You can read the summer issue of Travel & Culture online, or pick up a free copy at visitor kiosks, Irish venues and museums in New England.

Saturday, July 14, 2018

Rockport Music Presents "Enter the Haggis" in Concert on July 19

Rockport Music presents the Canadian Celtic folk rock band, Enter The Haggis, in concert at the Shalin Liu Performance Center at 8 p.m. on July 19.  Tickets are available online or at the venue.

Based in Toronto, the band has released eight studio albums.  Their original songs such as One Last Drink, Down with the Ship and Gasoline have become folk rock anthems. 

Here is a schedule of concerts at Shalin Liu Performance Center in Rockport this summer.

Find year round details on Irish and Celtic activities in New England by visiting

Thursday, June 28, 2018

Boston's Irish Famine Memorial Unveiled 20 Years Ago, on June 28, 1998

Boston's Irish Famine Memorial was unveiled before a crowd of 7,000 people on Sunday, June 28, 1998 at the corner of School and Washington Street along Boston's Freedom Trail and Irish Heritage Trail.

The $1 million Memorial commemorated the 150th anniversary of the Irish Famine which occurred in Ireland between 1845-1849, killing nearly one million people and forcing another two million people to emigrate to  Boston, New York, Halifax and other eastern seaboard cities.

The memorial project was headed by the late Thomas J. Flatley, along with Michael Cummings and others from the Boston community. 

At the time of the memorial's unveiling, Former President of Ireland Mary Robinson wrote, "I hope people who come here reflect on the survivors.  And remember, we are the survivors of the survivors." 

Since Boston's Irish Famine Memorial was unveiled, other memorials to the Famine generation were unveiled in Lawrence, Charlestown, MA, and Providence, RI

For year round details on Boston's Irish cultural community, visit

Thursday, June 21, 2018

Summer Issue of Travel & Culture Magazine Focuses on Visiting New England and Ireland

(BOSTON) -- This month the Boston Irish Tourism Association (BITA) released its 2018 summer issue of Travel & Culture Guide, a compendium of Irish festivals and concerts, culinary, cultural and literary activities taking place in Massachusetts and throughout New England.  

The 28-page color magazine is distributed free at visitor kiosks and cultural venues throughout Massachusetts and is available in digital format online.   It has a shelf life through October 2018. 

In New England, the magazine features outdoor festivals concerts, from Boston to Tanglewood and from Cumberland RI up to Rockport, MA.  Some of the performers at Tanglewood this summer include rock/blues/folk legends James Taylor, Bonnie Rait, Ry Cooder and Emmy Lou Harris.  The Boston Harbor Hotel at Rowes Wharf continues its Summer in the City series with free concerts Tuesdays through Thursdays, and free movies every Friday through August 31.  

In Ireland, Travel & Culture lists the top festivals across the island through October, include music festivals like the Fleadh Cheoil taking place in August, which draws upwards of 400,000 people. And it has details on the new Norwegian Air direct service from Providence's T. F. Green Airport to Dublin, Shannon, Cork, Belfast and Edinburgh.  

BITA is celebrating its 18th year as a year-round, cultural tourism organization that promotes the state’s largest ethnic community.  The US Census reports that nearly 24% of all Massachusetts residents claim Irish ancestry.

BITA publishes three issues of Travel & Culture  in March, June and November, and also developed the Boston’s Irish Heritage Trail, which highlights Irish landmarks throughout Boston and around the state.

For further details on festivals and concerts, as well as year-round Irish and cultural activities, hotel packages, gift shops and Irish pubs, visit

Walk Boston's Irish Heritage Trail this Saturday, June 23

Photo of Kevin White Statue at Faneuil Hall, courtesy of BITA

Boston Irish Tourism Association (BITA) is offering a guided tour of Boston's Irish Heritage Trail at 10 a.m. this Saturday, June 23, 2018, led by tour guide Ted Kulik, an expert on local history.

The tour begins at the Visitor Information Center on Boston Common and covers 10 stops along the Trail.  Admission is $15 for adults and $12 for seniors, students and military.  Children under 12 go free when accompanied by a parent.  Fill out the reservation form here, or purchase your ticket the day of the tour at the VIC.

See video from Chronicle/WCVB5 ABC on the origins of the Trail and what's on it.

The Irish Heritage Trail was created in 1994 and covers over 300 years of Boston Irish history, from colonial Irish like Governor James Sullivan and Boston Massacre victim Patrick Carr, to 19th Century Civil War heroes and the Famine generation, to 20th century political leaders, builders and social activists.

BITA's Travel & Culture magazine has a full map of the trail in its summer issue, available for free at the Boston Common Visitor Information Center and other outlets around Boston.

Find year round details on Boston's Irish community at

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

The Irish Were Boston's First Refugees

History is replete with stories about refugees from around the world coming to Boston, Massachusetts, seeking help from tragedies of historic proportions that were too massive for them to face. Very often they were poorly received, as locals feared the burden these immigrants would have on society. 

One of the most compelling chapters in the city's history involves Irish immigrants who fled Ireland in the 1840s, fleeing starvation, disease and death.

Many of these refugees fled to Boston, where they arrived, traumatized and ill, having lost parents and children, neighbors and friends. 

News reports describe Irish families huddled in doorways in downtown Boston, begging for food.  A  group of 50 Irish refugees camped out on Boston Common because they had no where to stay.  Many never made it to the mainland, but were held at the quarantine station on Deer Island in Boston Harbor to see if they carried with them typhus or cholera, diseases that later turned up in the crowded tenement buildings along Broad Street and in the North End.

A large number of Irish who made it ashore were eventually sent to the lunatic asylum in South Boston, since they were unable to cope with the tragedy they had experienced.

In June 1998, Boston's Irish community joined with city officials to unveil an Irish Famine Memorial Park in downtown Boston, to commemorate the 150th anniversary of this tragic episode in the city's history.  The Memorial remains a stark reminder that many Bostonians today are the descendents of that Irish famine generation. 

The Famine is also a reminder that refugees are still leaving their homelands to escape certain death, and that humanitarian crises in our lifetime must be solved by those who can. 

For learn more about this episode in Boston's history, visit the Irish Famine Memorial, on the corner of School and Washington Street in Downtown Boston, a stop along Boston's

To read more about Boston's Irish history from the 17th century to the present, read Irish Boston: A Lively Look at Boston's Colorful Irish Past. 

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Canada's Singer/Songwriter Gordon Lightfoot Performs in Rockport on June 12

Rockport Music presents Gordon Lightfoot, the iconic Canadian troubadour, in concert at the Shalin Liu Performance Center in Rockport, MA at 8 p.m. on Tuesday, June 12, 2018. 

Tickets to the concert can be purchased at the venue. 

The singer/songwriter has left quite a mark over the last 50 years, inspiring thousands of aspiring songwriters to follow in his footsteps. His songs belong squarely in the folk canon, including classics like “Early Morning Rain” and “For Lovin’ Me,” as well as 70’s pop hits like “Sundown” and “The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald.”

Here is a schedule of upcoming folk, pop, World and jazz concerts at Shalin Liu this summer and fall. 

Find more about Irish activities in Massachusetts by visiting