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Saturday, March 30, 2013

Irish World Dancing Championships Closing in Boston this Weekend

Boston's Melissa McCarthy

Congratulations to the thousands of dancers who competed in the 43rd annual World Irish Dancing Championships in Boston, Massachusetts this week.  It has been an incredible gathering of dancers from around the world and a showcase of Irish culture and heritage.   Everyone came out a winner.

Read this story on the event in the current issue of BITA's Travel & Culture Guide

The championships run from March 24-31 at the Hynes Convention Center in Boston's Back Bay.

For more about the Irish community in Massachusetts visit

For visitor information go to and

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Quebec City St. Patrick's Day Parade, Saturday, March 23

The 4th annual Le Défilé de la St-Patrick de Québec is taking place on Saturday, March 23, 2013, starting at 1:30 p.m. in Quebec City in Canada.

Here is a map of  the parade route, which goes right through the heart of the historic city.  It begins at St. Patrick’s High School on Avenue de Salaberry, heads along rue St-Jean, through the historic gate, and finishes up on rue des Jardins, near  the Notre Dame Basilica Cathedral.

The parade site's historical time line shows the Irish first arrived in Quebec City as members of the French Army in 1760.  The first St. Patrick’s Day procession took place in Quebec City in 1837 and continued off and on through 1926.  

Marching in this year's parade is the Boston Police Gaelic Column of Pipes and Drums

 For details on hotel lodging, transportation, and other travel questions, visit Quebec City Tourism, located at 399, Saint-Joseph Est, Québec, QC G1K 8E2 Canada, or call 418 641-6290  

Quebec City Tourism:
St. Patrick's Day Parade Info:

For year round details on Irish events in New England, Canada and Ireland, visit  

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Irish Romantic Musical Comedy, The Fiddlers of Inishbofin, at Burren Pub in Davis SquareTonight

One of the interesting new shows this St. Patrick's Day is  The Fiddler of Innisbofin, a musical romantic comedy. It is the brainchild of Tommy McCarthy, co-owner of the Burren Pub and fiddler extraordinaire.  It’s premiering at the Burren Pub on March 13-16, featuring, naturally enough some great fiddling as well as singing and romantic hijinks. Purchase tickets online.

Inis Bo Finne (Island of the White Cow) is an island seven miles off the coast of the Galway, with a long legacy of traditional music. 

“I came about the idea for the play two years ago,” McCarthy says.  “When I was at a musician’s birthday party on Inishbofin, a local fiddler from the island sat on one of the visiting musician’s fiddle.  But it did not turn into a love story quiet the opposite. So my wild romantic mind put pen to paper.”

McCarthy collaborated with Peter Charles Holm, a local writer and producer who is directing the play.  They selected an all-Irish cast of performers, including Janine Gunning and Brendan Quirke, Joanne O’Connell, Dessy Rushe, Michelle Glynn, Shane Lally, and McCarthy.  The cast is joined by a stellar session ensemble of Louise McCarthy, Tom Bianchi, Hugh McGowan, as well as pop performer Sean Og, traveling from Ireland for the event.

McCarthy wrote fourteen of the sixteen songs and tunes, and has big plans for the show after its Burren run. “I would love to bring the Fiddles of Inishbofin on the road this spring. I feel its something different. So many other shows are doing the same old thing.”

The proceeds of these concerts will be donated to breast cancer research, McCarthy says. 

Find more stories about the Boston Irish in BITA's Travel & Culture Guide, available for free at tourism kiosks and Irish venues throughout Massachusetts. 

March 2013 is Irish Heritage Month in Massachusetts

Governor Deval Patrick proclaimed March 2013 as Irish Heritage Month in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

With nearly 24% of the state's popular claiming Irish ancestry, Massachusetts is considered the most Irish-American state in the United States, according to the US Census.

For details on Irish cultural activities taking place in Massachusetts this March, click here.

For more about Irish cultural groups, pubs and restaurants, gift shops, travel agencies and year round activities, visit

To find out about Irish history and heritage, visit Boston's Irish Heritage Trail.

For tourist information, got and

The Saw Doctors from Galway Perform at Boston's House of Blues on March 16

The fun-loving, rocking Saw Doctors from Tuam, County Galway, are in Boston on Saturday, March 16, 2013 for a concert at the famous House of Blues. on Lansdowne Street next to Fenway Park. Tickets to the show are $29.50 - $45.00 and can be purchased online or at the door.

The concert starts at 8:00 p.m. and doors open at 7:00 p.m.

Find a full schedule of music at the House of Blues here.

Here is a selection of other Irish music concerts in Massachusetts.

Find year round information on the Irish community in Massachusetts at

Boston Tourism Group Issues Free Travel Guide of Irish Culture and Heritage in Massachusetts

Looking for a run-down of St. Patrick's Day parades, concerts and other cultural activities taking place throughout St. Patrick's Day month in Massachusetts?  Pick up a copy of Travel & Culture Guide, a free magazine published by the Boston Irish Tourism Association.

The 28 page Guide is available at local tourism kiosks around the state, at Irish cultural venues and selected Irish pubs, gift shops, hotels and colleges.  Here is a list of distribution outlets.

This issue features the Irish World Dancing Championships coming to Boston's Hynes Convention Center from March 23-31, 2013, a round-up of Irish music concerts taking place throughout New England, and a story on Hibernian Hall in Roxbury, which celebrates its centenary in 2013.

You'll find information on Boston's very own Irish Heritage Trail, and guided tours taking place this weekend, starting from the Boston Common Visitors Center. 

There is also a four-page story on Ireland's 2013 initiative, The Gathering, which welcomes people to visit Ireland this year for a massive homecoming celebration.

Find year round details on Irish cultural activities in Massachusetts and the New England states, plus information on traveling to Ireland, by visiting

For visitor information go to

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Top Irish Duo Cranitch and Daly Performing Two Boston Area Shows at Irish Cultural Centre and Boston College

Irish traditional music duo Matt Cranitch on fiddle and Jackie Daly on button accordion perform two shows in Boston this week.

On Wednesday, March 13, they perform at the Irish Cultural Centre in Canton at 8:00 p.m.  Admission is $30 at the door.  The Centre is located in Canton.

On Thursday, March 14, the duo performs at the Gaelic Roots Music series at Boston College from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. at Walsh Hall on BC's Chestnut Hill campus. 

Find year round details on Irish cultural activities in Massachusetts at

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Irish Band Solas Performs at Rogers Center in N. Andover on March 15

Solas, one of the world's leading traditional Irish bands, is performing live at the Rogers Center for the Arts at Merrimack College in North Andover on Friday, March 15, 2013 at 7:30 p.m.

Tickets are $20 in advance and can be purchased online, or $25 at the door the night of the concert. 

Solas recently released its album Shamrock City, which tells the story of immigration to Butte, Montana in the 19th century.

Here is a schedule of upcoming concerts at the Rogers Center

Find year round details on Irish cultural activities in Massachusetts at

For visitor information go to

Massachusetts is Hosting St. Patrick's Day Parades in Abington, Boston, Holyoke and Scituate on Sunday, March 1 7

(Photo Courtesy of Cape Cod St. Patrick's Day Parade)

Thousands of Massachusetts residents and visitors from around the world are getting ready for St. Patrick's Day parades taking place across the Bay State on Sunday, March 17, 2013. The parades are taking place in these cities and towns:
Abington:  1:00 pm

Boston:  1:00 pm

Holyoke:  11:30 am

Scituate:  1:00 pm

 With nearly 24% of all residents claiming Irish ancestry, Massachusetts is the most Irish-American state in the United States, according to the US Census.

You can find details of Irish cultural activities taking place this weekend by visiting

For visitor details, go to

Monday, March 11, 2013

Boston's Irish Heritage Trail, Guided Tours on March 16, 17

To celebrate St. Patrick’s Day the Boston Irish Tourism Association is offering guided tours of the Boston Irish Heritage Trail.

The 75 minute walk led by an experienced tour guide takes you on 300 fascinating years of Boston’s unique Irish history and heritage.  

You’ll discover the Irish role in the Revolutionary War, learn about the 19th century Famine generation and the Irish part in the Civil War.  And you’ll discover famous politicians - from Curley and White to Collins and the Kennedys - who put their indelible stamp on the history of the city and the nation. 

The tour begins at the Visitor Information Center on Boston Common (note: March tours include sites 1-13 only) at these dates/times: 

Saturday, March 16, 2013 at 2:00 p.m.
Sunday, March 17, 2013 at 11:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m.

$15 per adult, $8 for children under twelve
Go to Irish Heritage Trail Tours to reserve your spot on any of the tours.  Or, you can purchase tickets at the Visitor Information Center front desk on Boston Common the day of the tour. 

For more information on Irish culture in Massachusetts, visit

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Irish Band the Prodigals Perform at Irish Cultural Centre on Saturday, March 9

The Prodigals perform in concert at the Irish Cultural Centre in Canton on Saturday, March 9, 2013 at 7:30 p.m. Tickets to the show are $18 and can be purchased online or by calling 781 821-8291.

The Village Voice called the Prodigals "the best Irish-trad rock band" and "indelibly Irish" by the New York Times. 

The concert is followed by a live session at the ICC Pub.

Here is a full schedule of upcoming events at the Irish Cultural Centre in March.  Here are details of the St. Patrick's Week activities at the Centre.

For year round details on Irish activities in Massachusetts visit

For visitor information go to and