Chicago Celtic Festival 2008

The Chicago Celtic Festival is another free festival in Grant Park from the Mayor’s office of Special Events in Chicago.

(they are so generous there) The Celtic Festival originated to celebrate the 7 original Celtic Nations. The original Celtic Nations were: Ireland, Scotland, Wales, The Isle of Man, Cornwall, Spain, Brittany France and Galicia. For the purpose of the festival they celebrate Celtic music, dance, golf sports, food, tartan kilts and more fun activities for the whole family. It is Free to the public and runs from 11 am to 9pm on Saturday and Sunday. Come out to explore your Irish, Scott, Celtic or Welsh heritage as well as learn more abut the history, music, culture and food from that green region of the world.

The Schedule of events at the Celtic Fest include many musical acts, dance,

At the Petrillo Music Shell the bands will be:

Saturday, September 13, 2008
6:00pm The Elders
7:15pm Great Big Sea

Sunday, September 14, 2008
6:00pm Old Blind Dogs

At the Celtic Crossroads Stage the Musical performers will be:

Saturday, September 13, 2008

11:30am Cara
12:50pm Beoga
2:10pm Old Blind Dogs
3:30pm Larkin & Moran Brothers
4:50pm Men In Kilts Leg Contest

Sunday, September 14, 2008

11:30am Errigal
12:50pm Mary Jane Lamond
2:10pm The Willis Clan
3:30pm The Muck Brothers
4:50pm Bodega

The Celtic Voice Tent has all kinds of interesting speakers with a wide variety of Celtic, Irish, Welsh and cultural topics. I have heard about the shapeshifters from listening to Glen Hansard talk in concerts I have listened to online. It sounds like an interesting folklore and history.

Saturday, September 13, 2008
Noon Finding Your Chicago Irish - with Sharon Shea Bossard
1:15pm Kevin Henry and Maggie Healy
2:30pm Tim O’Sullivan
3:45pm Learn to Speak Welsh
5pm Mary Jane Lamond
6:15pm Irish Heritage Singers

Sunday, September 14, 2008
Noon The Old Town School Women’s Choir
1:15pm Jim Wearne
2:30pm From Celts to Christians, Ireland in Late Antiquity and Early Middle Ages - with Sean Doyle
3:45pm David Llewellyn
5pm The Shapeshifters and Fairy
6:15pm Navan

Learn to dance at the Céilí Dance Tent!! I have always wanted to learn more about the Riverdance style of Irish Dance, here is my chance.

Saturday, September 13, 2008
12:00-1pm Emma O’Sullivan & Sean Nos performance and instruction
1pm-3pm Broken Pledge Ceili Band & Ed Heffernan, dance instructors
3pm-4:30pm Glen Ayre & Ken Chau, dance instructors
4:30pm-6pm Broken Pledge Ceili Band & Ed Heffernan, dance instructors

Sunday, September 14, 2008
12:00-1pm - Emma O’Sullivan & Sean Nos performance and instruction
1pm-3pm - Ceoltoiri Chicago & Brendan Houlihan, dance instructor
3pm-4:30pm - Glen Ayre & Barbara Cool, dance instructor
4:30pm-6pm - Ceoltoiri Chicago & Brigid Sutton, dance instructor

And finally all the Irish Dance Companies that will be performing this weekend!

Saturday, September 13, 2008
12:00pm Sets of Erin
12:30pm Evanston Scottish Country Dancers
1:00pm McNulty School of Irish Dance
1:30pm Thistle & Heather Highland Dancers
2:00pm Trinity School of Irish Dance
2:30pm Teresa y Los Preferidos Spanish Dance Co.
2:45pm World Academy of Irish Dancers
3:15pm Gillan School of Highland Dance
4:00pm Dennehy Irish Dancers
4:45pm Sheila Tully School of Irish Dance
5:15pm Teresa y Los Preferidos Spanish Dance Co.
5:30pm Cas Dannsa
6:15pm Lavin-Cassidy School of Irish Dance

Sunday, September 14, 2008
12:00pm Gaelic Park Set Dancers
12:30pm Royal Scottish Country Dance Society
1:00pm Spriorad Damhsa
1:30pm -illan School of Highland Dance
2:15pm Cross-Keys School of Irish Dance
2:45pm Teresa y Los Preferidos Spanish Dance Co.
3:00pm Mullane Healy O’Brien Academy
3:45pm Thistle & Heather Highland Dancers
4:15pm The McDance Company
4:45pm Teresa y Los Preferidos Spanish Dance Co.
5:00pm Anam Mor
5:30pm Cas Dannsa
6:15pm Dillon-Gavin School of Irish Dance

If you do decide to go to the Celtic Fest, remember that street parking is impossible to find and parking underground is the only option and it is expensive at ~$30.00. The best way to get there is by public transportation. Buses and EL trains are convieniently in the area and the Metra is also an option from the suburbs with a cab from the station to the fest if needed.

The Chicago Celtic Festival is free to the public and open from 11:00 am to 9:30 pm both Saturday and Sunday this weekend. The only rules are no dogs of course for saftey purposes.

The inaugural Celtic Fest Chicago took place September 21-22, 1997 on Columbus Drive and Jackson Boulevard in Grant Park. Its lofty goal was to educate the public on Celtic music and culture from 7 Celtic nations. Those nations are Ireland; Scotland; Isle of Man; Cornwall; Wales; Galicia, Spain; and Brittany, France.

The festival is unusual in that it highlights different Celtic instruments at two of its tents - the Harp Tent and Uilleann Pipe Tionól (featuring the Irish bagpipe). Among the other stages are a dance performance stage, as well as an interactive tent where the general public an learn how to Celtic dance. Another stage is dedicated to showcasing young students who are keeping the Celtic music scene alive.