TOP EVENTS USA FEATURES PAGES WITH FURTHER INFORMATION ABOUT SELECTED TOP USA EVENTS
mid August – Milwaukee, Wisconsin
The world’s largest celebration of Irish music and culture is at the annual Milwaukee Irish Fest.
Each year more than 100,000 fans join in the “wearing o’ the green” at the scenic 75-acre lakefront Henry W. Maier Festival Park, where as many as 100 bands perform on 16 stages.
Festival favorites play alongside some of the newest and hottest talent discovered in fireside pubs in Ireland. The fiery exuberance of traditional fiddle, haunting native ballads and edgy Irish rock bands, combined with Milwaukee’s internationally acclaimed Irish dance groups make for a weekend of non-stop Irish cheer.
The complete Irish experience, from art and music to dance and crafts can be found in the cultural village. Shop the Moore Street Market, trace your roots in the Genealogy Corner, catch a lecture in the Hedge School or a one-act play in the Theatre Tent and explore exhibits in the Archives Gallery. Enjoy free children’s activities including an Irish Craft tent, a Leprechaun Village and more. Even better, kids 12 and under get in free to the festival.
Unique to Irish Fest is the popular exhibit of Celtic canines, and other crowd-pleasers include the annual Curragh boat races on the lagoon and the Tug-of-War tournament, where teams of men and women from all over the Midwest and Canada compete for prizes. Families cheer on their children in red hair and freckles contests, and fest-goers join in Irish set dancing to live Ceilidh bands.
Of course local and Irish brews add to the revelry, and Irish bakery and culinary specialties are also on offer at this festival, which has been one of the premiere fests in Milwaukee for over 30 years.
During the week before the festival, the Irish Fest Summer School features classes that showcase the rich culture, history and traditions of Ireland and Irish America, past and present. Come early in the week and learn to play Irish fiddle, flute, tin whistle, guitar, harp and more from master musicians. Or take a discussion class and learn about Irish history, Irish language, and culture. Celtic arts classes offer hands-on learning for everyone!
Another festival highlight is the Catholic Mass celebrated on the stage of the 22,000-seat Marcus Amphitheater on the Sunday morning of the festival. The weekend comes to a rousing close on Sunday night as all the musicians gather together for a grand finale called “The Scattering”, topped off by spectacular fireworks.
Whether you’re Irish or not, you’ll be dancing on the tables at Milwaukee Irish Fest – year after year!
For more information on Milwaukee’s Irish Fest visit www.irishfest.com
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New Top Events USA nominations
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