The Greater Hartford Irish Festival has sustained itself over the past 30 years as the result of the foresight and dedication of countless individuals, committed to the development and encouragement of Irish culture. It was just such pioneers who saw this annual event as an opportunity – a fundraising opportunity to assist in achieving the ongoing goals of the Irish American Home Society, as well as an opportunity to welcome visitors from throughout Connecticut and the Northeast to the Society’s “home” in Glastonbury.
Over the course of time, the festival has grown, expanded and developed. It has provided a venue to witness and enjoy entertainment and activities of many sorts, for young and old, Irish and non-Irish alike. Glastonbury has hosted a “who’s who” of Irish entertainers, the likes of Pat Roper, Paddy Noonan, Noel Henry, and Frank Patterson. With the advent of Celtic Rock, the grounds have been brought to life by such groups as Seven Nations, the Prodigals, and the McCabes.
Certainly Irish step dancing has always been a crowd pleaser. The post Riverdance and Lord of the Dance days have resulted in crowds five deep witnessing the intricate footwork of young entertainers, exhibiting their pride in their heritage. Displays and discussions on the likes of bread-baking and story-telling, the Great Famine and genealogy, have long been a festival staple.
And always and every year – there’s traditional music, the St Patrick’s Pipe band, ceili and set dancing- leaving observers wondering: how do they do it?
Not to be forgotten, the festival provides other amenities as well. Irish goods and products are provided for purchase in a manner that would rival O’Connell St. A variety of foods and beverages are available throughout the weekend.
Held on the grounds at the Irish American Home Society
132 Commerce Street
Glastonbury, CT 06033
Click here for directions
Guinness Main Stage
Friday, July 25, 2013: 5:00 p.m. - 12:00 a.m.
Saturday, July 26, 2013: 2:00 p.m. - 12:00 a.m.
Sunday, July 27, 2013: 1:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Catholic Mass to be celebrated beginning at 12:00 p.m. on Sunday.
*Festival activities do not begin until 1:00 after Mass is completed.
Kids Under 12 - Free
12 and Over - $12.00
FESTIVAL ACTIVITIESCultural Tent – Supported by Bank of America:
This tent is devoted to traditional music, song and dance (including set-dancing, step-dancing, and ceili-dancing). Also in the Cultural tent is an extensive poster-board display on Irish culture, history and literature, including the priceless Book of Kells. Be sure to stop by.
St Patrick's Pipe Band
A family favorite and a hit with festival goers each year. One of the best Irish Pipe Bands in North America. The St Patrick's pipe band will be appearing each day throughout the festival. The band attends the opening and closing ceremonies and appears intermittently at various times throughout the festival.