Ithaca Celtic Festival

Ithaca Celtic Festival – Saturday, October 8, 2016 – Stewart Park, Ithaca

Posted by  //  September 25, 2016  //  Local Business

The Ithaca Celtic Festival is an annual event held at beautiful Stewart Park in Ithaca, NY.  This year we have moved the festival to October 8th-something we have wanted to do for a while and finally made the move to this “gorges” time of year! Along with the History Center, we are also very pleased to announce that we have partnered with Zero Impact of Rochester, NY, a zero-waste solutions company that specializes in sustainable festivals.  Also helping with this years planning and organization is our very own Ithaca Pipes and Drums.  Many thanks to all of our organizers for what we feel is going to be our best year to date!  The Festival is made possible, in part, by a grant from the Tompkins County Tourism Program.

The festival will commence on Saturday, October 8th at 10:00am with showcases in solo bagpiping, drumming, and Scottish heavy athletics.  Unfolding throughout the day is a full line-up of musical entertainment, bagpipes band performances and many cultural activities including; wool-spinning, weaving and kilt-making demonstrations (see Tartan Finder for authentic tartan fabric), clan booths, Celtic foods and crafts, non-stop activities for children, Irish step-dancing, Gaelic language instruction, Scottish highland dancing and historical demonstrations.  The festival will open and close the day with all of the bagpipe bands playing in unison.

Headlining our music stage are the very talented bands of the Finger Lakes Region. The Finger Lakes region also boasts an abundance of winerys and breweries. Enjoy wine from MacGregor Vineyards, or a beer on tap in our refreshment tent located near the music stage.

Have kids?  The Ithaca Celtic Festival has made educating and entertaining the next generation a top priority and each year we seek to add an event or two to the kid’s activities area.  The kid’s activities area has made its home in Stewart Park’s Historic Main Pavilion. There are also games, arts & crafts, races, parachute play, face painting, Irish Step-dance classes and the ever popular clan scavenger hunt. There will also be Irish story time with Dierdre McCarthy – she’ll take you on a trip to Ireland with the use of music, dance and pictures to illustrate her adventures.

Enjoy demonstrations on how to make kilts, dye wool or shear sheep!  Find out your family roots at one of the clan tents or try your first haggis puff!  There are many cultural demonstrations at the festival that are open for you to try.  After last year’s success, our exciting historical textile presentation entitled ‘WAUKING THE TWEED” will return, please join us in a round or two of “fulling” cloth.  Our spinner’s guild will be reenacting the waulking (fulling) of a 10 yard length of hand woven herringbone tweed accompanied by the singing of traditional work songs sung in Scottish Gaelic.  Audience participation is most welcome and instruction will be provided. No experience is necessary.  Demonstrations of this nature are a rarity in the United States and you won’t want to pass it by.

Enjoy the Festival! ​

Mary Archin, Producer
Ithaca Celtic Festival

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