cover story - august 2014
34th Milwaukee Irish Fest turns
FOR FOUR DAYS this month Milwaukee’s lakefront festival grounds will look, sound and taste like an extension of the Emerald Isle.
Recognized as the largest celebration of Irish culture in North America, Milwaukee Irish Fest Aug. 14-17 brings visitors from around the world to Henry W. Maier Festival Park (Summerfest grounds) for a celebration of Irish and Celtic music, culture, dance, sports, food, shopping and much more.
Using almost all of the 75-acre grounds on the city’s lakefront, the festival offers 16 stages of live entertainment with more than 100 acts. At the festival’s massive Cultural Village visitors can trace their Irish roots, learn the Irish language or take in a live theater performance and participate in many other activities, often led by residents of Ireland and other Celtic nations.
“If you want to experience the Emerald Isle – or if you’re just looking to have a great time with family and friends – Irish Fest is the place to be this August,” said Patrick Boyle, executive director of Milwaukee Irish Fest. “Our diverse offering of Irish music, culture and family entertainment makes Milwaukee the next best thing to Ireland itself.”
Here are highlights that festgoers can experience this year:
Music from around the globe
Fan favorites include the Red Hot Chilli Pipers, Carlos Núñez, StepCrew, We Banjo 3, Creel, Skerryvore, Mànran, Sythian, Gaelic Storm and Sharon Shannon. Also returning is The Willis Clan, a band that’s currently competing on the hit TV show, America’s Got Talent.
Irish and Celtic culture
Traditional sounds of Scotland
Brian Boru Millennium Celebration
Food & spirits
Sports & family fun
Milwaukee Irish Fest also features a large Children’s Activity Area, which includes a Leprechaun Village, Highland Games, Tea Room, Pot O’ Gold and a large craft area. New for 2014, kids can participate in a Viking Dig. Ongoing entertainment for kids includes Irish dancers, music, magicians and more. To help keep families entertained, the festival offers the Passport to Fun program that encourages kids to make crafts, see Irish dance performances and even pet dogs in the Celtic Canine area.
Milwaukee Irish Fest hours are 5-10 p.m. Aug. 14; 4 p.m.-midnight Aug. 15; noon to midnight Aug. 16 and 11 a.m.- 10 p.m. Aug. 17. General admission is $17 for adults and $12 for seniors (60+). Children under 12 are free.
Milwaukee Irish Fest offers a number of promotions that allow free or reduced entry to the grounds. There are also special discounts for students, military personnel and their families. To learn more about these discounts and promotions, visit IrishFest.com and click on the Festival Info tab.
To plan your visit to North America¹s largest celebration of Irish entertainment and culture, visit IrishFest.com, call (414) 476-FEST, or connect with the festival on Facebook or Twitter. Sláinte!
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