Monday, March 21, 2016

Ormond Beach Celtic Festival ~ 2016

The skirl of bagpipes means the Clans are ready to gather once again for the 6th Annual Ormond Beach Celtic Festival and Highland Games, April 16 & 17, 2016.  This great event returns to Rockefeller Gardens with 5 stages of music, 2 days of Highland Games, authentic Celtic food, vendors selling everything from claddagh rings to tartan kilts, kids’ craft activities and so much more!  Whether you’re celebrating your Celtic heritage or can’t tell haggis from colcannon, the Ormond Beach Celtic Festival has something to love.  The weekend attracts more than 8,000 locals and visitors each year.  Admission is $5 each day for adults.  Children under 12 are admitted free.  This year the Festival has added free off-site parking with free shuttle service to allow everyone access to the Festival activities.

The gates open at 10 am on April 16 for two days of music, food and fun at Rockefeller Gardens and Fortunato Park.  On the south side of the Granada bridge festival goers will find 3 stages of continuous music, a jam tent, Celtic food, crafts and jewelry and, of course, plenty of Guinness.  Twenty-five bands and four Celtic dance troupes from the United States, Canada and the British Isles will appear throughout the weekend. 

Fortunato Park, on the north side of the bridge, is home to the Highland Games and Sunday sheep herding demonstrations as well as a party tent sponsored by Southern Stone featuring more bands and a beer garden.  These Highland Games feature feats of strength and are sanctioned by the North American Scottish Games Athletics organization More than 60 male and female athletes from around the region are expected to attend the Games and throw the caber, the hammer or the stone put.   Senior competition goes on all day Saturday, while Sunday is reserved for beginners, demonstrations and classes. 
This year’s music headliner is famed Celtic harpist and storyteller, Patrick Ball, who returns to the Ormond Beach Celtic Festival after a 2-year absence.  Ball is one of the premier Celtic harp players in the world and a captivating spoken word artist.  In playing the ancient, legendary brass-strung harp of Ireland with its crystalline, bell-like voice, and in performing marvelous tales of wit and enchantment, he not only brings new life to two cherished traditions, but blends them in concert to create “a richly theatrical and hauntingly beautiful performance.”

The Festival also includes two events sure to please food lovers of all ages – Celtic cooking classes featuring the “Celtic Chef”, Eric McBride and a Shortbread Competition for local bakers.  McBride, who has authored four cookbooks about Celtic cuisine, will offer demonstrations on Saturday and Sunday, each featuring a different recipe and culture.  The Shortbread Competition takes place on Saturday morning with 1st, 2nd and 3rd prizes for both traditional and modern shortbreads.  The grand prize is a $200 gift basket from Kerrygold Dairy.  Bakers should visit for rules and an application.

In addition to all the music on stage there is a twice-daily parade by the Festival’s award-winning bagpipe band, Rosy O’Grady’s Highlanders, and a daily parade by all the attending Clans.  If your dog is an Irish setter, a Welsh corgi or a Scottie dog  - or you just want to dress your pup in plaid – be sure to visit the Festival on Sunday for the dog parade.  Dogs can be entered in the parade by making a contribution of dog food or supplies and there will be prizes for the best-dressed dog. 

Event Source: Media Release

 Always verify event information before going.  Event information is subject to change.


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