Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Ormond Beach Celtic Festival ~ 2017

What’s two day’s long, a quarter of a mile wide, and dances to the sound of the fiddle and the bagpipe?  The Ormond Beach Celtic Festival, of course!  Arriving this year on April 22 and 23, 2017, this seven-year old festival occupies two downtown parks along the Halifax River and fills them with 5 music stages, a Highland Games, clans and Celtic societies from throughout the region and a host of other activities. 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.  There is plenty of free parking, including free off-site parking with free shuttle service to allow everyone access to the Festival activities.

On the south side of the Granada bridge in Rockefeller Gardens 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.  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.

This year the Festival features two headliners, Festival favorite Brendan Nolan, the Irish singer and balladeer, and 14 year-old Haley Richardson.  Richardson is an All-Ireland prize-winning fiddler (2015 & 2016).  She has performed with many of the most well known names in Irish music today including The Chieftains, Altan, Dervish, Pride of New York, Liz Carroll with Cherish the Ladies, John Whelan, Paddy Keenan, and is a regular member of The John Whelan Band.

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. This year we’ll have a second pipe band, Daytona Pipes and Drums, who will be providing pipe music for the Games. These Highland Games are sanctioned by the North American Scottish Games Athletics organization with competitors racking up points toward the ultimate goal of competing in Scotland. 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.  

If you’re more interested in traditional food than traditional sport, make sure to grab a pint of Guinness or Tomoka Brewery’s Irish Red to drink with your meat pies, shortbread or fish and chips.  The annual 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.

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 cash, dog food or supplies for the Halifax Humane Society.  There will even be prizes for the best-dressed dog.  

Visit our Celtic vendors and food stalls in the Celtic Village.  Learn to shoot an arrow or throw an axe.  Relax with a pint of Guinness along the beautiful Halifax River. Get your own kilt. Play a game. Discover your inner Celt. Meet a falcon. Take home something beautiful.  Experience the Ormond Beach Celtic Festival!

Adams, Cameron & Co, Realtors, Bright House Networks, City of Ormond Beach, Daytona Beach News-Journal, Florida Hospital Memorial Medical Center, Guinness, Highlander Corporation, Mitchell Noel Insurance, Money Pages Magazine, Ormond Beach Observer, Ritchey Cadillac, Ritchey Buick-GMC, Robbins Camper Sales, S.R. Perrott, Inc., Southern Stone Event Group

Event Source: Media Release


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