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One hundred thousand welcomes to you to my official blog of all things Irish from me, Diane Byrnes, host of the Echoes of Erin radio show on WEDO Radio 810AM.

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Milwaukee Irish Fest 2007 - Saturday

A group of eight of us from Pittsburgh traveled to the Milwaukee Irish Fest. Here are some of us as we wait to purchase tickets.

Eileen Connelley, Clair Keenan, Joanne Fitzgerald and Chuck and Eileen McHugh. Not in the picture are John and Ann Rohall and myself (I'm taking the shot).
Our group flew together; but many from the Pittsburgh Irish Rowing Club drove because they had the curraghs. Here are some of the females. This crew came in first in their race.
The gals are just enjoying the day with a bit of rain; they are flexing their muscles!

The first boat is Pittsburgh, the rear boat is Annapolis.

This shot is of Patrick Clark, Chairman of the Pittsburgh Irish Rowing Club.
The rowing area is next to the Cultural Village. I spent most of Saturday at the Village wandering in and out of the various tents. In this tent was some marvelous sean-nos singing and dancing. This shot is of Meaiti Jo Sheamus O Fatharta, a champion sean-nos singer and an uilleann piper; he also did some lilting. Just lovely! Meaiti Jo is also a presenter with Raidio na Gaeltaght in Connemara, County Galway.
This picture is of Brian O Cuinneagain, Champion sean-nos dancer. He was wonderful to watch.
His feet are really moving on this shot.

I didn't get the best light on this shot. The first person on the left is Meaiti Jo, then Johnny Connolly on button box; it was such a delight to watch and hear these marvelous musicians perform. (I didn't get the other names, sorry.)

In the Cultural Village was a 'Literary Tent' with various authors. Over the past year I had the opportunity to interview Brenna Briggs, Author of the Liffey River series, a 13 year old Irish dancer who is also a bit of a detective. The books are wonderful reading; similar to Nancy Drew books. Brenna is getting ready to publish book # 3. You can check out her website at www.liffeyrivers.com.

This particular photo was taken the week before at Brenna's aunts home in White Oak, PA. At the festival we had a chance to sit and talk for a bit. Brenna and her family currently live in Sligo, which they all love.

Here are friends from Omaha, Nebraska, Mike and Linda McGuire. We usually run into each other at a festival or two throughout the year.

These next two photos are of the Dave Rowe Trio. Dave is the guitarist in the middle. Dave is the son of Tom Rowe, who sadly passed away a few years ago and was a member of Schooner Fare. Dave Rowe looks so much like his father, plays and sings like him that it is almost a reincaration. The Trio had some excellent harmonies and all the guys were excellent musicians.

Here is another good friend, Mary Feeney of New Hampshire and Boston, Mass. I first became aware of Mary back in 1986 as she sat near the front row of the Miller Stage listening to Schooner Fare and Barley Bree. Mary is so recognizable even from the back with her massive head of hair; it hasn't changed in all the years I have know her. It was a few years after that time that we met and have been good friends since. We too run into each other at a variety of festivals.

These three fellows are members of The Barra MacNeils out of Nova Scotia. Another talented group of musicians.

Saturday night was a wicked night with heavy rains; most of the bands scheduled early did perform but the groups scheduled later were cancelled. This picture is of The Elders out of Kansas City. Their show is really exciting and upbeat.

This was a night time view of Milwaukee from the Henry B. Meier Fairgrounds just off the water.

Actually this shot here of Scythian was taken on Sunday afternoon. The rain was still with us and the Leinie Celtic Rock Stage seems to get hit first with the wind and rain. That happened here on Sunday. Scythian were trying to do an acoustic set, however it was so difficult as it is quite a large area. These fellows really did an exceptional job! They were tested on their entertainment skills; I think they superceded all expectations. They had a bit of help from Kirk McLeod of Seven Nations and a couple of other fellows.

Scythian are entertainers, plus I knew I would see them in Pittsburgh on Wednesday after Irish Fest.

Also on Sunday, I stopped off at the Celtic Roots Stage and heard Ladies of Longford. They were quite a pleasant suprise. The Ladies are comprised of Mother and two daughters plus two additional women. Very enjoyable!

This is the end of Saturday and a bit of Sunday.




At 2:20 PM, Blogger flynchobserver said...

Hello! I was googling Milwaukee IrishFest since we play there at the Gaeltacht tent and found your blog. The other musicians at the Gaeltacht Tent are Patrick Cannady on the uilleann pipes and Karen Cannady on the fiddle. Glad you had such a great time there, we always have fun at the Fest and especially at that tent! We had just gotten married the May before IrishFest!


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