Experience

Festival Hours:

Friday, July 26, 5.30 p.m -11 p.m
Saturday, July 27, 11.30 a.m. – 11 p.m.
Sunday, July 28, 9 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Admission is FREE

5K/10K Run/Walk

Schedule:

Saturday, Jul 29, 2023 at 9:30 AM – Riverscape

The runs and walk start and finish on the Great Miami River Recreation Trail near RiverScape MetroPark in downtown Dayton. The course is predominantly on the recreation trail (bikeway) – out and back. This race is open to runners and walkers of all ages. Refreshments will be available at the finish. There will be awards for the top 3 in each age group and the overall Male and Female.  Register here

Presenter: United Irish of Dayton

Celebrate Sunday Mass

Schedule:

Sunday 10:00 am

Join us Sunday at 10:00 a.m. at the United Irish of Dayton Stage in the new Five Rivers MetroParks Pavilion to celebrate Gaelic Mass. Mass will be presented in Gaelic and English. Irish dancers and pipers will be present.

Presenter: United Irish of Dayton

Celtic Marketplace

Browse our Celtic Marketplace featuring over 40 vendors with unique items from the Celtic nations.  Our Celtic Marketplace stretches the length of Monument Avenue in the heart of the Dayton Celtic Festival.  Celtic shopping options run the spectrum from stoneware to kilts to jewelry and more.  Bring home a gift for your family or friends from the Celtic Marketplace.  Click here for a list of vendors.

Clogging and the Irish Influence on American Appalachian Culture

Schedule:

Saturday 12:30 – 1:20
Sunday 12:30 – 1:20

Presenter: Five Points Cloggers

The Five Points Cloggers are a non-profit, energetic dance group based in Dayton, OH with dancers of all ages. We specialize in Appalachian Mountain style clogging, also known as buck dancing, to traditional and popular music. The Five Points Cloggers have been performing in the Dayton area for over 30 years at local and regional festivals and events. The group was created to provide an extracurricular activity for young people (ages 8-80) in the Dayton area, to provide entertainment at local festivals and nursing homes and to continue the American traditional dance form created by settlers to America over 200 years ago. For more information about our group – our schedule, joining the group or attending a clogging class, see our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/FivePointsCloggers

Coming to America

Schedule:

Saturday 2:00-2:50 pm

Presenter: Cathy Jo Smith

More information about Cathy Jo’s stories and the Irish Wake info can be found at www.irishteller.com

Dayton Area Rugby Teams – All day

Schedule:

The Rugby Team will be in a tent at the intersection of St. Clair and Monument all weekend – come meet with them!

Rugby first came to Dayton, Ohio in the fall of 1969 when a group of University of Dayton students played their first rugby match. In the years that followed the interest in the sport evolved to establish official club rugby in 1973 and squads in the Dayton area have been successful ever since.  In 1979, Dayton rugby saw the creation of the first women’s squad, and in 1999, it was reformed into the present day women’s team.

Presenter: Dayton Area Rugby Club (DARC) & Five Rivers Youth Rugby Foundation (FRYRF)

DARC is a rugby union club dedicated to the promotion and growth of the sport. They play their home games at Dayton Rugby Grounds located at 620 Shiloh Dr. in Dayton.  For more information on how to get involved, or even just to come out and watch one of their matches, visit www.daytonrugby.com

FRYRF, formed in 2012, is dedicated to the promotion and development of youth rugby. Over the years, they have grown the youth rugby program to six high school teams and a co-ed middle school flag rugby program. To learn more about Dayton’s Youth Rugby, their summer rugby programs and more please visit http://fryrf.org/wordpress/

Food Vendors

Enjoy our selection of 20 food vendors from around the Dayton area and beyond. Everything from Wild Caught Salmon with potato hash, and Irish Whiskey Chops, to snacks, ice cream, and even handmade pretzels. All this to help keep you energized for your day(s) at the Dayton Celtic Festival. Click here for a list of food vendors.

Have some Fun with the Irish Tin Whistle

Schedule:

Saturday 1:30 – 2:20

Looking to add a new dimension to your love for Irish music? Come join The Riley School of Irish Music for a thrilling Irish whistle workshop! Our experienced instructor will guide you through the techniques and nuances of playing this beloved instrument, helping you to unlock its full potential and create beautiful music that will transport you straight to the heart of Ireland. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced player, this workshop is sure to leave you feeling inspired and energized. Come and experience the magic of the Irish whistle – we guarantee you won’t be disappointed!

Presenter: Riley School of Irish Music

Founded in 1996 by Susan Cross Gilligan, the Riley School of Irish Music is a community of children, teens and adults dedicated to the pursuit of Irish traditional music. We are dedicated to preserving and promoting the rich cultural heritage of Irish music. We offer a wide range of classes and workshops for students of all ages and skill levels, from beginner to advanced. Our experienced instructors specialize in traditional Irish instruments such as the fiddle, tin whistle, and bodhran, even traditional Irish singing.

Introduction to Irish Language

Schedule:

Saturday 6:00-6:50 pm
Sunday 3:00-3:50pm

Presenter: Gaeltacht Midwest (hosted by Indiana Celtic Community)

Gaeltacht Midwest provides introductory Irish (Gaelic) language instruction to attendees and connection with other Irish-learning opportunities in the Midwest, US, and abroad. To learn more about their programming please visit them at www.facebook.com/groups/GaeltachtMidwest and www.facebook.com/indianacelticcommunity

Introduction to Irish Music Workshop

Schedule:

Saturday 4:30 – 5:20
Sunday 4:30 – 5:20

Have you ever wondered: What is the difference between jigs and reels?  What do you call those instruments?  How can people from all over the world sit in a circle and play the same song?  This workshop will take a big-picture look at what makes Irish music…Irish!  Get a chance to hear tunes, songs, and explanations from some of Dayton Celtic Festival’s top Irish and American headliners.  Feel free to come ready with questions.  Participating Artists:  Shane Hayes (Socks in the Frying Pan) and Joseph McNulty (Boxing Banjo).

Presenter: Daniel McKewen (Drowsy Lads)

Since a young age, Daniel has been drawn to music.  With a foundation as a drummer, his guitar playing has been described at “driving” and “rhythmic”.  At a later age he added the uilleann pipes to his arsenal.   As a founding member of The Drowsy Lads Daniel has had the pleasure of playing and teaching at some of the largest Irish Music gatherings in the world.

Introduction to the Etiquette and Background of an Irish Session

Schedule:

Saturday 2:30 – 3:20
Sunday 2:30 – 3:20

Have you ever entered a pub to find a group of folks sitting at the tables,
enjoying a few pints and playing Irish tunes together? It’s not a performance and
not really a jam, but something in between. Community music-making in a pub is an Irish tradition, now shared around the world and it’s often called a “session.” If you’ve ever wished you could join in the musical conversation, come and learn how a session works and the guidelines that keep it enjoyable for all involved.

Presenter: Riley School of Irish Music

Founded in 1996 by Susan Cross Gilligan, the Riley School of Irish Music is a community of children, teens and adults dedicated to the pursuit of Irish traditional music. We are dedicated to preserving and promoting the rich cultural heritage of Irish music. We offer a wide range of classes and workshops for students of all ages and skill levels, from beginner to advanced. Our experienced instructors specialize in traditional Irish instruments such as the fiddle, tin whistle, and bodhran, even traditional Irish singing.

Introduction to the Irish Bouzouki

Schedule:

Saturday 5:30 – 6:20

Presenter: Randy Clepper

Multi-instrumentalist Randy Clepper is in demand as a performer of Irish traditional music on cittern/bouzouki, fingerstyle acoustic guitar, tenor banjo, and hammered dulcimer.

Ireland’s Matron Saint Gets Her Day: St. Brigid’s Day 2023

Schedule:

Sunday 12:00-12:50 pm

Presenter: Cindy Thompson

Known for the inspirational Celtic theme employed in most of her books, Cindy Thomson is the author of two novel series and several non-fiction books. A genealogy enthusiast, she writes from her home in Ohio where she lives with her husband Tom near their three grown sons and their families. Visit me on social media, join my email list to download a free novella!

Irish & Scottish Piping Workshop

Schedule:

Saturday 3:30 – 4:20
Sunday 1:30 – 2:20

An Introduction to the Uilleann Bagpipe (Ireland) and The Great Highland Bagpipe (Scotland).  This workshop focuses on the common and divergent histories of two very different instruments with a common origin that have practically become national symbols for two countries. We will discuss the history of the bagpipe in Scotland and Ireland, how Celtic scholars propose the ancient “war pipes” evolved to the Great Highland Bagpipe of Scotland in the late 1700s, and the emergence of the “union” or “elbow” bagpipes of the 1800s that would be come the Uilleann pipes of Ireland. This workshop also demonstrates the comparative differences between the two instruments by examining how they are constructed and played. The final portion of the workshop will demonstrate the very different styles of playing with demonstrations both Scottish and Irish piping music.

Presenter: Larry Fortson

Larry Fortson plays both the Scottish Great Highland Bagpipe and Irish Uilleann bagpipe. He was a competition Highland piper for many years and has won awards in both US and UK competitions. Larry also plays 3 other types of bagpipes, Irish whistles, bluegrass banjo, and prefers Irish whiskeys over Scotch.

Irish Symbolism: Shamrocks, Celtic Knots, Claddaghs & Harps

Schedule:

Saturday 3:00-3:50pm

Shamrocks, Celtic Knots, The Claddagh, The Harp, are all symbols of Ireland but what do they mean? Come listen as author Cindy Thomson walks you through the legends, symbolism, and deep meanings of the designs we love to wear to celebrate all things Irish.

Presenter: Cindy Thompson

Known for the inspirational Celtic theme employed in most of her books, Cindy Thomson is the author of two novel series and several non-fiction books. A genealogy enthusiast, she writes from her home in Ohio where she lives with her husband Tom near their three grown sons and their families. Visit me on social media, join my email list to download a free novella!

Irish Wolfhounds in Legend and Lore

Schedule:

Come pet the Wolfhounds in the Culture area Saturday and Sunday

Talks will be given:
Saturday 1:00-1:50pm
Sunday 1:00-1:50pm

For millennia, these amazing dogs were found only in Ireland. They belonged to the elite – kings and chieftains. These dogs are important in many Irish legends. Magical wolfhounds with a human spirit? Yep. Come hear a few of the stories. Then we will examine the wolfhound’s history in Ireland from 33 A.D. until the 1920s, becoming a proud symbol of nationalism in a country longing to be free.

Presenter: Cú & Craic Irish Wolfhounds of Ohio

Come see the magnificent Irish wolfhound, the tallest breed in the world. For millennia, these dogs were found only in Ireland; they belonged only to kings and chieftains. Their nickname is the Gentle Giant because they are so sweet and mild. Please come and pet them; maybe you’ll get an Irish kiss. Our club’s name means “hounds and good times.”

Parade of Kilts

Schedule:

Friday and Saturday 6:30 pm and immediately after Mass on Sunday

Parade of Kilts – Wear your kilt, show your Celtic Pride! A call to arms – Men of the kilt, join us! Do you own a kilt? Are you full of Celtic pride? Are you looking for the perfect opportunity to show this off? Join us under the Cultural tent Friday and Saturday evenings at 6:30 p.m. and immediately after Mass on Sunday (around 11:30 a.m.) for the Parade of Kilts. Bagpipers and flag bearers will lead us through the festival grounds in a display of Celtic pride unseen in these parts for a generation or more.
Presenter: United Irish of Dayton

Irish Music Sessions – All Day

Schedule:

The Riley School of Irish Music Session Tent will be playing nearly all day Saturday and Sunday – come listen in the Culture Area!

Come join Irish Musicians, of all skill levels, as each pulls up a chair to join in jigs, reels, and the energy that comes with a community-driven Irish session.  Whether you’re an experienced player or just starting out, our tent is the perfect place to come and play, listen, or simply soak up the rich, vibrant atmosphere of a true Irish session!  Bring your own instruments, or borrow one of ours. You never know, you may just get the opportunity to sit down and play right along with some of your favorite artists and headliners. So come join us for a toe-tapping, heart-pumping, unforgettable experience that will leave you feeling uplifted and inspired. We can’t wait to see you there!

Presenter: Riley School of Irish Music

Founded in 1996 by Susan Cross Gilligan, the Riley School of Irish Music is a community of children, teens and adults dedicated to the pursuit of Irish traditional music. We are dedicated to preserving and promoting the rich cultural heritage of Irish music. We offer a wide range of classes and workshops for students of all ages and skill levels, from beginner to advanced. Our experienced instructors specialize in traditional Irish instruments such as the fiddle, tin whistle, and bodhran, even traditional Irish singing.

Scottish Highland Dancers

Schedule:

Saturday 5:00-5:50pm

Join the St. Andrew’s society of Dayton- Scottish Highland Dancers for interactive Ceilidh dancing and a demonstration and interactive highland dancing!

Presenter: Scottish Highland Dancers

We are a small dance group that practices in the Dayton area. Our teachers are Aimee Frantz, Erin Breen, Rachael Ryckman. We also have a teacher in training. We typically perform several times a year with festivals around the area and some of our students compete in Ohio and surrounding states. Scottish Highland Dancing is the perfect combination of art and sport. You do not have to be Scottish to participate in this type of dance. Boys and girls of all ages and skill levels perform and compete together throughout the year at local, national, and international events. Wearing the traditional kilt and dancing to bagpipe music, dancers develop the skills that will give them valuable experiences that can have a positive impact throughout their lives.  Find us on Facebook and Instagram.

Tales of the Irish Heart

Schedule:

Sunday 4:00-4:50pm

Storyteller & the Irish Wake: The Irish Wake attempts to explain in a family-friendly way many of the customs and traditions associated with the 3-day period of mourning as it was observed in Ireland.

Presenter: Cathy Jo Smith

More information about Cathy Jo’s stories and the Irish Wake info can be found at www.irishteller.com

The Banjo in Irish Music

Schedule:

Sunday 3:30 – 4:20

Presenter: Randy Clepper

Multi-instrumentalist Randy Clepper is in demand as a performer of Irish traditional music on cittern/bouzouki, fingerstyle acoustic guitar, tenor banjo, and hammered dulcimer.

The Potato Famine and the Coming of the Irish to America

Schedule:

Saturday 12:00-12:50 pm

Ireland awoke to the beginning of the Great Hunger in 1845. Experience the heartbreaking stories of the Irish during the five long years of the Potato Famine. While it was a time of great injustice when more than one million Irish died, it also became a tragic blessing for over one million Irish who fled to America and survived. As an Irish storyteller and author of the Irish Crossings Trilogy, Terence O’Leary’s quest is to keep the famine story alive and acquaint modern day Irish-Americans with the tragic but also triumphant history of their Irish ancestors.

Presenter: Terence O’Leary

An Irish-American author, who was born in Chicago, Illinois, but spent his teenage and adult life in Northwest Ohio. Mr. O’Leary’s five critically acclaimed, realistic coming-of-age novels focus on teenagers facing a family crisis. Irish Crossings: Danny’s Story and Irish Crossings: Caitlin & Paddy’s Story are fictional accounts of his family’s struggles during the heartbreak of the Irish Potato Famine. Aside from sharing his novels during the festival, Mr. O’Leary will also talk about life in Ireland during the time of the Great Hunger. He will discuss how the Potato Famine not only changed the destiny of Ireland, but also America.

The Sport of Hurling: 3000 years of tradition and passion

Schedule:

Saturday 4:00-4:50pm
Sunday 2:00-2:50 pm

Hurling, one of the two national sporting games of Ireland, is an outdoor team game of ancient Gaelic Irish origin.  Join Greg Bebbington for a fascinating presentation and learn about the 3000 years of history of the fastest field sport in the world.

Presenter: Greg Bebbington

Originally from Broadford, Co. Clare Ireland, Greg Bebbington started playing the Irish sport of hurling at the age of 6. He is now a resident of Dayton and currently plays for the Cleveland Hurling team.