Something new is coming to the auld village green on Saturday, June 1 in the Community Park in Friendsville. The Garrett County Celtic Festival village (10 am–6 pm) continues to bring to life the traditions of Scotland, Ireland, Brittany, Cornwall and now, Galicia/Asturias. Our 2019 honored Clan Elliott has roots in Cornwall and Scything in Celtic Spain is demonstrated. And the herding Border collies are back, with sheep and ducks. The bairns (kids) enjoy a whole day of crafts, stories, music, play acting, athletics, and their own parade. Kids under 11 are free this year, kids 11-18 only $5. More craft vendors and variety of traditional food enhance the Celtic Marketplace. The Teelin School of Irish Dance and the Pittsburgh Scottish Country Dance Society join us for the first time and you can join in. Among the many musical performers are IONA, Aurora Celtic and Shanty Irish. Celtic Harp, four varieties of the small pipes on the Shamrock Stage, Highland Games competition on the Green, Clan gatherings, and the enchanting sounds of regimental Pipes and Drums transform this beautiful location on the Youghiogheny River into an 18th century highlands village.
(Much more, schedules, and discount tickets at gccelticfestival.com)
IN THE CHAUTAUQUA TENTS
John Miles is back with more tales to tell:
• He’ll enchant the bairns with the tale of Nessie, the Loch Ness monster at 11:30.
• What is the history of the tartan and what is the great kilt?
• Celtic Seasonal Festivals form the root of many later cultural traditions we all enjoy. And, do all Scots and Irish really have Scandinavian roots? He’s back with the Viking Colonization of the Isles.
What is all this about addressing and stabbing the Haggis? Enjoy this traditional Robert Burns tradition and join in the eating, if you like! Our festival Drum Major, Curt Mitchell presents.
The B&O Railroad in Maryland. Docent and Board member of the Irish Railroad Workers Museum, Cecilia Wright shares the lives of Baltimore Irish families with the B&O and its connections in Allegheny and Garrett Counties. In addition to talks around the state, Wright assists visitors with genealogy and helps host special events at the Museum.
Judith Clister, our Celtic historian, invites you to join the exploration of the Spirit Circle. Clister’s frequent trips to Ireland and Scotland to visit the ancient and sacred Celtic sites inform the presentation and discussion.
Have you ever heard a Gaelic waulking song? Ellen Sheffield Wilds is an historical researcher, author, spinner, traditional needleworker, and singer. Wilds, whose love of history, folk music and Gaelic, Scots, and Irish languages will enrich adults and children with what she brings to share about Gaelic’s unique history and cultural influence. And among the new story tellers this year are Katie and Otto Ross.
Kathy Wells, Clan Hay: “From Fiber to Fashion”. From sheering to weaving the fabric of the Pittsburgh Tartan for the St. Andrew’s Society, Wells presents how the official tartan was designed.
Celtic Instrumentation: Be sure to check in with talks by IONA and Bob Shank about the playing of ancient Celtic instruments today in Appalachia. And new this year on the Shamrock Room stage: Tracy Jenkins joins Greg Latta in presenting the variety of small pipes used in Ireland and Scotland. In our new Young Artist Series, Adrianna Grover Landis plays Hammer Dulcimer.
And, if you have Welsh roots, plan to visit the nearby village of Hazelton, WV, where many immigrant miners came to settle.
AND FOR THE BAIRNS: RAINBOW’S END CHILDREN’S PLACE
Among the many creative opportunities available to kids of all ages (Celtic crafts, elf gardens, costuming), children can register to play in the Rainbow’s End Highland Games, the caber toss and the haggis hurl among the events. They will hear tales and fables and meet owl and hawk, be regaled with stories of a legendary Scottish monster, be entranced by Celtic folk lore, sing Gaelic tunes, and perhaps participate in a play about a great Irish fable. It’s a day long family affair, with lots to do, hear and see. Bring the kids!
RAIN OR SHINE! Park grounds completely accessible for the disabled, parking right on site. Plenty of cover and seating available, but lawn chairs welcome.
Sponsored by the Maryland State Arts Council, the Garrett County Arts Council, and local business and individual contributions.