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Massachusetts Celebrates Irish Heritage Month

Culture

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Posted by Massachusetts Office of Travel and Tourism

In Massachusetts, Irish Heritage Month is celebrated for the entire month of March, a tribute to the state’s largest ethnic group.  According to the US Census, 20.5% of all residents claim Irish ancestry, one of every five people!

View Governor Baker’s Proclamation

Here are some ideas to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day season in Massachusetts.

Irish Music & Dance

On March 12, Celtic Crossings with Phil Coulter and Andy Cooney perform at Berklee Performance Center in Boston; the Greene O’Leary School of Irish Dance performs at JFK Library on March 12; Irish tenor Ronan Tynan performs at Cary Memorial Hall in Lexington on March 13; A St. Patrick’s Day Celtic Sojourn runs in Worcester, New Bedford and Cambridge, March 18-20.  Boston College Irish Studies Program hosts fiddle master Seamus Connolly and Charlie Lennon on March 28.

Irish Film

The 16th Irish Film Festival is a four-day celebration of Ireland’s growing film industry, held at the Somerville Theatre in Somerville.  You’ll see the latest films, documentaries and short features direct from Ireland.

Lawrence St Pats Parade

Parades

Even though St. Patrick’s Day falls on March 17, the parades take place on the weekend:  Cape Cod Patrick’s Parade (March 5); Walpole St. Patrick’s Parade, (March 11); Worcester County St. Patrick’s Parade, (March 13); Lawrence St. Patrick’s Day Parade, (March 19); Abington St. Patrick’s Day Parade, (March 20); Boston St. Patrick’s Day Parade, (March 20); Holyoke St. Patrick’s Day Parade, (March 20); and Scituate St. Patrick’s Day Parade, (March 20).

Irish Heritage

Learn about 300 years of Irish history here in Boston on the Irish Heritage Trail.  Local historian Ted Kulik gives 75 minute guided walking tours on March 18-20, starting at the Visitor Information Center on Boston Common.

John Boyle O'Reilly Memorial_Fens

The Kennedys

President John F. Kennedy and his extended family are a major part of the Boston Irish story, dating back to the 1840s.  To find out more, visit the JFK Library & Museum at Columbia Point in Dorchester to learn about the family’s proud Irish heritage.  Nearby is the Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the US Senate, which educates the public about our government.

JFK_1961_Shamrocks from Ambassador

Special Events

Old Sturbridge Village celebrates Irish Heritage on March 12-13 with Irish music, step dancing, stories and Irish traditional foods. The band Full Gael performs in concert.

Reagle Music Theatre in Waltham hosts its annual “Little Bit of Ireland Concert” featuring singers, storytellers, musicians and dancers, including the Harney Academy of Irish Dance.

Lawrence Heritage State Park hosts Irish Heritage Month in the City of Lawrence, sponsored by the Ancient Order of Hibernians.  Events include an exhibit on the Irish 1916 Uprising, plus lectures, films, live music and more.

Trustees of Reservations present “Fiddler on the Farm & the Whyte School Irish Step Dancers” at Powisset Farm in Dover on March 13.  Cape Breton Fiddler Clair Pettit performers.

Wachusett Mountain holds its annual Green Day Celebration on March 17, with live music, special foods and discounts on the slopes.

Boston Police Gaelic Pipes and Drums

Learn more about what’s happening in Massachusetts for St. Patrick’s Day.

You can also find the latest on the Commonwealth’s Irish community year round .

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