Is it the first time you and your family will be joining us at the Dublin Irish Festival? Here are some great tips to help you enjoy all the Festival has to offer!

  • Buy your tickets early. Visit www.DublinIrishFestival.org prior to August 4 to receive a great discount on your tickets. Pay online, print at home and just bring the paper to the Festival!
  • Kids 12 and under are free! The Wendy’s Wee Folk Area is filled with free crafts and entertainment while the Pot O’Gold Playland area requires a $10 wristband to enter. Inflatables, a climbing wall and mini-Gaelic games will be fun!  Be sure to bring some spending money for treats and souvenirs.
  • Park in Metro Place and enjoy the shuttle! Take 270 to exit 17A and turn right onto Frantz Road and right into Metro Place. You’ll see the signs for the shuttles and they run on a continuous loop so you’ll be having fun in no time! The Dublin Irish Festival also offers a Bike Valet service in two locations — so enjoy some of Dublin’s great bike paths and come on two wheels!
  • Beverage tokens are sold in different lines that the actual beverages. Soda, wine and beer all require tokens — with the exception of the Whiskey Tasting Sessions. You are allowed to bring two sealed non-alcoholic beverages (up to a total of 1 liter) per person in a soft-sided cooler into the Festival.

    Sand Sculpture being formed.

  • Seek out the quieter spaces at the Festival. Enjoy petting a Celtic Canine, listen to a traditional Irish story, strum a harp or watch the Sand Sculpture evolve before your eyes!
  • Be sure to watch some Irish Dancers! Consult the map at the Festival for times and stages and watch the feet fly to the rousing music. (Yes, those ARE wigs the girls are wearing!)
  • Save enough time to listen to some impressive music – at each stage! Usually in the shade, these music tents are fantastic places to sit awhile, enjoy some Festival food and hear a variety of music. With multiple performances throughout the Festival, there is music for everyone!

Come join us and have fun at the Dublin Irish Festival August 5-7!

 

~Post by Katie.

Can’t get enough Irish Attitude? If you wish the Dublin Irish Festival (August 5, 6 & 7) lasted all year long, take the opportunity to enhance your experience with the Irish Academy. In its 8th year, the Academy will play host to a wide variety of classes that highlight Irish music and culture. A brief description of the classes can be found below, with more details on the website.

  •  Beginning Bodhran: Learn this classical Irish instrument from a true Irishman and internationally known instrument maker. Bodhrans will be provided or available for purchase. Instructor: Michael Vignoles. Cost: $50.
  • Tin Whistle (Beginner Level): Who better to take lessons from than a multi-winner of the Irish Music Competitions in the United States? Instructor: Brian McCoy. Cost: $50.
  • Storytelling: Help preserve an old tradition from someone who experienced the seanachie (Storyteller) tradition firsthand when he lived with his grandfather in the Hills of County Kerry (Ireland). Instructor: Batt Burns. Cost: $50.
  • Bodhran, The Melody and Us (Intermediate/Advanced Level): Learn the master exponent of a subtle and sympathetic emphasis to bodhrán accompaniment from an original member of Téada. Instructor: Tristan Rosenstock. Cost: $60.
  • Flute (Intermediate/ Advanced Level): This founding member of the band Dervish and Irish music maven from a very young age is sure to teach all you need to know about one of the cores of Irish music. Instructor: Liam Kelly. Cost: $60.
  • Singing Workshop in English and Gaelic: A class with one of the most popular Irish traditional musicians and son of one of the most musically acclaimed Irish families is sure to be a surprising treat! Instructor: Séamus Begley. Cost: $60.
  •  Stylistic Features of Irish Fiddling (Intermediate/Advanced Level): An exploration of some of the techniques and traits associated with Irish fiddling, demonstrated with the aid of archival recordings taught by founder of noted group Téada. Instructor: Oisín Mac Diarmada. Cost: $60.
  • Fiddle (Intermediate/Advanced Level): A fantastic class from an Irish-American and National Heritage Fellowship Award-winning fiddler is sure to make you want to dance! Instructor: Liz Carroll. Cost: $60.

Classes will be held on Friday, August 5 from 9:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m., with a one hour break for lunch, in the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Dublin. Classes range from $50-$60 per person and all students must be 12 years or older to participate.

To register for classes, you will need to print off the registration form and mail it in with a check or your credit card information.

 

~ Post by Lexi

You may have heard something about this little annual event we have coming up, here in Dublin, Ohio.  It does draw a few people to town. Okay, DIFboatenough of the downplay. The HUGE annual event that I’m referring to is, of course, the Dublin Irish Festival.  And–after 21 years–it has grown into such an AMAZING event, that it draws nearly 100,000 people to town for its 3-day run. 

If you’ve never been, you really need to put this on your bucket list. Lucky for you, this weekend (July 31-August 2) marks the 22nd anniversary of the Festival.  It features 7 stages of nonstop music, Irish dance, a Marketplace with imported goods, cultural activities (bet you’ve never been to an Irish Wake before–circa 1800s?!), food, drink and much more.  The Dublin Irish Festival  has TWICE been named a “Top 100 Event in North America” by the American Bus Association (2005 & 2009)–and for good reason.  You’ll be hearing more about DIF (as we’ve come to refer to it) this week … here on our blog, on the Festival’s blog, and in the local and regional media.

Now that you have DIF on your calendar–we want to remind you to bring your camera.  Not just for the many great photo opportunities, but because one of your shots just might earn you a free weekend getaway in Dublin or some other cool prizes.  Our “Capturing the Irish Attitude” photography contest ends next Monday, August 3 — giving you time to send us your top photos from the event or from any place in Dublin, Ohio.  You can submit up to 5 entries per person.  See additional contest rules.  (Entries should be emailed to: piccontest@irishisanattitude.com.)  Check out the entries we’ve received so far.  Need more incentive? Here’s what you could win:

Grand Prize:
-Weekend overnight stay for two at the Hilton Garden Inn Dublin (plus breakfast)
-$20 gift certificate from Ha’penny Bridge Imports of Ireland
-$20 gift certificate from MJ’s Candy Bar
-A Dublin Irish Festival T-shirt and visor ($32 value) from Two Rivers Logowear, LLC

Individual prizes for Honorable Mentions:
-A gift card to Jeni’s Splendid Ice Cream
-A gift card to Sisters Sweet Shoppe
-A gift card to TehKu Tea Company
-A gift card to Our Cupcakery

___________

-post by Mary

 

Dublin OH Irish Festival While undergoing the rebranding process a couple of years ago, we gleaned lots of great information about our visitors via strong research. One of the main things we learned was that, with a name like Dublin, visitors want and expect more Irish.  Some of that was easy–we just refocused our messaging to highlight what we already have … one of the nation’s largest and best annual Irish Festivals (okay, THE best fest, in our minds); world class golf (including links style courses designed with the British Isles in mind); Irish pubs and restaurants; Irish imports and a Historic District surrounded by rolling rock walls that put one in mind of a quaint village in Ireland.

With the huge shift in tourism to hands-on experiences, we began developing Irish experiences for group tours and business groups. These include Irish dance and Penny Whistle classes, afternoons with an Irish fiddler in a pub–or a storyteller at a tea room. We even created a Four-Leaf Clover Scavenger Hunt through the Historic District for overnight groups. These experiences were so well received within the first 18 months, that we created a second wave of new experiences like Irish “Tastings and Toastings” and “Manor House Meals” programs.  These, too, have been well received … with the group markets.

The challenge for us is to create (or inspire among local businesses) new products for the leisure traveler that are available on any given day of the year. Most of the experiences we developed for groups require a large number of people for it to happen–making it difficult to convert that into an experience for an individual, couple or family.

We’ve come up with several Irish offerings for visitors. Many of our restaurants have added Irish-inspired products to their menus. (So we’re doing the food thing really well.) Ha’penny Bridge Irish Imports welcomes visitors. The owners will gladly (upon request) offer a walking tour of their store with a little education about Irish collectibles, travel and more. 

But–here’s where we need your help. What kinds of Irish experiences would YOU like to do in Dublin? What kinds of Irish cultural activities or exhibits or activities would entice you to make a weekend trip to Dublin, Ohio?

Dublin (OH) Irish Festival Dancers

Dublin (OH) Irish Festival Dancers

Exciting day .. we’re doing a trial run of one of our new Irish Experiences for group tours. (We love experiental travel. Helps make a trip more memorable-don’t ya think?) Anyway, we’ve drafted members of our local Dublin, Ohio hotel sales teams and some meeting planner friends to be our guinea pigs. We’ll be partnering with the folks at our Dublin Whole Foods. They’ve created this fun program that pairs samplings of Irish cheeses, butters, teas, etc. with a little education about the process of making these Irish products. Afterwards, we’ll get them to do an evaluation.

We’re in the second wave of these Irish experiences, developed initially for motorcoach groups. Since then, we’ve expanded these offerings to corporate groups, associations, meeting planners, spousal groups–and some even for leisure visitors.  People love ’em. We’re having lots of fun with this.  People told us, “Your name is Dublin. We want more Irish.” We listened (and still are).  We are not Dublin, Ireland. Don’t pretend to be. Irish is an attitude here. 

We’re always looking for new “Irish Experience” ideas.  Enlighten us. What kind of Irish experience would YOU like to do (in Dublin, Ohio)?