Don’t be Irish Only on St. Patrick’s Day

A few years back a family member invited us to an Irish musical festival. Having no plans for the Saturday we took them up on the offer and found a new genre that we loved.  Usually for one weekend in September we transfer from being Dutch to finding our Irish side.  This year we expanded our Celtic side over Labor Day weekend also.

Michiana Celtic Fest

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Club Carlson had a triple points promotion on stays and the family had a desire to eat some seafood so we took a weekend over to the South Bend area.  The Country Inn and Suites is decent for a “mattress run” to earn some points and Red Lobster is about five minutes down North Main Street.

Sunday September 4th was the Michiana Celtic Festival in Howard Park. Downtown South Bend is about a fifteen minute drive from the Country Inn and Suites.  There was street parking and a large parking lot adjacent to Howard Park was half full when we arrived around 11:30.

Admission was $5 for adults or $10 for a family.  We paid $10 for our family of 3 for the day, the only extra costs were for drinks or food as parking was also free. Hours are 11 a.m to 6 p.m.

There were many family friendly activities for all ages. There was a face painter doing her artwork.  The balloon artist made fantastic swords for little kids who spent the afternoon sword fighting each other.

Michiana Celtic Fest

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There is one large tent set up with many tables to enjoy the bands.  We listened to local favorite Kennedy’s Kitchen for a while and we love An Dro.  The Caledonia Kilty Pipe Band did a great presentation with the pipes and drums!

We watched the Bryan Verkler Invitational Highland Athletics Competition for several events like hammer throw and sheaf toss. The caber toss is a family favorite.

Michiana Celtic Fest

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They also offered a chance to try our hand at axe throwing.  Where do you get to do that?  We all took a try and I was happy to say we all stuck our axes in the target after a little instruction.

Learning to throw an axe.

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She hit the target.

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Another crowd favorite was the Border Collie demonstration with sheep.  With whistles or a few verbal commands the dog works the sheep through gates or a pattern. Very impressive and extra fun when one sheep made a break for it and escaped the fenced in area.  You could almost see the dog smiling as he gave chase through the highland game field herding the wayward sheep around.  Even funnier was the adult men trying to help corral that little guy.  After a few minutes the sheep returned through an opened gate back to his flock.

Michiana Celtic Fest

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We spent around four hours at the Celtic Festival.  They had a small market set up with items for sale and great food by Fiddler’s Hearth. The festival is put on by the Michiana Celtic Society each year.

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