Southern Illinois Irish Festival


By WSIL Events

Event Details

Date(s) & Time(s)::

Daily from September 19, 2014 until September 21, 2014

Location: Walker's Bluff


Event Description

The 18th annual Southern Illinois Irish Festival is coming the weekend of September 19-21. The opening concert in Carbondale on Friday September 19 features Irish singer-songwriter Danny Ellis. The outdoor Celtic Fair, on Saturday and Sunday September 20-21, is moving to a new location this year: Walker’s Bluff.

Danny Ellis grew up in an orphanage in Dublin, and that experience was the basis for his CD of original songs, “800 Voices,” as well as his recent memoir, “The Boy at the Gate.” He has also recorded several other albums of original songs. His concert will be at Cousin Andy’s Coffeehouse, located in the Fellowship Hall of the Church of the Good Shepherd, at 515 Orchard Drive in Carbondale. Doors open at 7:00, and the concert starts at 7:30. Admission is $10 for adults, and $5 for students age 13 and older.

The Celtic Fair at Walker’s Bluff will run from 11:30-7:30 on Saturday September 20, and from 12:30-6:00 on Sunday September 21. Access to Walker’s Bluff is from Cambria Road, since part of Reed Station Road is closed. Admission to the Festival grounds will be $7 per adult, and $5 for students age 13 and older, 12 and under free. Attendees are encouraged to bring lawn chairs.

There will be two stages of music both days, with performances by St. Louis Irish Arts, The Dorians, Roisin Dubh, The Gordons, Dennis Stroughmatt and Creole Stomp, Fiddle Rick, The Rural Kings, Lee Murdock, and more. The Festival includes food and drink for sale, merchandise vendors, Scottish Highland Games demonstrations, Medieval Combat Society, pipers Les Lannom and Sean Folsom, bouncy houses for children, an Irish children’s village, Professor Play, and Liam the World’s Largest Leprechaun.

The Irish Festival programs will be distributed on newsstands the weekend before the Festival. Volunteers willing to help out on the Festival weekend should contact Sarah Kroenlein at 618-521-9251.

The Southern Illinois Irish Festival is seeking arts and crafts vendors for the 2014 Festival, to be held on the grounds of Walker’s Bluff on September 20 and 21. Merchandise can be of any type, not necessarily Irish or Celtic. Potential vendors can contact Mike Shanahan at 618-549-3090, or by email at

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