Award-winning Irish storyteller to perform at Penn-Mar Irish Festival
If you go
What: Penn-Mar Irish Festival
When: 10:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday, June 20
Where: Markets at Shrewsbury, 12025 Susquehanna Trail, Glen Rock
Parking: Parking is available at the Markets at Shrewsbury and at St. Paul Lutheran Church across the street. Shuttles run all day.
Cost: Admission is $10 in advance or $13 at the gate. Children 15 and under are free.
Buy tickets: Tickets can be purchased in advance at Eventbrite.com or at The Markets at Shrewsbury.
More information: Visit PennMarIrishFestival.com .
It's not quite the same as a trip to Ireland. But with traditional Irish cuisine, award-winning Irish performers and Irish vendors, the Penn-Mar Irish Festival in Shrewsbury Township is the next best thing.
The 15th annual festival, which typically draws about 2,000 people, will feature contemporary and traditional Irish music and dance on two stages June 20.
New to the festival this year is the singing, dancing, story-telling bodhrán player Máirtín de Cógáin.
As a child growing up in Cork, Ireland with a family of 10, de Cógáin said he quickly learned that if he wanted to get anyone's attention at the dinner table, he had to be a good storyteller.
He practiced storytelling, learned myths and urban legends, and before he knew it, he was not only a storytelling master at the dinner table, but also on local and international stages.
On June 20, the two-time All-Ireland storytelling champion will bring his stories to York for the first time.
He'll perform a children's program in the morning and an all-ages program in the afternoon.
"I try to bring out an entertaining side of Ireland while at the same time giving people a snapshot of what Ireland is like," de Cógáin said.
He tells a lot of myths and legends from the sixth and 12th century that will give the audience a view of Irish culture, social history and geography.
de Cógáin isn't the only award-winning performer who will take the stage at the Penn-Mar Irish Festival.
John Whelan, who made his first appearance at the festival last year, is a seven-time All-Ireland champion for accordion. Twelve-year-old fiddler Haley Richardson, who will also return to the festival this year, won the competition twice in the under 12 age category in 2013.
"We rotate the entertainment every year to keep some favorites and bring in new entertainment to keep things fresh," organizer Mary Yeaple said.
Other performers include four regional Irish dance groups, New Freedom Irish folk band Tommy's Fault, Lancaster County group Magill, and a group of sisters from County Donegal, Ireland, The Screaming Orphans.
The entertainment lineup begins with traditional Irish performers, ballad singers and sing-along music and kicks up to a Celtic rock concert to end the night, Yeaple said. Central Pennsylvania Celtic rock band Kilmaine Saints will headline the concert at 7 p.m.
"If you like Irish music, there's something for all tastes," Yeaple said.
Prior to the concert, a children's tent will be open with games, crafts, face painting, caricatures and balloon twisting until 6 p.m.
During that time, about 33 vendors will sell Irish goods, including clothing, jewelry, music, books, pottery, photography, stained glass and more.
Irish food, such as fish and chips, shepherd's pie and turkey legs, will also be for sale.
"It's the day before Father's Day, so it's a great chance to pick up something for dad if he's a fan of anything Irish," Yeaple said.
10:40 a.m.: Opening Ceremony
10:45-noon: Haley Richardson, Dylan Richardson, Mikela Murphy, Dana Kondner and Samantha Suplee
12:30-1:30 p.m.: Tommy's Fault
2-3 p.m.: Magill
3:30-4:30 p.m.: John Whelan
5-6:30 p.m.: Screaming Orphans
7-8:30 p.m.: The Kilmaine Saints
11-11:30 a.m.: Máirtin de Cógáin (children's program)
Noon-12:30 p.m.: McGinley School of Irish Dance
1:30-2 p.m.: Broesler School of Irish Dance
3-4 p.m.: Máirtin de Cógáin (all-ages program)
4:30-5 p.m.: Ni Riain School of Irish Dance
6:30-7 p.m.: Hooley School of Irish Dance
Children's Activity Tent:
10:30 a.m.-6 p.m.: Games, crafts, face painting, more
12:30-2:30 p.m.: Caricatures by Mel Conrad
All day: Susquehanna Pipes & Drums