BY BETH GOHS, CONTRIBUTOR
Boyne City will celebrate Nine years of the Irish Festival this year, paired with the hundred-year celebration of the Easter Uprisings, a rebellion between the Irish and England in 1916.
What began as just a dinner developed into a week-long that now includes a baking contest, Irish story time, music, a lecture on Irish history and many more events.
“Boyne City had its 150th birthday celebration and not a word was said about the Irish heritage
that they had,” event organizer Linn Williams said.
“The Irish heritage was the settlers, the Millers, came in from the east coast.”
She added, “He (Mr. Miller) came from Ireland. And, looking for a place to settle, came in by Charlevoix and someone took them out on the lake and they ended up on this side of Lake Charlevoix.”
Williams said Miller’s wife had a dream about the Boyne River before she saw it, which is how it got its name, and so they decided to settle in what is now known as the vibrant Boyne City.
“I thought there should be a recognition of that and that’s why I decided there should be an Irish Festival,” she said.
The slew of events will begin Sunday, March 13 and last until the following Sunday, the 20th. The dinner is Friday, the 18th a five course dinner made of traditional Irish dishes and music for $17.
Williams said her favorite event was the dinner which is cooked by the High School Culinary Arts Program
“The food is great, the dancing is great the music is great and we just have a lot of fun,” she said. “We’ve had anywhere from 2-year-olds up to 90 year-olds participate. At the end we have a group dance, and anyone who feels they can shake a foot gets up and participates in an Irish jig.”
A new event this year will be speaker Dr. George Colburn who will host a presentation about the hundred year anniversary of the Easter Uprisings of Ireland.
“It was a rebellion of the Irish against the English rule,” said Williams. “I’m going to show a movie about the uprising, it’s called ‘Michael Collins.’ So, if people come to see the movie, they’ll have background.”
More information found at www.boyneirishfestival.com or by contacting Linn Williams at (231) 582-6858.
“I’m pleased with the way the program is shaping up this year,” Williams said. “We have something going on every day or every night, from Sunday to Sunday.”
Sunday March 13
1 to 3 p.m. Irish Singalong Session with John Richey and Friends, Boyne District Library Community Room.
Monday March 14
6:30 to 7:30 p.m Learn to Speak Irish for St. Patrick’s Day – Becky Kuebler, Boyne District Library Community Room.
Tuesday March 15
6:30 p.m. “Michael Collins” film showing, Boyne District Library.
Wednesday March 16
6:30 p.m Irish History Lecture/Discussion – “The Easter Rising 1916: Its Meaning Then and Its Meaning Now,” Dr. George Colburn, City Hall Auditorium.
Thursday March 17
• 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Business After Hours – Boyne Area Chamber networking event hosted by Lynda’s Real Estate Service, 27 S. Lake St.
Co-sponsored by Family Fare Supermarket.
Complimentary admission, hors d’oeuvres and refreshments.
• 5:30 – 9:30 p.m. Cafe Santé St. Patrick’s Day Celebration features Grand Rapids Irish folk fusion band The Saltbound, house-made corned beef Irish dinner, green beads, $3 Irish shots and logo glasses with Irish beer pints all day.
Happy Time Zone means $1 off beer, wine and cocktails from 3 to 6 p.m. Located at 1 Water Street.
Friday March 18
5:30 p.m. 9th Annual Irish Heritage Dinner featuring a traditional Irish feast prepared by the Boyne City High School Hospitality Program and live Irish music.
The dinner will be held at the Boyne City Eagles Hall, 101 River St. Tickets are $17 for adults and $7 for children ages 6 through 12.
Tickets are available online at www.boyneheritagefestival.com, or at the Chamber office or Country Now & Then/Up the Lazy River.
Saturday March 19
• Irish Step Dance Workshop, 9 to 10 a.m. – Boyne City Education Center (former Middle School) Culinary Arts Classroom, entrance on Main Street.
• Irish Story Time, 10 to 11 a.m. Fairy tales and myths, Boyne District Library,
• Soda Bread Contest and Judging, 11 a.m. – Boyne City Bakery (former Johan’s location), Entry forms at boyneheritagefestival.com.
• Irish High Tea, 2 to 4 p.m. – Local Flavor Bookstore, 125 Water St.,
• Boyne City Farmers Market, 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Tastes of Spring – It’s time to “Think Green,” in the Red Barn next to the Boyne District Library,.
Sunday March 20
1 to 3 p.m. Celtic Music Session
Join hostess Gaeyle Gerrie and other local musicians to hear Irish music at the Boyne District Library.
Musicians and listeners are encouraged to attend.
For info, contact Gaeyle at (231) 883-7664.
For more information and updates on events visit:
www.boyneirishfestival.com Or, call the Boyne Area Chamber of Commerce at (231) 582-6222.