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For Immediate Release, August 1, 2016 

Media Contacts:

Mary Coffey, Fest Chair: (317) 250-3828

Erin O’Rourke, Fest Marketing: (314) 749-5122


Public Contacts:

Irish Fest Info Line: (317) 713-7117

830 2017 Press Release IIF

22NDAnnual Indy Irish Fest Sept. 14-17, 2017

Preview Pub Night, Thursday, September 14th

$7 Early Bird Admission on Friday, September 15 Highlights Affordable Entertainment

Indy’s Irish Fest returns to Military Park Sept. 14-17 for its annual celebration of the state’s Irish heritage. The preview pub night is returning, featuring two Celtic rock bands on Thursday, and patrons again will be able to enjoy free admission. Thursday night’s bands include Indy festival newcomer, The Narrowbacks, a six-piece band hailing from New York, delivering a raucous show with driving punk rock in its heart and the soul of an old Irish folk band. Thursday also includes the return of a fan favorite, Whiskey of the Damned from Milwaukee.

Indy Irish Fest is excited to welcome a variety of new international and national talent to Indy this year, spanning a mix of music genres. Highlights include:

The High Kings, from Dublin Ireland, call back to the heyday of ballad groups, such as The Clancy Brothers and the Dubliners. The four Irish singers have been moving the Irish ballad tradition into the here and now since their formation ten years ago, enchanting crowds of old and young alike all over the globe.   With their blend of rousing and reflective, energetic and insightful music, the High Kings have been smashing the Billboard World Music chart and selling out venues within hours. 

JigJam, a multi-award winning quartet from the heart of the midlands in Ireland. Blending the best of traditional Irish music with bluegrass and Americana in a new genre which has been branded as ‘CeltGrass’, their onstage energy along with their virtuosic musical ability has captivated audiences throughout the world.  This sharply dressed outfit delivers an energy-fueled, foot-stomping live performance. All multi-instrumentalists, JigJam interchange between banjos, guitars, fiddles, mandolins and double bass onstage which creates an experience which is pleasing to both the eye and the ear.

Aofie Scott, a Dublin folk singer songwriter, with an impeccable pedigree as a member of the legendary Black Family, which includes her mother, Frances, and her aunt, Mary, Aoife is steadily rising to the top of the traditional and folk music scene, while garnering acclaim and recognition both in Ireland and abroad as she hones her craft and continues to be a force to be reckoned with on the Irish Folk and traditional scene.  Her sublime voice is a thing of beauty that stops people in their tracks.

Nova Scotian sisters, Cassie and Maggie have been lighting up the world with their unique blend of traditional and contemporary Celtic instrumentals and vocals. Appearing on stages across North America, the UK, and Europe the sisters have enchanted audiences far and wide with lively fiddle, piano and guitar arrangements, stunning sibling vocal harmonies in both English and Gaelic, all complemented by their intricate and percussive step dancing style. 

Dulahan is an anomaly in Celtic music, displaying an unwavering commitment to the strength and message of their original Celtic music. They pay homage to the traditional music that their signature sound has evolved from and are proud to bring a fresh new sound to the to the Celtic music scene for the past 15 years.

 Returning this year are favorites Chance the Arm from Kansas City for those Celtic Rock/Punk fans, and The Kells, a standard on the Indy Irish Fest scene.

 For those old enough to partake in adult beverages, Indy Irish Fest continues to have great options for the weekend. Local favorite New Day Meadery will be onsite and for those craft beer lovers, Sun King Brewery will be at the fest as the official craft beer provider.  Pints of their Irish Stout, Ring of Dingle, brewed especially for the fest, will be available for purchase. Irish standards Guinness and Harp will be present too.

The festival continues to be a great music festival bargain with advance sale tickets only $12. At the gate, attendees can save money with the festival’s early bird $7 admission from 4:30-5:30 p.m. Friday, September 15th, or Sunday morning, the 17th, with donations to the area food bank. 

Ticket Prices

Indy’s Irish Fest ticket prices are:

  • Adults (Advance Sale):                                $12/day
  • Adults (Gate Price):                                     $17/day
  • Students (14-18 with Student ID):               $12/day
  • Children (13 and under):                             $7/day
  • Children under 5:                                         Free


Festival Hours and $7 Early Admission Details

  • Thursday, September 14, 5:30 p.m. – 10:30 p.m.
    • (Free admission but non-perishable goods donations accepted)
  • Friday, September, 15, 4:30 p.m.-11:00 p.m. ($7 Early Bird Admission: 4:30 p.m.-5:30 p.m.)
  • Saturday, September 16, 11:30 a.m. to 11:00 p.m.
  • Sunday, September, 17, 10:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
    • (Early Bird Free Admission: 10:30 a.m.-11:30 a.m. with five canned goods per person benefiting St. Vincent DePaul food bank)


  • Thursday free admission for the special Preview Pub Concert Night (Canned goods for the food bank are encouraged)
  • Friday only: be at the gate early and get in for only $7! (4:30-5:30 p.m.)
  • Sunday only: admission is free when you bring a minimum of five non-perishable food items that benefit the St. Vincent DePaul Food Bank. (10:30-11:30 a.m.)

 New in 2017!

New this year is will be William Cahill, a celebrated Galway, Ireland, roof thatcher who emigrated from his native Ireland after completing a five-year thatcher apprenticeship. He lives with his family in Ohio and has designed and built thatch roofs throughout the United States and the Islands for more than 30 years.

The Celtic Caterer, Eric W. McBride, will be on-site all weekend offering Live Historical Celtic Cooking Demonstrations.   He makes various traditional Celtic Dishes with a modern flair right in front of a seated audience. They get to see real time camera images from an overhead camera onto a large color screen. All with a storyline explanation of how that particular dish evolved and what aspects in history influenced the creation of that favorite Celtic dish or flavorings. Then at the end of the demonstrations, patrons get to taste what was cooked on stage. 

Other Festival Highlights

Young and older visitors alike will enjoy plenty of added activities during Fest weekend. Throughout the weekend, the whole family can enjoy herding exhibitions, or stop by the Celtic Canine tents to see dogs representing Irish breeds, such as Irish Glen of Imaal Terriers, Irish Soft Coated Wheaten Terriers, Irish Water Spaniels, Irish Wolfhounds, Irish Red and White Setters and Kerry Blue Terriers.

The festival includes an Irish Market with 25+ vendors selling Irish wares; a cultural area with demonstrations & exhibitions.  A Kilted Mile takes place on Sunday with tremendous fun promised whether you’re running or just watching! Don’t miss the award ceremony for the runners with the best kilt, bonniest knees, best jig in a kilt and least likely to finish. 

See cultural exhibits that include information on the Easter Rising, Celtic Saints, Indianapolis Irish, and Irish feasts, celebrations and customs. Attendees will also be able to visit with local Irish and Scottish organizations.

Hungry visitors can choose from tempting treats such as Irish stew, shepherd’s pie, corned beef and cabbage, a variety of sandwiches, Irish soda bread and bread pudding, provided by Claddagh Irish Pubs, Johnson’s BBQ, Ruth’s Chris and more.

On Sunday, a 10:30 a.m. Celtic Mass will be held on the festival grounds. Gates open at 10 a.m. Visitors attending Mass or arriving prior to 11:30 a.m. receive free admission if they bring at least five canned goods per person to donate to the St. Vincent de Paul Food Bank.

Returning this year after crowd-pleasing past years will be a presentation and hands-on activities by Silly Safari, bringing animals and animal education to the event Saturday and Sunday.  

Youngsters can work off plenty of energy in the Wee Folk Area, featuring a craft tent, storytelling, a coloring contest, face painting and more. Wristbands, included in the gate cost, admit kids to a special area complete with games and other fun activities.

The Wee Folk Area is open 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Friday, 11:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Saturday and noon to 4 p.m. on Sunday.

For more information, visit or call the Indy’s Irish Fest Information line 317.713.7117


****Subject to corrections of fact

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