Thirty-five years of a passion for the great traditions of Irish culture has made the North Texas Irish Festival one of the largest Celtic cultural celebrations in the country. In 2017, the North Texas Irish Festival celebrates with its largest festival yet, entitled “Texas Grown – Irish Roots,” to acknowledge the Lone Star State’s role in preserving, celebrating and furthering Irish culture in the U.S. North Dallas Gazette readers can win free tickets to
Produced annually by an army of music-loving volunteers, the Southwest Celtic Music Association Inc., the North Texas Irish Festival is known for bringing in hundreds of performers from Ireland and all over the world to entertain festival-goers here in North Texas. Mark your calendar for March 3-5 when a 35th Annual North Texas Irish Festival lights up Fair Park with dining, dancing, music and revelry, unlike anything you have yet seen.
“This festival began as a giant commotion when fans overran one of our favorite Irish bars to listen to their favorite bands,” said Sheri Bush, president of the Southwest Celtic Music Association Inc., the all-volunteer organization that produced the North Texas Irish Festival and provides music and dance scholarships to local children. “That quickly grew into our festival at Fair Park, where we could share this love of music and dance with all of North Texas. It has only gotten bigger each year.”
Music, dancing, whiskey tastings, blacksmithing demonstrations, horse displays, Celtic storytelling, animal rescue groups, Shepherd’s pie, Irish stew, dozens of activities for kids and child-friendly entertainment, and chef demonstrations are all found at this family-friendly festival that includes 13 stages of entertainment.
Gates open on Friday evening, March 3, at 6 p.m. Hours are 6 to 11 p.m. on Friday; 10:30 a.m. to 11:30 p.m. on Saturday, March 4; and 11:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. on Sunday, March 5.
Tickets will be available online in February at www.ntif.org. Admission is free on Friday from 6 to 7 p.m.; $10 after (50 percent off coupons online at www.ntif.org). A one-day ticket is $20 on Saturday and $15 on Sunday at the gate, while a two-day ticket is $25 and a weekend pass is $30. Discount tickets will be available at area Tom Thumb and Albertsons stores in February. Children 11 and under are free when accompanied by adult family member. Seniors over 65 or current military members (with valid military ID) receive $5 off all gate prices. Dogs are allowed in on a short leash with a $1 requested donation to animal rescue groups supported by the festival. Leprechauns (in full ceremonial dress and carrying pot of gold) are free.
NDG readers can win free tickets to the North Texas Irish Festival by checking in to the Facebook and Instagram accounts of the North Dallas Gazette.
Parking is available in and around Fair Park, or attendees can take the DART (take the Green Line!) to the front entrance of Fair Park and the North Texas Irish Festival. Detailed directions and parking tips are available at www.ntif.org. The public can call (214) 821-4173 or visit www.ntif.org for more information or to volunteer to work at the festival.