Irish celebration ‘not just about drinking green beer’

SURREY AND WHITE ROCK – Next Tuesday may not be particularly productive for those celebrating St. Patrick’s Day.

This year, the Irish holiday falls on a Monday (March 17).

“I think that just gives people an excuse to party twice, first on the weekend and then on Monday,” said Ray Fynes, lead organizer of White Rock’s Irish Festival, a month-long event.

The annual festival was launched in 2013 as a celebration of Irish music, poetry, workshops, contests, food, beverages and more. Complete event details can be found online at www.inwhiterock.com.

On St. Patrick’s Day, festival events include an outdoor beer garden set up across the street from Jimmy Flynn’s Celtic Snug, at 15065 Marine Dr., White Rock. Entertainers will include Surrey Fire Fighters Pipe and Drum band, Megan Steel Irish Dancers, Brad Hadley and Friends, Vancouver Orphans Male Choir and Vancouver Welsh Men’s Choir. Admission is $15.

Also on Monday as part of the festival, Ceili’s Modern Irish Pub in South Surrey will feature the Flanagans, Sionnaine Dancers, Feile Irish Band, Crescent Beach Pipe Band and folk fiddler Nellie Quine.

At Sawbucks Pub, the party will include the Crescent Beach Pipe Band and the Steel School of Irish Dancing.

Elsewhere on Monday, celebrated Irish-Canadian author Patrick Taylor will read from his latest book, The Wily O’Reilly: Irish Country Stories, at the Semiahmoo Arts studio at Centennial Park, starting at 7 p.m. On Saturday, Surrey Museum gets into the act with its annual Celtic Fest, with music, dance and other attractions happening from 1 to 4 p.m. Performers include Cambrian Circle Singers, accordionist Allen Barnett, Gerry Bradley and Sasha Pawluik of the Irish band Small Potatoes, Child of Sunset, White Rock Scottish Country Dance Club and Steel School of Irish Dance.

Later that evening, White Rock Irish Club hosts its annual St. Patrick’s Day dinner and dance at White Rock Elks Hall, with tickets priced at $40 per person.

Also on Saturday, Pat Chessell Band returns to Blue Frog Studios on Johnston Road for an evening of Irish party songs.

On Sunday afternoon starting at 3 p.m., hymns with Irish origins will be sung during an ecumenical hymn-sing event at the Anglican Church of the Holy Trinity, 15115 Roper Ave., White Rock.

“I thought up the idea, just to put the saint back in St. Patrick’s Day and remind everybody that it’s not just about drinking green beer,” Fynes said. “And it’s also meant to wave the flag a little bit, that we just don’t sing pub songs, we Irish can also write hymns.”

Later in the festival, a menu from the Titanic will be recreated and served at an event Saturday, March 22 at Aldo’s Karmel Cafe, 15777 Marine Dr., White Rock.

“Titanic has links with Ireland in that she was built in the Belfast shipyard, (and) her last port before heading over the Atlantic was Cobh, Cork,” Fynes noted. “She had 120 Irish passengers on board, of which 35 per cent perished…. My ulterior motive is a little consciousness-raising regarding Irish talents. We built what was the equivalent of the jumbo jet in shipping. In fact, piers had to be reconstructed to accommodate ships like the Titanic.” tzillich@thenownewspaper.com

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

(Black Press - file photo)
WEATHER: Enjoy the sun today, prepare for a week of rain

Clouds and rain to arrive by evening, Environment Canada forecasts

RCMP are looking for “an unknown man who wrapped his arms around” a female youth in Clayton Feb. 26. (Black Press file photo)
Youth assaulted by unknown man in Cloverdale

Mounties looking for ‘tall and thin’ Caucasian man in his 40’s with short dark brown hair

Framed photos of Travis Selje and other items fill the top of a dresser in his bedroom. (Photo: Tom Zillich)
Crown says defence case epilepsy caused fatal Surrey crash fails on balance of probabilities

‘She very clearly had some form of control over that vehicle,’ Crown argues

South Surrey’s Elizabeth and Marcel Bergmann – the Bergmann Piano Duo – will present another colorful Surrey Civic Theatres Digital Stage concert., premiering online March 11. Contributed photo
South Surrey pianists Bergmann Duo blend musical colours

Rhapsody In Blue meets The Red Violin in online concert

St. John Ambulance is looking for financial support in its bid to install 1,000 publicly accessible AED devices throughout British Columbia. The stands which hold the defibrillator also contain naloxone and first aid kits. Cost to equip and install each stand is around $8,000. (stock photo)
St. John Ambulance aims to install 1,000 publicly accessible AEDs across B.C.

First of two defibrillators planned for Crescent Beach already in place

Abbotsford’s Kris Collins turned to TikTok out of boredom when the provincial COVID-19 lockdown began in March 2020. She now has over 23 million followers on the video app. Photo: Submitted
Internet famous: Abbotsford’s Kris Collins is a TikTok comedy queen

Collins has found surprise stardom alone with a phone

A Vancouver restaurant owner was found guilty of violating B.C.’s Human Rights Code by discriminating against customers on the basis of their race. (Pixabay)
Vancouver restaurant owner ordered to pay $4,000 to customers after racist remark

Referring to patrons as ‘you Arabs’ constitutes discrimination under B.C.’s Human Rights Code, ruling deems

Approximate location of the vehicle incident. (Google Maps)
Vehicle incident blocking Coquihalla traffic in both directions

Both directions of traffic stopped due to vehicle incident

Judith Uwamahoro is Black, approximately 4’7″ tall, 80 pounds and has short black hair and brown eyes. (Surrey RCMP handout)
UPDATED: Lower Mainland 9-year-old located after police make public plea

Judith Uwamahoro went missing Friday at around 4 p.m. in Surrey

Five-year-old Nancy Murphy wears a full mask and face shield as she waits in line for her kindergarten class to enter school during the COVID-19 pandemic on Tuesday, September 15, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Variant of concern linked to COVID-19 outbreak at three Surrey schools

Cases appear to be linked to community transmissions, but schools will remain open

BC Ferries experienced heavy traffic on Feb. 27 following cancellations the day before due to strong winds and adverse weather. (Black Press Media file photo)
BC Ferries sailings fill up quickly after Friday cancellations due to high winds

Waits expected on Swartz Bay-Tsawwassen route, Horseshoe Bay-Departure Bay route

Nanaimo children’s author and illustrator Lindsay Ford’s latest book is ‘Science Girl.’ (Photo courtesy Lindsay Ford)
B.C. children’s writer encourages girls to pursue the sciences in new book

Lindsay Ford is holding a virtual launch for latest book, ‘Science Girl’

Pig races at the 145th annual Chilliwack Fair on Aug. 12, 2017. Monday, March 1, 2021 is Pig Day. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress file)
Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of Feb. 28 to March 6

Pig Day, Canadian Bacon Day and Grammar Day are all coming up this week

Staff from the Marine Mammal Rescue Centre, passersby, RCMP and Nanaimo Fire Rescue carried a sick 300-kilogram steller sea lion up the steep bluff at Invermere Beach in north Nanaimo in an attempt to save the animal’s life Thursday. (Photo courtesy Marine Mammal Rescue Centre)
300-kilogram sea lion muscled up from B.C. beach in rescue attempt

Animal dies despite efforts of Nanaimo marine mammal rescue team, emergency personnel and bystanders

Most Read