With its colorful, vintage buildings and structures casting an ideal backdrop, historic downtown Long Grove proudly presented another year of its famous Irish Days festival to kick off September! All eyes were smiling over Labor Day weekend once again for the 3-day family-friendly celebration of Irish culture, music, merchants, food and of course, beer. Visitors strolled the town’s brand new walkways and enjoyed bagpipers, folk bands, and Irish dancers and contests.
This one-of-a-kind St. Patrick’s Day on Labor Day experience took place in the heart of town, Fountain Square, and included some of Chicago’s top Irish musicians and dance troupes, such as: The Tooles, Beamish, The Shannon Rovers Bagpipe Band, Trinity Irish Dancers, Academy of Irish Music, and many more. Thousands turned out to take in the sights and sounds at Irish Days. Those who attended were even privy to the infamous Irish Dog Competition, where pooches who dressed the part were crowned Irish Doggie King, Queen, Prince and Princess, and the Best-Looking Men’s Legs in a Kilt contest – always a crowd favorite!
Irish food vendors like Celtic Pretzel and Harrington’s Catering and Deli were on hand to fuel visitors with hand-made pretzels, hot corned beef sandwiches, fish and chips, and other traditional foods. Additionally, there was an area selling freshly tapped Irish-themed beers and non-alcoholic drinks to quench thirsts young or old. While the “Wee Ones” area hosted Irish-themed crafts and face-painting for kids, the Gaelic Tent promoted awareness of the Irish language and genealogy.