Category Archives: St. Patrick’s Day

The One on St. Patrick’s Day

Happy St. Patrick’s Day to all, but especially to those who Irish dance in Utah!

In the spirit of the day, I’d like to bring you local artists who really represent all the good things we love about Irish music. I love our local musicians and hope you will join me in supporting them.

Wayward Molly

Wayward Molly
courtesy Wayward Molly

When you combine Mona Stevens, Allison Ottley, Jani Gamble, and Nicki Singleton, magic is made.

The ladies of Wayward Molly mix a heady concoction of bluegrass, folk, country, blues, classic rock and roll, and gospel; and blend it with the smooth strains of Celtic longing. It all adds up to a delicious cocktail for the ears. This gal is hooked!

Just take a listen and you’ll see why these ladies are fast becoming a favorite of mine.

David’s Jig/Hoop Reel | Wayward Molly


courtesy CrossStrung

What do you get when you have a family of talented musicians? You get CrossStrung, one of Utah’s most exciting acoustic groups. Five musicians, twelve instruments, tight harmonies, hot instrumentals, and on occasions three of them can be seen playing on the same instrument at the same time. This family band enjoys performing a variety of music including Celtic, bluegrass, folk, country, and gospel adding their own unique style.

Colin Botts

Colin Botts
courtesy Colin Botts

Music has taken Colin Botts around the world, having studied guitar from gauchos in Argentina, concertina and bouzouki from traditional musicians in Ireland, and fiddle from gypsies while traveling through Romania. In 2013 Colin was awarded a masters degree in Irish Traditional Music Performance from The University of Limerick, Ireland.

Listen to the entire album below.


Salt Lake City St. Patrick’s Day Siamsa Schedule

This weekend is huge for Irish dancers and musicians in Salt Lake City. Because Saturday, March 15, a Siamsa will be held.

What’s a Siamsa? Siamsa means entertainment or amusement, in Irish. Our interpretation of a Siamsa is basically a party with hours of Irish dance, music, and food. And what’s better than that?

Union Pacific Bldg
courtsey The Gateway

The 2014 Salt Lake City Siamsa will be held at 10:45 a.m. in the Gateway’s Grand Hall at the Union Pacific Depot. Located at 400 West South Temple, this beautifully renovated and restored depot is “an important part of Utah’s history, serving as one of the outstanding architectural structures in Utah.” It’s truly stunning.

The Siamsa follows the parade, and boasts three stages of non-stop Irish entertainment. New to the event this year, musicians are invited to bring their pipes, fiddles, whistles, and bodhran to help celebrate at a traditional session beginning at 2:30 p.m.

The following is a list of Irish dance groups and musicians, the times they will be performing, and on which stage:

Grand Hall Dance Stage (inside)
11:00 a.m. Acadamh Rince
11:45 a.m. Rinceoiri Don Spraoi Irish Dancers
12:45 p.m. Scariff-Hardiman
1:20 p.m. Learn The Siege of Ennis with Harp
2:00 p.m. An Dragan Ceilteach
Shamrock-walk for the Kids at 11:30, 12:30 and 1:40

Music Stage (Thaifoon)
12 noon Red Branch
12:55 p.m. Republican Pub Players
1:50 p.m. Jim O’ The Mills
2:30 p.m. Sing-along & Session

Patio Stage (outside)
11:45 a.m. Jim O’ The Mills
12:25 a.m. Harp Irish Dance Company
1:05 a.m. Red Branch
1:45 a.m. Scariff-Hardiman’s 8-Hand Team
2:00 p.m. An Rogaire Dubh

Don’t forget that Irish food, drink, and items will be for sale from vendors.

We always look forward to dancing at the Siamsa and hope you’ll join us. It’s sure to be a grand time!

Featured photo courtesy Farris Gerard.

Salt Lake City St. Patrick’s Day Parade

2014 Salt Lake City St. Patrick’s Day Parade


The parade begins promptly at 10:00 a.m. on the morning of Saturday, March 15.

Parade Route

Through the Gateway in downtown Salt Lake City. Parade units line up at 400 West and 200 North, queuing up northward. Folks line the streets starting at 200 North, although the best viewing is in the Gateway. The parade units will proceed south on 400 West, west on 50 North, then take a jog down Rio Grande Street through the Gateway. I’m told the viewing stand will be located right around 100 South on the west side of the street, but don’t quote me on that!

Rinceoiri Don Spraoi will be entry #21.

Salt Lake City St. Patrick's Day Parade Route

How to Get There

Rinceoiri Don Spraoi Irish Dancers strongly recommend that you make a point to come downtown early and, if at all possible, take public transportation.

TRAX: All stops near The Gateway are in the “Free Fare Zone” and $1.75 in all other zones. Take Route 701 or Route 702 “University Line” to the ARENA Stop or Planetarium Stop.

FrontRunner: Fare – $2.50 base fare, $.50 for each additional station (maximum fare from Ogden to Salt Lake City is $5). Stop at Salt Lake City Central Station and take TRAX Route 701 or Route 702 “University Line” to the Planetarium Stop, or ARENA Stop. These TRAX stops are in the “Free Fare Zone.”

For times and more info, please visit


The Gateway offers your first hour of parking FREE.

Self-parking is conveniently located in the Summer and Winter Parking Garages, accessible from 200 South and 100 South. Parking is also available on the Surface Lot just north of South Temple and the parking garage off 500 West behind Old Navy.

Gateway Parking Rates:

  • 1 Hour or Less: Free
  • 2 Hours or Less: $1.00
  • 3 Hours or Less $3.00
  • 4 Hours or Less $5.00
  • Over 4 Hours $7.00

Featured photo by Farris Gerard.

10 Sweet St. Patrick’s Day Treats

Yesterday I had some pretty sweet free party printables for you. But what would a party be without some tasty treats? Am I right?

Today I have a bunch of fun party food to serve up for your St. Patrick’s Day festivities!

  1. Rainbow Poptarts, homemade version. These little babies are filled with a fresh fruit filling and topped with a drizzle of rainbow icing. -via Babble.
  2. Gorgeous Andes Mint Chocolate Chip Fudge. -via Sallys Baking Addiction.
  3. Rainbow Pudding that looks so colorful and fun! This one might be a new kid favorite. -via Makezine.
  4. Grain and Gluten Free Mint Chocolate Cookies. Which are more like an ooey gooey brownie. -via Texan Erin.
  5. Rainbow and Cloud Cakepops that are almost too cute to eat. -via Munchkin Munchies.
  6. Peppermint Patty Gooey Cake Bars. OMG. -via Inside BruCrew Life.
  7. Rainbow Fruit Skewers are beautiful and a healthy option! – via Babble.
  8. Four Leaf Cupcakes with a darling gumdrop top. -via Parents Magazine.
  9. Wow! Look at the color in these Rainbow Slice Cookies. -via Good Life Eats.
  10. Clover Krispies Treats. Because clovers. And Krispies treats. -via I Heart Naptime.

Free St. Patrick’s Day Party Printables

Free St. Patrick's Day PrintablesSo, you want to have a St. Patrick’s Day party. And why wouldn’t you? St. Patrick’s Day is THE perfect party holiday! But how do you decorate beyond the color theme of green?

There are some really amazing resources out there for party decor and favors. I’m bringing you my favorite 8 today.

  1. Amanda’s Parties To Go offers a fantastic set including lots of great printables like a banner, centerpiece sign, cupcake toppers, drink flags, treat bag toppers, drink bottle wraps, and Hershey Kiss circles, too!
  2. And take a look at the fun items from Chickabug. Water bottle labels, straw flags, patterned papers, and an extra-large printable circle that’s perfect for centerpieces or a door sign.
  3. Love The Day always has adorable printables. This tag is a new favorite.
  4. I love sugar skulls and Craft Dictator has St. Patrick’s Day themed skulls! They also offer shamrocks and celtic knots.
  5. Who can resist the glittery goodness of these cupcake toppers by Party Planning Center?
  6. Simple As That has a cute rainbow pop favor printable for your rainbow themed party!
  7. Hostess With The Mostest seriously makes the cutest things for parties. I love the Rolo candy wrapper! Also included are cupcake toppers and treat  labels, mini water bottle label, and fold over bag labels.
  8. Little Sprout Creations has a sweet tag to print and an idea that reminds me of Bonnie, one of our amazing dancers. The treat bag with rainbow chocolate covered Oreos is just a-dorable! I’m counting on you to make these Bonnie.

The Rinceoiri List of St. Patrick’s Day Activities

It’s finally here! St. Patrick’s Day season is upon us!

And just how are we getting our Irish on in 2014?

Rinceoiri Don Spraoi Irish Dancers will celebrate St. Patrick’s Day by doing what else? Dancing!

Irish Dance Utah Marines St. Patrick's Day Parade 2013
St. Patrick’s Day Parade 2013 with US Marines courtesy Farris Gerard

We’ll start the day off in the Salt Lake City St. Patrick’s Day Parade. The parade winds it’s way through the streets of the Gateway downtown. Follow that by a rousing bit of Irish dance in the Grand Hall during the Siamsa. A few hours later we’ll make our way to Ogden for the Shamrock Gala in which we’ll delight our audience with more dancing to support the fundraiser. To top off the night? Steiny’s! We’ll be doing a little pub style Irish dance right on their amazing wood floor.

At A Glance – St. Patrick’s Day activities in the Salt Lake City area:
Celtic Night 2014

Friday, March 14, and Saturday, March 15, at 7:30 pm.
The Bridger Folk Music Society presents Celtic Night 2014 a benefit concert for CacheHumane Society and Four-Paws Rescue at the Ellen Eccles Theater, in Logan. This St. Patrick’s Day celebration will feature, our good friends, Inishfre Irish Dance and Leaping Lulu collaborating in an engaging mix of Celtic songs, reels, jigs, and impeccable Irish dancing. We’re super excited that one of our dancers will be dancing in the show with Inishfre; break a leg Hannah!

Ellen Eccles Theater, 43 South Main, Logan.
Reserved seating prices are $13 to $20.
Visit them online or call (435)752-0026.

2014 Salt Lake City St. Patrick’s Day Parade


Saturday, March 15, beginning at 10 a.m.
The annual Salt Lake City St. Patrick’s Day parade, sponsored by the Hibernian Society of Utah, will wind its way through the Gateway. The theme this year is “Gift of the Gaels … A Legacy of Legend and Myth.”

2014 Salt Lake City Siamsa

Saturday, March 15, Rinceoiri Don Spraoi Irish Dancers will be performing at 11:45 a.m. After the parade there will be a Siamsa, or big party, in the Gateway Grand Hall.  Loads of Irish dancing and music on the stages, food and drink (adult and otherwise) in the hall, and various vendors with Irish items for sale in booths throughout. Doors for the Siamsa open at 10:45 a.m. Entertainment continues until 4 p.m.

St. Paddy Fun at Hogle Zoo

Saturday, March 15, 10:00 a.m. Legend has it, that St. Patrick banished all the snakes from Ireland. But our keepers want to know WHY? Join us for a day of St. Patrick’s Day fun as you learn about snakes in our Small Animal Building, and go on a St. Patrick’s Day treasure hunt for “gold”.  Don’t forget to dress in green for $1 off regular admission.

Keeper talks in the Small Animal Building at 11 am & 1 pm.

Young Dubliners at The Depot

Saturday, March 15, Doors open 7 p.m., show at 8 p.m. The Young Dubliners will be rockin’ The Depot, 400 S. West Temple, with special guests Swagger and Brother. Tickets are $23, or $26 on the day of the show. Visit the website or call, 801-467-TIXX or 800-888-TIXX.

“There are no gimmicky drinking songs. This is like a pint of honest rock music with a shot of Irish flair dropped in for extra kick.” -Spokane Inlander

“The Los Angeles-based band of Irish- and American-born rockers still busts out the Guinness-spilling anthems like nobody’s business.” -Idaho Statesman

Celtic Celebration at Peery’s Egyptian Theater in Ogden

Saturday, March 15, 7:30 p.m. Wasatch and District Pipe Band begin the celebrations with Celtic Beat Feet of Fire and Idlewild gracing the stage for an incredible night of song, dance, and revelry. Come and throw back a cold one in the theater, Guiness will be available at Peery’s Egyptian Theater’s annual Celtic Celebration, 2415 Washington Blvd. in Ogden.  Tickets $12, $10 for students and seniors. Visit the website or call 801-689-8700.

A Mass in Honor of St. Patrick

Sunday, March 16, time TBA. A mass in honor of St. Patrick will be held at St. Joseph the Worker, 7405 Redwood Rd. A corned beef and cabbage dinner, and an evening of singing and music follows at the parish hall.

SLC Area Irish Pubs

If you’re one to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day by having a pint or two with friends, there are several Salt Lake City area Irish themed pubs:

  • Piper Down, an Olde World Pub, 1492 S. State St., 801-468-1492
  • Murphy’s Bar and Grill, 160 S. Main St., 801-359-7271.
  • Green Street, 602 E. 500 S., 801-532-4200.
  • Leprechaun Inn, 4700 S. 900 E., 801-268-3294.
  • MacCool’s Public House, 400 South Foothill Blvd, #166, 801-582-3111, additional locations in Layton and Ogden.
  • The Republican, 917 S. State St., 801-595-1916.

We hope you enjoy our list of things to do for St. Patrick’s Day 2014 in Utah!

*Updated to include a missed link.

Utah’s Irish Dance March Madness Begins!

For Irish dancers, March Madness means dancing, dancing, and more dancing

It’s St. Patrick’s Day this coming Sunday. For Rinceoiri Don Spraoi Irish Dancers, that means plenty of dancing.

This year, dancers started off March dancing for the annual Shamrock Gala, a fundraiser to benefit Youth Impact, in Ogden on March 9.

“Since 1992 Youth Impact has been serving youth who reside in Ogden’s inner-city neighborhoods. The program started with less than a dozen young people who were originally brought together by their participation in a program called the Ulster Project.”

“The Ulster Project was designed to bring young teens from Ireland of Catholic and Protestant faiths together here in the United States. Teens from Ireland were placed in host homes with teens of the same age and faiths. The concept behind the project was to enable the participants to engage in a month of constant activity, discussions and the cultivation of lasting relationships. Ultimately, once the Irish teens returned home a bridge of communication and understanding for each other would be in place.”

Youth Impact’s current director was an American counselor during the 1992 Ulster Project. Today, Youth Impact positively impacts the lives of over 200 at-risk youth. Rinceoiri is proud to be a part of their fundraiser each year and thoroughly enjoyed performing Saturday night.

And what would any St. Patrick’s Day be without dancing in a pub?

Steiny’s in Ogden is just the place to put your back up against the bar and “tread the boards” so to speak. Quickly becoming an annual tradition, dancing at Steiny’s is the perfect end to fun day. Dancers love the wood floors, pub goers love the ambiance the dancers bring each St. Patrick’s Day season. Afterwards, dancers stay to grab a quick bite and chat. If those dancers happen to be Sarah Bang or Brooke Curnow, they’ll also be scanning the eleven flat screens for some hockey highlights. This year Steiny’s didn’t disappoint. Great crowd, fun dancing, and good craic afterwards.

“The floor is just brilliant to dance on,” exclaimed Charlotte Fitzgerald. “So lovely.”

And to top it off, there was a birthday in the house. Alyssa turned a bright shade of pink as the entire pub began singing “Happy Birthday” to her. A first timer to the Ogden performances, she beamed, “That was fun! That was so much fun!”

Rinceoiri truly had a great start to the season Irish dancers love most and look forward to continuing the fun with a host of dancing opportunities throughout the Salt Lake Valley on Friday, and the annual St. Patrick’s Day parade and Siamsa on Saturday.

See our scheduled list of performances by clicking here or going to Performances, then 2013.

Irish dancers rock the KSL morning show on channel 5

Although 5:30 is a bit early in the morning, Rinceoiri Don Spraoi Irish dancers are always ready to dance. And this morning was no exception.  The group enjoyed a little early morning television spot on KSL Channel 5 Utah. In the clip above, you can see the dancers doing a number entitled, “Tip Reel” which is a group dance that also lets the dancers step out and show off a little.

The rest of St. Patty’s Eve was spent doing performances around the Salt Lake Valley, a total of six for the day.

“It’s great sharing our talents with community members, ” Charlotte Fitzgerald said after dancing her fourth performance of the day. “I’m really proud to be Irish every day, but especially today.”

Rinceoiri Irish dancers unveil new dresses in celebration of their 15th year

Dancers in the Performing Group of Rinceoiri Don Spraoi Irish Dancers were excited, even giddy, about the arrival of completed school dresses. As many Irish dancers will tell you, it’s all about the dress. At Rinceoiri it’s less about the dress and more about the dancing and the friendships. But a new dress doesn’t hurt.
Dresses for the performers have changed and evolved over the past 15 years at Rinceoiri Don Spraoi. From turtlenecks and green skirts, to velvet and lace frocks, to the embroidered dress we see today. The latest incarnation has remained the traditional forest green associated with the group, but will have the shape and structure of what people most associate with traditional Irish dance.
When deciding on a new dress, the board of directors for the group wanted something that would be a little more on the traditional side. Because Ireland doesn’t have an official national costume, their work was cut out for them.
“We wanted to go with something that was recognizable as an Irish dance dress, but not like the latest styles competitors are going with now,” said Stephanie Russell, longtime dancer. “Something closer to what people think is traditional.”
Charlotte Fitzgerald agrees. “The newer styles don’t remind me of home at all, ” the Dublin native winced. “I want to represent my home, where I grew up dancing as a child.” She points out some of the flashy glitter-laced numbers, with ruffles like ballet tutus and neon colors. “Those dresses just don’t remind me of home.”
The group hired Debonair Dancewear to create their new look. Debonair has been in business locally since 1983 and pride themselves “on being able to deliver exactly what you… envision as the perfect performance attire.” Finding a professional organization was important to the group as a whole because it meant less time worrying about dresses and more time doing what they loved best, dancing. 
“In the past, dancers or parents were creating the costuming and there just wasn’t a uniformity.” Brooke Curnow said. “It’s great to have licensed professionals to work with. The pressure on dancers and parents is completely alleviated by outsourcing the work.”
The new dress will not only be a more traditional shape, but will include embroidery for the first time. Something that couldn’t have been done in the past due to cost and lack of experience. The costuming had included applique work as a cheaper alternative.
Teacher Ben Curnow stated, “Celtic knotwork was the norm decades ago. You’d have a really heavy and colorful dress that had a lot of embroidered knotwork. Now you don’t see it that much. We wanted to go back to that style because it looks great on stage. It looks more Irish.”

Embroidery designs on dance dresses were originally of traditional Irish origin, many coming from the Book of Kells and Irish stone crosses. The knotwork in the pattern on Rinceoiri’s new dress is said to symbolize the continuity of the friendships made in the group.

The creation of new dresses marks the 15th anniversary of Rinceoiri Don Spraoi Irish Dancers in Utah.

Performers will dance in their new dresses for the first time at the Annual Shamrock Gala for Youth Impact in Ogden. They will unveil them publicly at the St. Patrick’s Day Parade and Siamsa at the Gateway in Salt Lake City, on Saturday, March 17, 2012. 
St. Patrick’s Day.
“I can’t wait,” smiles Laura G. holding her dress. “It’s gonna be awesome!”
Where Irish dance comes first!