From Staff Reports
A celebration of Celtic culture is coming to Tennessee’s oldest town for the 5th annual St. Paddy’s Celebration on Saturday, March 19. Discover everything from Highland Games to live Irish music and green beer to a fun run when Jonesborough celebrates Saint Patrick’s Day.
Join the Appalachian Highlands Celts in Storytelling Park from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. as they bring Highland Games to Jonesborough. Enjoy demonstrations from members of the group and attendees can try their hand at being a Highland games athlete. The Appalachian Highlands Celts will guide attendees through the safety of performing in the games and show step-by-step techniques. Visitors can try their hand at the stone throw, weight over bar, archery and spear throwing.
Meet and greet with Highland calves from Happy Hens and Highlands from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. in front of the Christopher Taylor House. Attendees will get a hands-on experience, learn more about the breed and have a chance to get photos with a Highland Cow.
The kids are sure to enjoy crafts, face painting and storytelling. Kids activities are from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., and they include:
- Face painting by Sweet Face Designs By Jessica in the plaza of the Storytelling Center
- Storytelling and balloon twisting with Judy Butterfly
- Kids craft with the McKinney Center
- Paint rocks with Jonesborough Rocks
There will be a mini craft village with local artists and craftsmen showcasing a variety of handmade wares beside Storytelling Park in the courtyard. There will also be Bent Tree Spring Farm doing black smith demonstrations from 12 p.m. to 3 p.m.
Take part in Paddy’s Dash: Brew Fun Run starting at 4 p.m. The run will begin at the International Storytelling Center and go to Depot Street Brewing for a free small pour of beer or root beer, then head back to the Internaitonal Storytelling Center for food, libations and live Irish music! The Fun Run is for all ages and there is no fee to enter. Participants are welcome to walk/jog/run the route. After the run, participants are encouraged to stay for Shamrockin’ on the Plaza. Participants can make a monetary donation to the Washington County Animal Shelter, then runners will select a picture of a shelter animal to place on their back. The runner who receives first place will receive a gift basket and the winner’s chosen pet will receive one as well. The gift baskets are provided by Rob Weber with People’s Home Equity.
Get into the St. Paddy’s spirit with the premier Irish traditional band of East Tennessee, Sigean, as they take the stage during Shamrockin’ on the Plaza in front of the International Storytelling Center from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. The group’s seven members create a foot-stomping blend of traditional dance tunes and moving ballads through acoustic instruments. Sigean has performed at the Knoxville Irish Festival, Bristol Rhythm and Roots Reunion Festival, Big Stone Celtic Festival and many others.
During Shamrockin’ on the Plaza, enjoy a beer garden brought by Main Street Cafe and Catering, Depot Street Brewing and Tennessee Hills Brewstillery. Main Street Café and Catering will also provide a special menu of Irish foods consisting of bangers and mash with onion gravy and beef stew. Starting at 4 p.m., food and drinks will be served.
Step back in time with the Heritage Alliance by taking a Town Tour at 1 p.m. Tour tickets are $5 and can be purchased at the Chester Inn Museum, located at 116 West Main Street. They will be open from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Attendees are encouraged to arrive dressed in kilts, leprechaun outfits or simply all decked out in green.
Shamrockin’ on the Plaza is sponsored by Main Street Café and Catering and Jonesborough Area Merchants Association (JAMSA). For more information about Jonesborough’s St. Paddy’s Celebration, visit Jonesborough.com/St.Paddy or call (423) 753-1010.