With its colorful, vintage building and structures casting an ideal backdrop, historic downtown Long Grove proudly presents another year of its famous Irish Days festival Sptember 5-7. All eyes will be smiling over Labor Day weekend for the 3-day family-friendly celebration of Irish culture, music, merchants, food and of course, beer. Visitors are invited to stroll the town’s cobble-stone walkways and enjoy bagpipers, folk bands, and Irish dancers in addition to other entertainment like the popular Irish Dog Competition and the Men’s Kilt Contest.
This one-of-a-kind St. Patrick’s Day on Labor Day experience takes place in the heart of town, Fountain Square, and includes 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 (the full 3-day lineup can be found here). Another favorite sight at Irish Days is the Irish Dog Competition. All dogs are Irish on Irish Days, but those who dress the part are given extra credit. Each day, a panel of children judges will crown an Irish Doggie King, Queen, Prince and Princess. The contest is open to any dog whose owner enters them the day-of at the competition area located by the Long Grove Information Center (308 Old McHenry Rd).
Harrington’s Catering and Deli will return to fuel visitors with hand-carved corned beef sandwiches, fish and chips, and other traditional Irish foods. Additionally, there will be an area selling freshly-tapped Irish-themed beers and non-alcoholic drinks to quench all thirsts young or old. While a “Wee Ones” area will host Irish-themed crafts, face-painting, and games for kids, perhaps the most excitement and biggest laughs of the weekend comes each day at the Best-Looking Men’s Legs in a Kilt contest. Interested male contestants should wear their best kilt (or closest thing to it) and register at the event.
Last but not least, Irish Days features a Gaelic Tent in Fountain Square that promotes awareness of the Irish language and genealogy. Representatives from the Irish American Heritage center will be on hand throughout the 3-day weekend to discuss Irish cultural opportunities on the Northwest side of Chicago
For more information, call