About The Festival

The Sean-nós Northwest Festival celebrates and promotes three aspects of traditional Irish culture: sean-nós singing, sean-nós dancing, and the Irish language, otherwise known as Gaeilge. These cultural treasures are incredibly rare to find anywhere outside of Ireland. We aim to sustain a vibrant community for these and other Irish cultural arts (including storytelling, poetry, and decorative arts) throughout the Pacific Northwest.

The Festival offers a full weekend of classes and workshops as well a concert and social events. We don’t feature competitions or vendors - just fun classes on all things Irish. We encourage attendees to explore new topics in a safe and supporting environment. Ever wished you could dance a jig or cook a traditional Irish recipe? This festival is the place for you - we hope you’ll join us!

Set dancing class (photo by Michael Halley)

Set dancing class (photo by Michael Halley)

What Should I Bring And What Should I Wear?

Our festival is very casual. Jeans are completely appropriate. Since it is April in the Pacific Northwest, we recommend you wear layers to account for our ever-changing weather. We also recommend that you bring a notepad. If you're going to take one or more dance classes, you should bring a water bottle and appropriate shoes (character shoes, ballroom dance shoes, penny loafers, or men's leather dress shoes are good choices if you don't have dedicated dance shoes). NO METAL TAPS, PLEASE! Wood taps are fine.

What About Lunch?

The Greenery Café on campus offers multiple menu offerings each day and always has vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free options available. Everyone loved the lunch choices last year, and we hope you agree! We are not offering pre-paid lunch tickets this year. Just pay at the door (it’s the same price).

If the Greenery isn’t your style, you'll either want to plan to bring your lunch, grab something somewhere else on campus, or drive into town for something to eat. There are coffee shops on campus in addition to the Greenery, but no chain-type restaurants within walking distance.

Traolach O’Riordain teaches a language class (unknown photo credit)

Traolach O’Riordain teaches a language class (unknown photo credit)

Alicia Guinn and Shannon Dunne dancing, Felim Egan in background (photo by Michael Halley)

Alicia Guinn and Shannon Dunne dancing, Felim Egan in background (photo by Michael Halley)