CelticFest draws big crowd in Brandon

Published: Jun. 4, 2022 at 11:25 PM CDT
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BRANDON, Miss. (WLBT) - From Traditional Irish music to dozens of men and women walking around dressed in kilts, this weekend is all about honoring Celtic culture here at the Barnett Reservoir.

Thousands flocked to Lakeshore Park today to celebrate the 31st annual Celtic Fest to honor Celtic heritage and music.

“The Celtic fest is a fun experience,” said Kagan Doom, who attended the festival. “It’s a great way to experience other cultures’ different types of music and food and art.”

The festival featured traditional Irish and Scottish music on eight different stages.

Several well-known musicians and artists traveled from Austin, Texas, and even Belfast, Ireland, to entertain the crowd.

“They are some of the best traditional Irish musicians that I’ve ever heard, and we are so thrilled that they were able to come,” said event organizer Suezen Brown.

There were also plenty of fun games, including the highlands game. It requires some strong arms for throwing heavy metal.

“We throw it over the bar,” said festival participant Greg Pilling. “That’s the weight over bar event, so it’s a 42-pound weight that the lightweight division throws. We have to throw with one hand over the bar. Essentially what we do to train for it is we do a lot of throwing of heavy things and weightlifting. That’s what we do.”

Multiple vendors were also at Celtic Fest, selling everything from hand-crafted rocks to sparkly jewelry.

“This year, I decided to try my hand and be a vendor, and it’s been great so far,” said Jo Patterson. “I had a lot of compliments and just very receiving and enjoyed my time coming.”

Suezen Brown, who helped put on this event, says as we turn the door from COVID-19, she’s grateful that she and her staff could put on this festival that celebrates the Irish and Scottish culture.

“We just appreciate everybody that’s coming out and supporting this festival,” said Brown. “You know, you need people to make this happen, and we do it because we love it and we want to share it with other people, and so we’re appreciative of all the people that came out.”

Organizers say they are already planning to host a bigger and better Celtic celebration next year.

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