Lowell's 31st annual Lowell Irish Cultural Week will take place starting March 9 and run through St. Patrick's Day.
Presented by the Lowell Irish Cultural Committee, the schedule of events will feature Irish-themed shows and activities, beginning with the Irish Cultural Week Opening Mass at 10:30 a.m. on Sunday, March 9, at St. Patrick Church (traditional Irish music will be performed there starting at 10 a.m.) at 282 Suffolk St. The Irish Parade starts at 11:30 a.m. and ends at City Hall, where Irish Person of the Year Lauris Donovan will raise the Irish flag. The Brunch in St. Patrick Church begins immediately after the parade; suggested donation is $5 for adults and $3 for children.
From 1 to 6 p.m. on Sunday, the Lowell Lodge of Elks will host a free day of traditional Ceili (Irish folk dancing), sponsored by the Ladies Ancient Order of Hibernians Division 1. The Elks Lodge is located at 40 Old Ferry Road.
On Tuesday, March 11, the Lowell Film Collaborative will screen the Irish musical film Once at 7 p.m. (doors open at 6 p.m.). Admission is free, with a recommended donation of $5. The screening will take place at the Lowell Beerworks at 301 Cabot St.
Film producer Robert Rafferty and historian David McKean will present a short film about life in the Acre called Made in Lowell: The Story of Lowell's Irish Community on Thursday, March 13, at the Lowell National Historical Park Visitor Center at 245 Market St. at 7 p.m.
The annual Irish Dinner Dance will take place Saturday night at Lenzi's Mill House at 810 Merrimack Avenue in Dracut, with cocktails starting at 6:30 p.m. Tickets are $37, and tickets for the $5,000 Lucky Leprechaun Drawing are $25. To purchase, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call the St. Patrick's rectory at 978-459-0561. The week concludes with St. Patrick's School students performing traditional and contemporary Irish songs on St. Patrick's Day at St. Patrick Church Hall at 10 a.m.
For information about Irish Cultural Week, contact the Irish Cultural Committee at 978-710-8523 and email@example.com and follow them on Twitter (@Lowellirish) and Facebook (facebook.com/lowellirish).
-- PETE MCQUAID