Vancouver CelticFest is a Celtic festival over St. Patrick’s Day week that usually includes concerts, whisky tastings, live music and street parties.
For information about other St. Patrick’s Day-related events in the Lower Mainland, click St. Patrick’s 2018. For details about CelticFest in 2018, see below.
CelticFest St. Patrick’s Celebrations
In 2018 CelticFest runs from Sunday, February 25th, until Saturday, March 17th.
2017 was the first in several years that there was no St. Patrick’s Day parade during Vancouver’s CelticFest festival. It’ll be the same again in 2018.
There was still the annual Celtic Village in 2017, however, although in a new location. There was also the usual selection of live entertainment offerings, Irish dinners and St. Patrick’s events at various pubs and restaurants around town. 2018 will again be the same, but with fewer activities.
Although running over a longer period of time, in 2018 Celticfest will be a scaled-back version of what it was last year, and even more scaled-back from what it was in previous years when it included the annual St. Patrick’s Day parade.
Presently scheduled for Celticfest in 2018 are one concert in late February and then four other music-related events on March 15th to 17th in the lead up to St. Patrick’s Day.
2018 Celtic Festival Schedule
The following are festival events scheduled for CelticFest in 2018:
- Sunday, February 25th, 2018 – a concert with the band Altan from Ireland at St. James Hall at 3214 West 10th Avenue. Tickets are $35.
- Thursday, March 15th, 2018 – an Irish Seisiun (i.e., an informal gathering of musicians) at the Billy Bishop Legion at 1407 Laburnum Street. All musicians are welcome and admission is free.
- Friday, March 16th, 2018 – Celtic Fest Ceilidh takes place at the Scottish Cultural Centre at 8886 Hudson Street. The night of Celtic performances is the main event for Celticfest in 2018 and tickets cost $25. Featured performers include the Celtic folk band Blackthorn as well as the BC Regiment of Irish Pipes and Drums, the Eire Born Irish Dance Company and the Scottish Dance Troupe.
- Friday, March 16th, 2018 – the all-male Vancouver Welsh Men’s Choir performs a St. Patrick’s Day concert at the ACT Theatre at 11944 Haney Place in Maple Ridge.
- Saturday, March 17th, 2018 – the all-male Vancouver Welsh Men’s Choir performs a St. Patrick’s Day concert at Christ Church Cathedral at 690 Burrard Street.
Vancouver’s Celtic Village (in 2017)
In past years, along with the annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade, the main event during Celticfest was the Celtic Village (which won’t be taking place in 2018 unless plans change).
In 2017 the Celtic Village took place on the Friday and Saturday of the St. Patrick’s Day weekend from noon until 11 pm. Admission was free for most of the time, but $10 for folk arriving after 7 pm.
In years prior to 2017 the Celtic Village took place between Robson Street and Nelson along Granville Street. In 2017, however, it took place at Robson Square and in the Vancouver Art Gallery’s South Plaza at Robson Street and Howe.
At the Celtic Village in past years live entertainment took place throughout the day on both the Friday and Saturday. There was live music, dancing, food vendors and all sorts of street market stalls and things to see.
For more information on the weekend event in past years, click Celtic Village.
CelticFest at the Blarney Stone
Also during CelticFest in past years a number of events have taken place at The Blarney Stone which is an Irish pub located at 216 Carrall Street in Gastown. In 2018 events will again be taking place at the Blarney Stone, but not officially as part of Celticfest.
St. Patrick’s Day-themed events at the Blarney Stone in 2018 include the following:
- Saturday, March 10th (2018) – the St. Paddy’s Festival Kick Off Party is an adults-only event and runs from 10 pm until 3 am and features music by The Shenanigans and DJ Zeus.
- Sunday, March 11th (2018) – Irish Family Day features an Irish brunch and family-friendly activities including stilts walkers, face painting, games and Celtic dancing.
- Monday, March 12th (2018) – Irish Appreciation Night features an hour of complimentary appetizers, two hours of Irish beverage sampling and live music between 6 and 11 pm. Free admission with advanced registration.
- Wednesday, March 14th (2018) – the Irish Trivia Event takes place between 7:30 and 9:30 pm.
- Friday, March 16th (2018) – the St. Patrick’s Day Eve Party features music by The Sheets and DJ Zeus.
For more information on the St. Patrick’s Weekend street party from last year at Robson Square, click Celtic Village 2017.
For more ideas on what to do with the family in mid-March, check out Top Free Spring Things to Do with Children.