The Seven Celtic Nations

Ireland
Ireland

Wales
Wales

Scotland
Scotland

Galicia
Galicia

Brittany
Brittany

Cornwall
Cornwall

Isle Of Man
Isle Of Man

About Celtic Fest Vancouver Society

CelticFest Vancouver is a non-profit Society registered in British Columbia since 2004.

The Society's mission is to:

  • Bring together the local community in an annual festival celebration of Celtic Culture and the St. Patrick's Day Parade.
  • Deliver education on global Celtic heritage, art and cultural traditions.
  • Promote and showcase local and international Celtic music, dance, spoken word, theatre, film, art, crafts, food/beverage and Highland sports.

THE FESTIVAL

CelticFest Vancouver is Western Canada’s biggest annual Celtic festival.CelticFest is a rich cultural celebration of the seven Celtic nations’ kinship and community.The festival showcases the best of Celtic music, dance, spoken word as well as film, foodand fare and the much-anticipated St. Patrick’s Day Parade.

Founded in 2004, the cornerstones of CelticFest Vancouver are community, diversity, family and civic pride. CelticFest draws its artistic direction from some 5,000 years of Celtic history and culture. This young, vibrant event has quickly, and firmly, established itself as an annual springtime tradition in downtown Vancouver.

Since inception, CelticFest’s attendance has significantly grown year over year, drawing 250,000+ in 2008. With 99 stories about CelticFest resulting in over 8.2 million impressions, media coverage of the event has also increased dramatically.

In 2008, more than 2,000 people marched in the 5th Annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade. The five-day festival also featured 60 performances and events − 70% of them free − staged by 150 volunteers and supported by 50 generous businesses and organizations as well as all three levels of Government.

MILESTONES

  • MARCH 2004: With seed funding from the Downtown Vancouver Business Improvement Association, the first CelticFest was born. The response from the community, on the festival and Parade, was overwhelmingly positive and inspired us to turn it into an annual event.
  • 2005 Recipient of Vancouver Board of Trade’s Best Special Events Award.
  • 2006 Delhi2Dublin: Originally created by Beats without Borders for a one-shot performance at CelticFest in 2006, word of their foot stomping, high energy live set started to spread, and the project took on a life of its own. Since then, Delhi2Dublin has been busy gigging constantly, touring Eastern Canada and California, playing some of Canada's largest festivals. We are proud to have played a leading role in the growth of this production.
  • 2007 Recipient of Downtown Vancouver Business Improvement Association’s
    Annual Appreciation Award (organization category).
  • Record Media Coverage 2007: 99 CelticFest stories garnered more than 8.2 million media impressions.
  • 2007 Record Hits on festival Website: 2.75 ++million hits in less than 2 months.
  • 2007 Cape Breton Fiddler Ashley MacIsaac sells out the house.
  • 2007 More than 110 volunteers donate their time and spirit to CelticFest Vancouver.
  • 2008 The first International Celtic band is booked to perform at the festival.
  • 2009 Another FIRST is about to take place on March 13, 2009. The festival has commissioned local Celtic fusion band The Paperboys and Cuban salsa group Puro Son, to create a unique Celtic Salsa show. This will be a brilliant musical collaboration, bringing these two award-winning music groups together to perform on stage - as one.

KUDOS & TESTIMONIALS

These are some of the many wonderful comments we have received from the public and is what keeps us going!

Cultural celebrations like CelticFest and the St. Patrick’s Day Parade bring together the entire community in a vibrant setting, capturing the spirit and pride of our great city.

Larry Campbell,
Former Mayor, Vancouver


Just wanted to send an email on behalf of the North Shore Celtic Ensemble. They had just a wonderful time in the parade and in general. It was a tremendous day!! You probable already saw the photos...but they were featured in the Vancouver Sun the following day...as well as on the front page of the metro newspaper."24hours”…I took in a number of the venues including Tony McManus...he was amazing.

It was an excellent festival.

Take Good Care and shall be in touch next year!!

Leah
NSCE


My two children (ages 8 & 3) and I attended this years parade. Awesome job, it was great, lots going on, lots of great bands and music, some giveaways, but not too commercial. Being of Irish ancestry, St. Patrick’s is a day I cherish. It's a day to be proud, social, and tip a pint or two with your fellow man. The Street Fest (on Granville) was excellent, and my kids the music there and the kid's zone.

My only suggestion for the future would be portable toilets set up somewhere on Granville, or close proximity to the street fest. Other than that, I'm already looking forward to next year.

Great job by all volunteers, thank you.

Darren Ferris & family


"...I attend most of the public events and parades in Vancouver, and the one thing that sets CelticFest Vancouver apart is that it is the most inclusive celebration of its kind in the city. Rather than ‘participants’ and ‘observers’, there is a general atmosphere of relaxed bonhomie.

Based on my own observation of all the Civic events that occur in Vancouver, the CelticFest hosts the most participation and interaction between Vancouverites and as such, in my opinion, has found its place as an important part of the City’s culture.

Congratulations on a job very well done. "

Captain Robert MacDonald SBstJ CD
Chairman
'A Swarm of Drones


Congratulations on putting together such a fabulous CelticFest. There was something for everyone: singles, families, young and old alike.

We look forward to working with you at CelticFest Vancouver . . .

Sandi Green, Marketing Director,
Pacific Centre & Cadillac Fairview Corp.


Thank you so much for having us at CelticFest! It was a fun filled, dynamic and well run event! There was so much going on! All of us had a brilliant time! We would love to participate again next year; I felt the street and Tom Lee shows were a big success. ..

Lori Sherritt
The Tickle Trunk Players
(Performer)


We are just sending a wee note to tell you how impressed we continue to be with the Celtic Fest. Your volunteers are terrific! They are knowledgeable, helpful and very friendly.

We appreciate being part of this wonderful event and want to thank you and all those involved for putting together such a terrific function.

We look forward to our continued involvement next year!

Angus Scott
Liberty International
(Vendor in CelticFest Street Market)

Partners & Team

We could not achieve our mission were it not for the enthusiasm and dedication of our volunteers and the generous support we receive from our government partners and corporate sponsors. Without them, CelticFest Vancouver would not exist - we are proud to have such partners who share our vision and grateful for their funding and support.

Our Community Partners include: