Hundreds “celebrated the green” at Irish Night

A high-spirited crowd of approximately five hundred came out on March 1, 2014, to celebrate Irish Night and raise funds for the restoration of the carriage barn. TRAD, with faculty member and Celtic Music Master Damien Connolly, greeted the crowd with traditional Irish melodies. Special guest performer Sally Connolly joined TRAD and amazed the crowd with her skills on the Irish flute. Guests arrived early to decorate their tables in hopes of winning the optional table decorating contest. The Fairfield Gaelic Pipe Band officially kicked off the start of the evening’s events with their majestic sounds. 

Irish music and entertainment continued throughout the evening. Once Removed wowed the crowd with traditional Irish ballads and foot-stomping tunes. Champion award winning step dancers from the Sheeaun Academy of Irish Dance, under the direction of Moira Speer, presented a sampling of jigs and reels. The ever-popular Highland Rovers Band, featured entertainment for the night, did not disappoint. Lauralton Hall students from various step dancing academies joined the fun by performing the traditional St. Patrick Day set dance as well as some soft shoe reels. The Fairfield Gaelic Pipe Band returned for an encore performance with an incredible drum solo that cumulated with the entire band joining in for a memorable rendition of God Bless America.

The night’s emcee was Pat Speer of Once Removed who announced the winners of the Best Table Decorations Contest. Among the winning entries were an elaborate fountain beneath hover balloons, a leprechaun traveling through the forest looking for his pot of gold, a winding Irish countryside road complete with Irish blessings, and a towering sculpture of authentic Irish cheer—the first place winner. 

Rounding out the evening was the raffle which included sought-after prizes including an iPad, a flat screen television, and such Lauralton favorites as VIP parking at graduation and a dining hall certificate. Proceeds from the raffle are designated for the restoration of Lauralton’s 1864 carriage barn, the future Center for Performing and Visual Arts.

A special thank you to the Lauralton Hall Alumnae Executive Board for hosting the event, the generous sponsors and the student, faculty, and parent volunteers! Plans are underway for Irish Night 2015, scheduled for February 28, 2015. For details about next year’s event, to become a sponsor or to join the committee, contact Kathleen Kearns Donahue ’80 at or 203-877-2786, ex. 114.



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