What’s CelticFest Mississippi and why do you do it?
CelticFest Mississippi is the main outgrowth of the Celtic Heritage Society’s mission to promote awareness and appreciation of the Celtic nations music, dance, and culture in Mississippi and the region. It’s gotten to be quite an event!
The Celtic Heritage Society (CHS) is a nonprofit organization run on 100% volunteer power. The CHS has no paid staff, and money raised at CelticFest pays the costs incurred while organizing the event. It also pays for other CHS projects, such as underwriting the Thistle and Shamrock program airing on Mississippi Public Broadcasting 91.3 FM.
When is CelticFest Mississippi?
CelticFest Mississippi is always the weekend after Labor Day, running three days: Friday night, Saturday, and Sunday.
CelticFests yet to come…
- September 9-11, 2016
- September 8-10, 2017
- September 7-9, 2018
- September 6-8, 2019
- September 11-13, 2020
Where is does CelticFest Mississippi take place?
Our festival takes place on the grounds of the Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Museum in Jackson, MS. It’s state property, is wheelchair accessible, and is an idyllic spot. We can help you get directions here.
What if it rains? CelticFest is a festival, so it’s outdoors, right?
We have it covered — literally! Most of the festival stages are indoors anyway, and we have a rain contingency plan, so CelticFest goes on RAIN OR SHINE!!!
Our vendors, some stages, and some workshop tents are outdoors, but everything else is inside (more stages, another workshop area, bathrooms…) You can bring food and drink inside/outside the buildings as you please.
Do we bring chairs or blankets?
All of the stages and workshop areas have chairs available, so no lawn chairs or blankets are necessary. However, if spreading a blanket on the grass is your thing don’t let us stop you!
Who is performing at this year’s CelticFest Mississippi?
Over 40 performers on multiple stages, from dancing to music to storytelling. At least two international caliber musical groups headline CelticFest each year. There are several workshop areas (dance, music, and heritage) free for festival-goers. The Regional Performer and Headliner pages of the Website has more details about our many performers. Be sure to download the schedule for when your favorite band is playing.
I hear you, but I need a visual. Are there photos available from previous CelticFests?
Sure, and you can see them on this website.
Is it pronounced KELticFest or SELticFest?
It’s a hard “C”, so KELtikFest is correct. The Romans identified the “Celtae” as one of the crowds they conquered in Gaul, and Romans pronounced hard “C”s. The Boston Celtics ™ are mispronouncing their own name. 😉
Can I buy tickets in advance or online?
Yes!!! We’ll post the link prominently on the front page for your convenience.
How much is the admission?
See our Information page for rates. (In the interest of preserving the webmaster’s useful lifespan, this information will be posted in one place)
What if I wanted to get in for free?
There are certainly ways to do so. We often give away free weekend passes (in pairs, bring a friend) on local radio give-aways. Or you could volunteer for a shift and get in free the day you work — we always need a good man or woman!
What times do the gates open and close?
Check out the Schedule page to see the times.
Should I bring the kids? Are there children’s activities?
Absolutely and yes! CelticFest MS is a family-friendly event, with plenty of things that all audiences can attend together. There’s even a designated Children’s Area with special activities for kids, staffed by volunteers (parents must be present) and in recent years, kid-specific vendors.
What’s “Celtic” about a ‘Moonwalk’?Celts first walked on the moon in about 530,A.D. when St. Brendan’s ship landed on the moon, making Celts the first people on the moon.
Is CelticFest wheelchair accessible? How about stroller-friendly?
The Ag Museum grounds are completely wheelchair accessible, have accessible bathrooms, and handicap parking. We can handle strollers, too.
Is there an ATM nearby?
An ATM is available onsite at the CHS booth.
Can I take pictures?
To your heart’s content. There is plenty going on, and plenty of things to capture your and your camera’s attention. You also have access to the rest of the Ag Museum grounds, and there are plenty of interesting things to fill your camera with!
Can I bring my Celtic dog?
We love animals, but the facility has a “no animals” policy in place to protect the 8000 attendees from allergies and bites. Service dogs are the only exceptions.
Will there be any First Aid on site?
Certainly. Security, too. It’s very safe.
What about Lost and Found?
If you have lost or found a child or personal property, please head for the CHS booth on the grounds (where the CelticFest Tshirts are sold!). We will do our best to reunite people and property. After the festival unclaimed items will be turned over to the Ag Museum’s front desk.
Where can I park? Is it Free?
The MS Ag and Forestry Museum has FREE parking shared with Smith Wills Stadium, to the west of the Museum grounds. Parking is uncovered, and handicap parking is available there.
If I come in from outa town, where should I stay?
We do have a host hotel, and there is an RV park across the street from CelticFest’s grounds. All of that information can be found here, on the general info page.
You have a Sunday church service?
In some years, we have a non-denominational service held on the grounds, and you can learn more about the service here.
I’m a Celtic musician. Are there any sessions?
Yes! There are ample opportunities for tune and song sessions on the festival grounds. Some of the very best tune sessions happen when the festival slows down at night. There is a scheduled song session Saturday evening in the Ethnic Building. And after the festival closes on Friday and Saturday, many musicians head for the host hotel’s lobby (The Cabot Lodge Millsaps). The hotel has loads of space to play and no curfew!
Does the Celtic Heritage Society have a mailing list?
We definitely do, and we use it to get the word out about CelticFest, concerts, ceilis (dance events), et cetera. We never do anything smarmy, like trading or selling email addresses. We LIKE you, so we keep that information safe! Mailing list sign up is here. We no longer send printed “postal” mailouts and newsletters, so be sure to sign up for the email list!
I’d like to volunteer to help . How do I do that?
Bless your heart! We always need a few good men and women. Visit our Volunteers page or contact Keegan Baldridge (email@example.com) to let her know when you can work and what areas you’re interested in.
I’d like to be a Vendor. How do I do that?
Harvey Kimble is the Vendor and Grounds Coordinator, with his finger on the pulse of the grounds. He knows exactly what the festival can incorporate. You can apply by submitting an application available on the Vendor page.
What about clans? We’re people, too.
If you want your clan to have a presence and a booth at the festival, contact Harvey Kimble, the Vendor and Grounds Coordinator. His contact info is on the Vendor page (link above).
I’d like to perform at CelticFest Mississippi. How do I start the process?
All performers undergo a committee review, so we will need a bio of the performing group and a representative recording of the performers who wish to come to CelticFest MS. You can post those materials to:
P.O. Box 5166
Jackson, MS 39296
If these materials are available online, that works too. Just email the CelticFest MS Performer Review Committee (firstname.lastname@example.org).
How do I contact the Festival?
The Contact Page can sort you out!