Celtic tradition holds that the harvest season brings all members of the Celtic community together in celebration. The Celts commemorated this bountiful time by sharing food, music, arts, cultural traditions and language. Passed down through generations, the harvest season is still widely celebrated by Celtic communities across the globe.
This September, a Celtic harvest celebration will take place at the Halifax Forum.
Rooted in tradition, the Celtic Cultural Society of Nova Scotia preserves, promotes and supports Celtic traditions, like the harvest celebration. Their free, annual showcase, the Halifax Celtic Festival, brings together Nova Scotia’s diverse Celtic community to appreciate and share their culture.
“In honour of the festival’s fifth anniversary, we adopted the Celtic harvest theme,” explained Rick Grant, president of the Celtic Cultural Society of Nova Scotia.
The five day celebration is hosted from Sept. 13 through 17, with their major events hosted at the Halifax Forum Multipurpose Centre. Local Celtic musicians and dancers take the main stage with toe-tapping tunes, while vendors and businesses display their merchandise, art or historical pieces. Kids cheer for the Celtic games and activities while their parents enjoy the authentic Celtic cuisine.
Beyond the main activities at the Forum, the Halifax Celtic Festival hosts a variety of events around HRM, such as their educational speaking session, Giving Celtic Context, at The Old Triangle Irish Alehouse.
“Youth initiatives and involvement is a major focus for this year’s festival,” said Grant. “Our goal is to spark the interest of the younger generation and encourage them to carry on the celebration of their Celtic roots.”
Youth events include a junior high school band concert hosted at the Woodlawn United Church, and a variety of youth dance and piping group performances at the Halifax Forum. Their major athletic event connects teams from all over the province to compete head-to-head in the Youth 7s Rugby Tournament.
The festival grows larger with each passing year, drawing over 2,000 people to the variety of cultural events.
“We celebrate the many Celtic nations, but as one family,” said Grant. “Come start your own family tradition; join us for the harvest.”
For more information on events and scheduling visit www.halifaxcelticfest.ca.