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Grants and Scholarships

The Edward J. Ward Irish Music Scholarship

The Edward J. Ward Irish Music Scholarship was established in 1989 by resolution of the Board of Directors of Irish Festivals, Inc. to honor Edward J. Ward, founder of the Milwaukee Irish Fest and promoter of Irish activities in the Milwaukee area.

The $1,000 yearly scholarship for musicians or singers is to be used for their study of Irish instrumental music or song. Applicants may be of any age or ethnic background and need not be residents of the Milwaukee area. The scholarship is given to individuals only, not to groups or organizations. Winners will be given $500 in August of the award year. The remaining $500 will be awarded only upon the committee’s receipt of the grantee’s report, including evidence (such as receipts and registration forms) that the project was completed.

Examples of past scholarships:

  • Instrumental music lessons
  • Sean Nos lessons
  • Study & Compilation of Session Tunes

Application Deadline is June 30, 2019

To Apply: Download application form

It was announced during the 2018 festival that this year's winner of the Edward J. Ward music scholarship award is Maya Tschudin. Maya resides in British Columbia, Canada and plans to use the funds to increase her weekly Irish flute lessons with the result of joining the British Columbia Fiddle Orchestra as the only Irish flute.

She was captivated after hearing Irish music just a few years ago and has since purchased her own Irish flute and started taking lessons from Amy O'Neil via Facetime. She plays fiddle as well as concert flute.

In the future she hopes to attend a music school in Ireland concentrating on flute, fiddle and any other instruments she happens to pick up along the way.

Foundation Grant Guidelines

View the guidelines for applying for a grant from the Irish Fest Foundation here.

CelticMKE Volunteer Scholarship

CelticMKE has established scholarships for its volunteers, beginning in 2002. Up to four $2,000 scholarships will be awarded each year to deserving volunteers who meet the criteria outlined below. The scholarships were established as both a reward and incentive for individuals who give significant time and effort as volunteers for the organization or festival. They also are intended to assist in developing the potential of future leaders of CelticMKE.

Click here to read through the Eligibility Requirements and Terms.

To Apply: Download Application Form

Deadline for the $2000 scholarship is July 22, 2019.

Please send application/letters of recommendation to:

Irish Cultural Grant

The Irish Cultural Grant was established in 1998 by resolution of the Board of Directors of Irish Festivals, Inc. A yearly total of $2,000 is available and can be dispersed in smaller grant amounts to one or more individuals. Half will be awarded on acceptance with the remaining funds dispersed on submission of status report, or completion of the project. Applications will be reviewed once a year in November. 

Its purpose is to fund an individual’s project that is related to the study of any aspect of Irish or Irish-American culture. Applicant must be an individual, may be of any age or ethnic background and need not be a resident of the Milwaukee area. Cultural grants are given to individuals only, not to groups or organizations. The Scholarship Committee anticipates announcing grant recipients in November. Further information and applications can be obtained by writing to the Scholarship Committee at CelticMKE, 1532 Wauwatosa Ave., Milwaukee, WI, 53213, by emailing us at or by calling CelticMKE at (414) 476-3378 during regular business hours.

Examples of past grants:

  • Currach research and competitions
  • Theatrical production development
  • Irish language study
  • Irish music session research for book publication

Application deadline is October 31, 2019.

To Apply: Download application Here.


Contact us at or at 414-476-3378.

CelticMKE | 1532 Wauwatosa Avenue | Milwaukee, WI 53213-2623 | Phone: (414) 476-3378 | Email:

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