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Gaelic Storm's Run for Irish Culture - Donate

Why Donate to CelticMKE  Why Donate to CelticMKE  Why Donate to CelticMKE

Gaelic Storm members Pete Purvis and Ryan Lacey are running in the Milwaukee Lakefront Marathon this October and are choosing CelticMKE as the organization to raise funds for! By giving to CelticMKE, your contributions will support our efforts in promoting Irish and Celtic culture through year-round programming, Irish music education and more, both in the Milwaukee area and around the globe.

Why Give to CelticMKE?

Hey guys, it’s Ryan Lacey and Pete Purvis of Gaelic Storm here.  We have once again decided to run a marathon to raise some money for a good cause.  This year we chose the Milwaukee Lakefront Marathon, and we are proud to announce we picked the Milwaukee Irish Fest organization CelticMKE as our charity.  What does CelticMKE do?  Well, they do all kinds of things to promote Irish music and culture throughout the world, but most importantly, and truly what was the deciding factor in us picking this charity is that THEY PUT INSTRUMENTS INTO KIDS HANDS THAT NORMALLY COULDN’T AFFORD THEM!

For Gaelic Storm and many other touring Celtic acts we know, Milwaukee Irish Fest holds a special place in our hearts. The festival has continued to be a launching pad for many an artist, including ourselves, so we are truly indebted to their organization. What better way to give back for all they’ve done for us than to run a marathon to raise money for their amazing organization. So please donate and help us raise some serious dough for a great cause!  Special thanks to Joe Martino from CIDERBOYS and the rest of the fine people who organize the marathon, we can’t wait to get this going!  

We're looking to raise $5,000 before the start of the marathon, which kicks off October 6, 2019.


At CelticMKE our mission is to not only promote and celebrate all aspects of the Irish and Celtic cultures, but to also instill an appreciation of the heritage and traditions to current and future generations of folks around the world. 

To do so, we want to accomplish our goal of becoming a leading resource for all things Irish and Celtic, both locally and globally. Your contributions to CelticMKE will enable us to: 

  • - Produce year-round programming at our Center in the village of Wauwatosa, such as Irish and Celtic concerts, music class workshops, historical and cultural lectures, family-friendly events and more 
  • - Create innovative ways to bring the Irish and Celtic histories, traditions and current customs to a younger generation
  • - Offer Celtic music education, cultural and art opportunities, plus more through the Milwaukee Irish Fest School of Music, Milwaukee Irish Fest Summer School and the Milwaukee Irish Fest Choir 
  • - Preserve the history and music through our Ward Irish Music Archives 
  • - Give back to the community through our Foundation, which supports Irish and Celtic related endeavors throughout Ireland, Northern Ireland, Canada and the United States 
  • - Continue to host our signature event, Milwaukee Irish Fest, and bring in emerging & contemporary artists from Celtic nations that are paving the way for the future of Celtic music

To keep the culture and traditions alive, we seek your support. Any donation helps. Please donate by clicking the button below. 


What does Celtic or Irish mean to you?

"I think the word Celtic brings a few thoughts to mind. Of course there is the Celtic history - the rich mythology, the Celtic symbolism and respect of our planet and nature. I have always been drawn to the beauty and intricacy of Celtic knot-work and love how the knots show the interconnections of all things. Celtic knot-work shows this so well with the beautiful designs. The word Celtic to me also suggests unity amongst the seven Celtic nations and represents the hope of seeing that which binds us together and not what divides us." - Kristina Paris, 2017 Volunteer of the Year

"Being Irish means being a part of a storied history of music, hospitality and hard work." Rob Berrones, Milwaukee Irish Fest Volunteer

"Being Irish to me means being a part of a larger community that has given me lifelong friendships with incredible people from all over the world!" - Elyse Transon, Founder of the Milwaukee Irish Dance Company

Why Donate to CelticMKE

Supporting and being a part of CelticMKE

"Being a part of CelticMKE builds on that sense of belonging and community, and in a sense, extends family through the bond of heritage and a love for Ireland and Irish culture. It is this celebration of our heritage that connects the community of CelticMKE and makes it such a warm and welcoming place." - Ciara Duffy, First Year CelticMKE Volunteer

"Being a part of the CelticMKE community has given me so many wonderful experiences. My first introduction to this incredible family was in 1988 when I took a couple classes at the Milwaukee Irish Fest Summer School. Learning Irish traditional music has been one of the most joyful and heartful expereinces in my life and continues to this day. It opened up doors to volunteering, learning, teaching, forming two bands, starting the Milwaukee Irish Fest School of Music, putting on concerts of world renown Irish musicians as fundraisers - and above all, making lifelong friends. When I play Irish music for dancers at a session, I feel a joy that elevates me beyond what can be described. I will forever be grateful to those who introduced me to these incredible experiences and such amazing people. While I am not of Irish descent, I know my heart is! I feel welcomed, appreciated and respected. I am so grateful to be a part of this CelticMKE family." - Kristina Paris

Why Donate to CelticMKE

Words from the Minister of State for the Diaspora & International Development, Ireland

"What you're doing here is giving them [kids & young adults] the chance to experience that [the culture], sewing the seed at a very young age, as to what's important about Irish culture - its dance, its music, and that seed will mature over the years and ultimately, allow them to have the chance to pass it on again to the next generation. So you're taking something that was brought over on the famine ships and you're giving it new life every year, over and over again and making it relevant to a whole new generation. That's incredibly important." - Ciaran Cannon

"I feel so heartened that Irish culture is so alive, and so vibrant and so strong across the U.S. And I feel humbled that so many people from Irish backgrounds and indeed, many more with little to no Irish backgrounds, walk together and continue to take our interests and enjoy our culture, for which we are very, very, proud." - Ciaran Cannon at the 2018 Association of Irish & Celtic Festivals Conference

Other Ways to Support CelticMKE

Amazon Smile 

Are you an avid Amazon shopper? Did you know that Amazon gives back to non-profits, through Amazon Smile? Make a difference while you shop. Use the specific link here to add CelticMKE (will appear as Irish Festivals, Inc. which is our legal name) as the organization to support. With every purchase you make, Amazon will donate 0.5% to our organization! So you shop - Amazon donates!

Attend One of our Year-Round Events

We host an array of events, from family-friendly Celtic themed get-togethers to Irish and Celtic concerts; click here to see a list of all our upcoming events!

Milwaukee Irish Fest Tickets Charitable Donation

When purchasing your tickets to Milwaukee Irish Fest through our online ticketing store, you can support our mission of promoting Celtic music and culture, through year-round programming & educational opportunities, by adding on a donation (such as $1, $5, etc.) to your tickets. By supporting our work, we can further our commitment of showcasing the best that the Irish and Celtic cultures have to offer.


More Quotes on what being Celtic or Irish means to you

"I’ll tell ya when I felt most proud to be Irish...might take a minute but this gave me goosebumps...Ireland was playing the European soccer championships...we were drawn in the ‘group of death’...Spain, Italy, ourselves and I think Croatia...realistically we weren’t going to win any match...but the fans travelled in their thousands...I remember watching the first game against Croatia...every time an Irish player got the ball it was just crazy applause...every time a Croatian player got the ball-silence...we lost 2-0 I think...the next game we played Spain...def no hope this time (they went on to win the comp)...but the same thing...they beat us 4-0 but the Irish were doing the same thing...I was on holidays in Malta for the last game...Italy...also no hope of winning...and even if we won a million to nill we couldn’t progress through the tournament...but I HAD to tune in...HAD to didn’t matter that we had lost I HAD to support...we lost that game too but I noticed it was ALL Irish in the crowd...and the same thing...I got goosebumps...even when we’re beaten you can’t beat us...we had 700 years of oppression and we responded by songs and poets and a sense of humour that developed from it...we can’t be beaten...even when we’re beaten...the Irish fans were praised by the polish president at the next euro championship...they sang babies to sleep on buses...cleaned up after themselves...everybody just over for the 1990 we got to the quarter finals of the World Cup...the county was at a standstill...for all the other countries you MUST WIN...for us they lost the quarter final and got a hero’s welcome...we turned our oppression into a sense of humour...

I’ve been to LOTS of places on my travels but the best thing about Ireland is the Irish...there’s an undercurrent of humour running parallel with daily life that we don’t even notice cos we take it for granted...everybody loves the Irish...not in a smug way; the French wouldn’t want to be anything but French...same for German, Italian and any number of countries...but we’re welcomed because we have an air of just being there for the fun of it...and I don’t mean that in a flippant way or that we don’t take competition seriously or we’re all just’s very very very hard to put your finger on...but that day I just felt proud of my countrymen and felt proud to be Irish...even when we’re beaten you can’t beat us...and we’ll fight to the bitter end; win lose or draw we’ll stand arm in arm with the opponents and have a drink...I LOVE being where I’m from!!" - Shane Hayes, from the Irish band, Socks in the Frying Pan

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