The 38th Annual Houston International Festival

Once you’ve been to a few St. Patrick’s Day celebrations, you may come to the conclusion that the Irish like to party (the green beer and those “Kiss Me, You’re Irish” shirts always help get things going). The green fun continues at this year’s 38th Annual Houston International Festival, which spotlights the people and culture of the Emerald Isle. There’ll be music, art, food and exhibits spread out over several city blocks during two weekends. Expect plenty of Irish action; along with lots of traditional music, there’s a living museum and a reproduction of the Blarney Stone. This year there’ll also be some homegrown Houston talent mixed in with the Irish artists. An all-star team of local Celtic dancers taken from Houston’s Cass, McTeggart and O’Maoileidigh troupes will perform throughout the festival.

Those with green fatigue can head over to one of the other cultural zones, which invite visitors to global destinations including Ethiopia and Jamaica, and, closer to home, Texas and Louisiana. There’s a gypsy market and a fine arts market, a beer garden, various entertainment stages and a nonstop concert schedule. (For information on the festival’s musical performances, visit Noon to 10 p.m. Saturdays, noon to 9 p.m. Sundays. Through April 26. Houston City Hall and surrounding streets, Walker at Bagby. For information, call 713-654-8808 or visit $10 to $15.
Sun., April 19, 2009

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Julia Ramey