July 4 BBQ

Celebrate Independence Day at the GAC!

Enjoy the GAC BBQ (7/4) and Fireworks (7/6)
On July 4th The GAC will serve up a tasty
BBQ from 12-2 with music by Mostly Green from 12-3PM.
Continue the Celebration on Saturday!

The town of Fairfield fireworks are scheduled for July 6th
about 9:15 – So come to the club for an early dinner
then down to the beach for a fantastic firework
display. When that’s done, come on back and
enjoy the music of Camac!

The Thrill of the Grill

The Monday Night BBQ Crew is making an encore appearance this summer. They’ll be sparking up the grill on the first and third Tuesday of the month.
Just like the Monday Night football BBQ’s there will be a charge for the burgers, dogs and what ever else comes off the grill. Participants are encouraged to bring a side dish or dessert to share, it’s a great way to meet your fellow members!

Father’s Day Irish Festival at the GAC sponsored by Féile, Inc.

The Father's Day Irish Festival at the GAC sponsored by Féile, Inc.

Sunday June 16th from  12-7pm
As in the past, this Festival will feature the ‘Irish Experience’ with plenty of Irish Music, Dancers, Pipers, Games, Food, Cultural Exhibits & Vendors along with the Presentation of Scholarships & Raffle Drawing.

Volunteers Needed 

Volunteers needed for a couple of hours from 12-7 on Sunday June 16th at the Father's Day Irish Festival.   We are looking for help at the door, selling raffle tickets, set up, clean up, etc. More details and a schedule to follow soon!

Please email feileinc89@gmail.com

Raffle Information

Support Irish Culture in Greater Fairfield County Cash Prizes totaling $6050

1st - $3500 | 2nd - $1500 | 3rd - $350 | 4th - $350 | 5th - $350

Tickets are $5 each and can be purchased online using by calling 203-545-0126 or emailing feileinc89@gmail.com. Drawing is Sunday June 16 at 6pm at the GAC.


For 35 years FÉILE has fostered Irish culture by supporting and sponsoring various arts programs including traditional Irish music, language, dance workshops, video histories, theatrical productions, and workshops as well as history and genealogy lectures. In addition, FÉILE awards charitable donations and grants to support numerous charitable causes for Irish cultural endeavors and awards annual scholarships to deserving high school seniors.

Irish Famine Commemoration Day

Workhouses, Coffin Ships, and Mass Famine Graves:
Places Where People Disappeared

By Loretto Leary

For Irish Famine Commemoration Day, May 19, Ireland’s Great Hunger Museum of Fairfield reminds us that the past has relevant lessons for the present and the future. An Irish Famine Commemoration Slide Show Presentation will occur on Friday, May 17, in the Carolan Room at 7 pm. The Presentation is Free and Open to all. There will also be a Wreath Ceremony at the GAC on Sunday, May 19, at 12 noon in recognition of Irish Famine Commemoration Day. This year’s National Commemoration Day in Ireland will be held in Edgeworthstown, County Longford.

September 13, 1845: a watershed moment in Irish history. This was the day The Gardener’s Chronicle and Horticultural Gazette stopped the press with regret, announcing that the “potato murrain” had arrived in Ireland. “Where will the Irish be in the event of a potato blight?” the author of the article asked. Where indeed.

169 years later, with a diaspora of over 70 million around the globe, we now know where.

The Irish were the unwanted immigrants of the mid-1800s. After facing coerced starvation at home, our ancestors forged ahead on foreign soil, making new homes and better lives in America, Canada, Australia, and England. And here we are, 169 years later, struggling to talk about it and face the truth.

Photography was invented in 1839, but only the rich had access to it. Without photographic evidence to display the hardships experienced by Irish Famine victims, we must rely on newspaper accounts of 1845 – 1852 to tell us the cut-and-dried truth. Rich people leave photos and legacies, poor people leave memories, and some of these poor Irish Famine victims vanished. There are no traces of them left behind. The only visuals we have to remind us are workhouses, coffin ship replicas, or mass famine graves—places where people disappeared.

May 19th, 2024 is Irish Famine Commemoration Day. This year’s National Famine Commemoration will take place in Edgeworthstown, Co. Longford. It is not widely advertised, and few people are aware of their own local commemoration ceremonies. Wreaths are laid, and a minute of silence is observed. Silence is fine, but we need to talk more about the relevancy of what transpired politically, economically, and universally to the Irish between 1845 and the years that followed.

Ireland’s Great Hunger Museum of Fairfield, chosen by Quinnipiac University as the future custodian of the Great Hunger Collection, has over 170 pieces of art depicting the Irish Famine. Faces of starvation, coffin ships, and skeletal people tell their stories. Here, we find our ancestors staring back at us from a canvas, bronze, or bog oak.

This new museum in Fairfield will use innovative digital imagery to bring the story of the Irish Famine to their descendants and anyone who identifies with the relevancy of that turbulent time. There are lessons to be learned and stories to be heard.  Artists infuse paint, stone, and bronze with emotions. Their truth will not allow us to look away, and we should not.

Rowan Gillespie b. 1953 Statistic I and Statistic II 2010 Bronze 49 in (124.46 cm)

Famine Family, by Rowan Gillespie, treads a perpetual immigration path to the Jeanie Johnston on the Quays in Dublin. Gillespie uses bronze as his medium, creating a family without ethnicity or skin color. A universal memorial which has now been adopted by exiled Ukrainians in Ireland. It is here on Holodomor, November 23, that they leave flowers to commemorate those lost during the Ukrainian Famine, 1932-1933.

Gillespie’s memorials stand on the waterfront in Ireland Park, Toronto, Canada, Hobart, Australia and in Dublin. But for the millions who bypass the long wait lines to visit Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty, instead choosing to take the Staten Island ferry for a photo op with Lady Liberty, they remain unaware of the fact that thousands of Irish Famine immigrants are buried just a short walk away from the ferry terminal in Staten Island.

Gillespie’s Statistic 1 & 2, in the Ireland’s Great Hunger Museum of Fairfield collection, reminds us that they “died like flies” when they reached the Staten Island Marine Hospital and Quarantine Station during 1845-1852. The site was burned to the ground in 1858, but a hill in front of the St. George Courthouse has a small headstone to mark the spot where some of the Irish Famine immigrants are buried.

Kieran Tuohy’s Thank You to the Choctaw in bog oak, also part of the collection, stands as a reminder of the charitable giving from a people who had faced their own hardships. A shared history that the Choctaw Nation deemed important enough to donate money to during the Irish Famine.

A minute of silence on Sunday, May 19th, is appropriate for Irish Famine Commemoration Day. However, for the rest of the year, we need to talk more about the Irish Famine, referred to in the US as Ireland’s Great Hunger. Each painting and sculpture in the new Ireland’s Great Hunger Museum of Fairfield will give voice to the silent dead. It is time they had their say.

To donate to Ireland’s Great Hunger Museum of Fairfield, please visit our website donate | IGHMF. Please help us to reach our goal to open the doors to Irish Famine History in 2026.

About the Author:
Loretto Horrigan Leary, a native of Portumna, Co. Galway, Ireland, and now a resident of Norwalk, CT, is a published freelance feature writer. Her contributions to Irish Central, Yahoo News, The Irish Echo, and other prestigious publications have included stories of the Irish diaspora. Drawing from historical records, letters, and diaries, Loretto gives voice to those who endured The Great Hunger in Ireland and America. Loretto is a board member of Ireland’s Great Hunger Museum of Fairfield and a member of the Gaelic American Club.

Loretto is passionate about Irish History, especially the Great Hunger. Her vast research into historical records, letters, and diaries has given a voice to those who endured the Irish Famine. This passion has fueled a series of articles about the counties of Ireland and how they were affected by the Famine of 1845-1852 (Stories of the Famine). Loretto has also created a Famine Commemoration Day Slide Show Presentation (taking place at the GAC on May 17, @7pm) to honor the memory of the millions who suffered and acknowledge their descendants in America.

Irish Famine Commemoration Day Slide Show – May 17th @ 7pm

This slide show presentation tells the story of  thousands of Irish famine immigrants who died at Staten Island Marine Hospital and Quarantine Station after enduring long, hazardous sea voyages. Join author Loretto Leary to learn more about the historical significance of Staten Island to Irish Famine Immigrant history and International Irish Famine Commemoration Day, which is Sunday, May 19th.

“Marrying Mike”

Clan na Gael’s Spring Production

“Marrying Mike”
Written by James Keary
Directed by Erin Williams
Produced by Marie Stehle and Jillian Plomin

Performances are Thursday 04/25, Friday 04/26 & Saturday 04/27 at 8pm and
Sunday 04/28 Matinee at 2:30pm

Featuring: Byrne White, Eileen Fickes,
Eamon Speer, Jillian Plomin, Dan O’Callaghan,
Patrick Baldwin, Laura Haynes

Elderly bachelor farmer Mike Fogarty, who has land and money despite appearances to the contrary, suddenly announces that he is looking for a wife. Mike’s scheming friend Barney O’Toole decides that his sister Colette would be an ideal candidate. Both Barney and Colette are determined that it will be a very short marriage. Mike’s friend Kate O’Sullivan discovers the scheme and rushes to the rescue. But Mike is a hard man to save from himself!
Admission for Marrying Mike is $20

For reservations please email Nancy O’Neil at playresvcng@gmail.com or call 203-377-1070

The East Coasters (Madeline Dierauf, Richard Osban, Calum Bell)

Saturday,  May 18, 7:30 pm
Sponsored by the Shamrock Traditional Irish Music Society and Gaelic-American Club.

The East Coasters are a group of young Irish musicians from the east coast of the United States whose sound and arrangements are a rich blend of the music in their local communities. Their innovative approach to the music combines syncopation and creative harmonies with a deep respect for the tradition.


Tuesday Nights in the Pub


Beginning Tuesday February 27th the Pub will be open from 5:30- 9pm

Tuesday will be an adult game night – We’ve started a dart league so anyone interested in joining meet in the Children’s Room at 7pm.  You can also bring your board games like scrabble, checkers, etc.

The Kitchen will be closed so you can bring your own food and /or we can do a potluck dinner.

Irish History | Stair Na Héireann


Our May 5, 2024 Irish History Lecture will be presented by  Nels Pearson, Ph.D., Professor and Chair of English at Fairfield University. (Carolan Room, 2-4 pm)

The topic of the talk will be the role of the sea in modern Irish literature, and it will be drawn from his book manuscript (in process): Dissolving Britain: Water, Coasts and Islands in the Modernist Literature of “the British Isles” .

Professor Brendan Kane will be our guest lecturer on February 4, 2024 at 2:00 p.m. in the Carolan Room. Dr. Kane is from Reading, Pennsylvania, received a B.A. in history from the University of Rochester, an M.Phil in Irish Studies from the National University of Ireland, Galway, and a PhD from Princeton. Prior to coming to UCONN in 2005, he spent a year as the NEH/Keough Fellow at the University of Notre Dame’s Keough Institute of Irish Studies. He serves as Vice-President/President-elect of the Celtic Studies Association of North America, elected Council Member of the North American Conference on British Studies, and co-director of the digital humanities project Léamh.org.

He will lecture on Irish Bardic Poets and the Wider World, c. 1500-1650 considering the place of the Irish bardic poet in European context during the age of the Renaissance and Reformation. His talk will address some of the latest research on the Irish bardic poet in Continental context and will draw upon both Irish-language poetry and prose. It will aim to suggest some ways in which early modern Ireland might look a bit more European than expected and, conversely, how Europe might look a bit more Irish!

Tickets $5.00 (Students with ID $2.00) No scrip or credit cards
Register online: gaclectures@gmail.com.
Subject: Irish History. Please provide name, address, phone



The Fréamh Éireann Genealogy Group would like to thank Féile and the Irish Language Group for their continued sponsorship of our Irish History Lectures. In May, we will be presenting our 33rd Lecture! Our February lecture, presented by Brendan Kane, Ph.D, was on Irish Bardic Poets.

First Friday Trad Musican

Joe Gerhard playing in the Pub Friday June 7th from 6-8pm.

Joe learned to play traditional music on the fiddle in the early 70s, sitting on the edge of the Irish sessions in Boston, quietly watching and listening. Fiddlers Larry Reynolds, Paddy Cronin, and Roger Burridge were especially welcoming and helpful.

Frequent trips to Ireland led to lifelong friendships with many wonderful musicians, in particular his wife’s uncle Maurice O’Keeffe, a fiddler from Kiskeam, Co. Cork, who really opened his eyes to the profound emotional and spiritual effects of the music and cemented a love for the music and people of the southwest of Ireland.

In New Haven, he led the well-regarded sessions at Anna Liffey’s for 17 years until 2014. Afterwards, he stopped playing the fiddle for nearly five years but was drawn back into the fold by the gentle and persistent encouragement of good friend and fiddler Katie Murray.

These days, Joe plays fiddle, banjo, and bouzouki with musical partners Damien Connolly and Jon Warner at sessions and occasional gigs around the Northeast.


St. Patrick’s Gaelic Football & Hurling Club

Registration is open for Spring Season U7 – U17
Season runs from April – June with weekly games and/or practice. All
players must be registered to play in any games and/or tournaments.

Gaelic Sports Summer Camp -Cul Camp
June 26 – June 30th from 9am-3pm at Notre Dame High School $300

For more information contact training@stpatricksgaa.us or visit the
club’s website stpatricksgfc.org

Trivia Night

Join us on 06.07.2024 for another fun filled night of trivia. Oh and don’t forget to wear  TIE DYE.

Trivia Night takes place on the first Friday of the month – and hands down one of the highlights of the GAC’s monthly activities so don’t miss out – you could win some cool stuff!