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January – February 2015 ~ Arizona’s Original Irish Newspaper ~ Vol. 25, 26, No. No. 71


Publisher’s Note Ann Niemann

And November-December 2014 stories continue... ...Celtic Artisan columnist, Lynn Herdman Mascarelli was honored at a “First Friday” soiree at the Irish Cultural Center. She was the featured artist in the Great Hall exhibit but also celebrating the launch of her mystery thriller novel, The Moondead under the pseudonym L.A. Mascone. The very first sale was to Mary Hannon, Secretary of Irish Network Phoenix. A.J. Voita, Cordon Bleu Chef from Vincent’s on Camelback is a former student of Lynn’s and volunteered to cater the event. A Photo by A. J. Voita fellow member of Lynn’s Air Force service found her via Facebook just three weeks before and came with his wife to the book signing, making a very special reunion. ...Keep the National Human Trafficking Resource Center’s hotline in your phone and stay vigilant to protect young women who may be trafficked during the Super Bowl’s surge of visitors to Arizona: 888-3737-888.


Serving the Celtic Community 2320 E. Baseline Rd., #148-623 Phoenix, AZ 85042 • (602) 568-3455 Visit • E-mail: Owner & Editor in Chief • Ann Niemann Publisher • Niemann Publishing, Inc. Art Direction • Misty Voitovski Design & Layout • Gena Corcoran Masthead Design • Elaine’s Design Emporium Contributing Columnists Brian Hanrahan • Carmelita Lee • Dan Magee Ellen Harrington • Gary Woodside • J Carro Janice Bryson • Kathleen Walters • Katie Caufield Ginder Liz Warren • Lynn Herdman Mascarelli • Maureen & Jack Sullivan Publisher – Julie O’Mahar (2003 - 2013) Editor - Kathleen Wood (2003 - 2008) Publisher - Maureen O’Mahar (1996 - 2002) Founding Publisher - Robert E. Graham (1987 - 1996)

See full story in the Nov-Dec 2014 edition.

Subscriptions are available at $18 per year, prepaid. Please mail your subscription request to the address above. Copyright©2015 - Niemann Publishing, Inc. All rights reserved. The opinions expressed herein are the opinions of the writers, and not necessarily those of ‘The Desert Shamrock,’ the publisher or the editorial staff. Reproduction in whole or in part is prohibited without written permission from the publisher. Publication of advertising herein does not necessarily constitute endorsement of a product or service. Unsolicited materials become the property of Niemann Publishing, Inc. All unsolicited materials are greatly appreciated and carefully evaluated although publication is not guaranteed.

2015 is starting off chock full! ...The Count to include the one million of Celtic ancestry in Arizona continues! We’re at 2,625. Go to our Home Page and click the link to be in the Count! Watch for I’m 1 in a Million! upcoming events such as the Writer’s Workshop with author, Jan Whalen, on January 24 (see Calendar)! ...As a member of Irish Network Phoenix, I’m pleased to share that the group is hosting a great get-together. Everyone welcome! “The Irish Pub” Film Screening Thursday, January 22 at 7:00pm to 9:30pm Tim Finnegan’s Irish Pub 9201 N. 29th Avenue, Phoenix 85051 (just north of Dunlap, west side of I-17) $10 includes one free pint or free soda “The Irish Pub, a lovingly laid-back documentary about the charms, liquid and otherwise, of the traditional Irish watering hole.” - The Washington Post



Celebrate with the Celtic Community All Year. Subscribe Today! NEW Subscription RENEWAL Gift Subscription From

The tradition of the Irish pub - Speaking to pub owners all over Ireland, Alex Fegan gets into the heart of what makes “the Irish pub” the institution that it is.

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win a pair of tickets to the Arizona Renaissance Festival!

It opens February 7 and runs through March! See ad on back page.


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2320 E. Baseline Rd., #148-623 Phoenix, AZ 85042


January – February 2015

Jan – Feb 2015 ~ Arizona’s Original Irish Newspaper


6 Celtic Artisan: Kristina “Krissy” Hines 7 Book Review: Talking Memories/ Life in a Small Village 12 Music Review: The Alt 20 Allene Dugan, Musician 25 McClelland Library: Passing the Celtic Torch



Travis Mills


11 Left Lane Maureen, Part 6, Family Vacations 25 Friends’ Young Ambassador Application


30 Bod yn Gymry...being Welsh: Children in Early Wales


Filmmaker, Writer, Producer

10 Keltic Kitchen: Apple Cider Pork Chops 17 Humor: Winter in Ireland (a poem) 21 Libby Decker, Champion Irish Dancer 23 Faces of Celtic Youth







8 Arizona: Did you know? 9 Irish Tales from Arizona Territory – O’Neil Family


Sarah Hines 2014 Arizona Colleen and Rose


4 Smart Wall Paint from Dublin


29 Robert Burns Supper – Get Your Tickets

next issue sneak peek Arizona Support for the Glasgow Celtics




12 Phoenix/Ennis Youth Sports Exchange



Passing of an Era: Tribute to Msgr. John McMahon

8 Beyond Tourism: Study Abroad in Ireland for a Month 15 Michael Tapia, Archeology Dig

Seamus McCaffrey

The Desert Shamrock

January – February 2015





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The Desert Shamrock

January – February 2015


Young Celtic Artisan:

Kristina “Krissy” Hines By Lynn Herdman Mascarelli


ach of our lives is a journey from somewhere through those who came before us. Krissy Hines’ Irish roots reach back to County Tyrone before the Famine and her great, great, greatgrandmother, Rose McNulty. She and Patrick Quinn arrived separately to America but later, happily married in Lowell, Massachusetts. Her great-great grandmother was Sarah Jane and there was a wonderful great grandmother, Florence, and a grandmother, named Sara without the ‘h’. She and her husband were military and Ann, their daughter, was born on an Army base in Alabama. And this dear woman, Ann Hines, is Krissy’s mother who homeschooled her, providing an environment in which her creativity soared. Her first art endeavors were creating paper dolls and their clothing, then progressed to cutting up and refashioning the humble T-shirt into something “styling” with friends. In the midst of a devoted family, Krissy grew up a child and teen in CROFT, a dedicated, well-organized group mostly of Scots, Irish or Welsh ancestry with a passion for researching the lifestyles and trades of Celts, circa 400 BC-1742 AD. Regardless of ethnicity however, membership is open to all interested in period crafting and bringing such history alive. Perhaps what fascinated Krissy the most was being part of a real village lifestyle lived each day in her home. CROFT promotes such a family/kid friendly milieu. With a lovely enthusiasm, she explained how her involvement in CROFT spoke to her love of fashion; her special passion, researching costuming of old and

remaking period dress with authentic fabrics. Older now, Krissy has taken her love of personal beauty to a whole other level with her present studies in cosmetology and hair design, applying and reworking all she learns to the Celtic traditions her family has observed since her youngest years. At ten, one of her fondest memories was an historical ball in period dress she attended. But she smiled with her recollections of another reenactment group called Powderclan. Krissy described them as long gun hunters and mountain men re-enactors with their families living the lifestyle, a “sweet, welcoming people.” She remembers large, wonderful gatherings in the northern Arizona pines with their children and sharing the old ways. It was clear that Krissy from a very young age had been the recipient of a unique cultural upbringing with other children around her and loving, closelyknit elders who believed it was their responsibility to pass the old crafts onto the young, whether it be spinning, weaving and lacemaking or blacksmithing and woodworking and so many other handcrafts. She feels now it is her calling as well to “pass on the baton” as her mother and father

did and spoke highly of other adults who touched her life, especially the talented and giving artisan, Nancy Feuquey, who taught her the inkle loom. Imagine this young woman’s joy each year immersed in a Celtic lifestyle and CROFT village simulation at the Arizona Renaissance Festival on weekends for the months of February-March. Its website describes it as bringing to life “the language, science, arts, engineering, and overall ambiance of the 16th Century village marketplace... with over 200 elaborately adorned shops offering an array of goods.” CROFT too brings its merchant class Celtic village as well to this event. Krissy’s earliest experience was at the bottom of the ladder, so to speak, working as a scullery maid and then on to helper, preparing Photo by SeleneLily Galicia period foods in a cast iron Dutch oven with open hearth inside an authentic cottage. How wonderful the dense, flat Welsh cakes filled with one’s choice of sausage, cheeses and raisins and there is bread pudding, too. Have you ever heard of macroons, generous portions of America’s favorite comfort food, macaroni and cheese, prepared Old World-style? I’m in love...and there are breads and cheeses for snacking. This is a family affair at Ren Fest with young participants as well plying their trades in woodworking, tooling and leatherwork. Of special interest is her brother Daniel’s participation working his skills as a blacksmith and producing his specialty, handcrafted knives. Among her companions at the Faire every year is esteemed ICC Celtic Crafter and member of CROFT, Carol Kuna, whom Krissy calls a master continued on page 14

Hand Crafts


The Desert Shamrock

January – February 2015

Talking Memories

Talking Memories is not for everyone. Author Thomas O’Reilly interviewed some twenty-five residents whose first-person Compiled by Thomas O’Reilly, 2013 stories begin in the early 1900s and extend to the first decade of Review by Brian Hanrahan the 21st century. Think of your parents or grandparents in the rish Americans whose forbears Midwest or East Coast in the departed the Emerald Isle in forties and fifties and of the yarns the dead of night with only that they spun. the clothes on their backs often Talking Memories offers a passed down little genealogical respectably entertaining image of information to descendants. That what life in Clonaslee might’ve so many of them were illiterate been like. In spots the tales ocdoomed first and subsequent casionally descend to humdrum, generations to learn Irish famyet there are recollections of ily history and about life during extraordinary pluck and grit told the Great Hunger while seated in the voice of nonchalance that around dinner tables in tenements the stout of heart often bear. dotting the East Coast of the Requisite text is also dedicated U.S. and Canada. to pursuit of sport in ClonaOthers are fortunate enough to slee, which means hurling and have their Irish genealogical tree Gaelic football. “Hurlexquisitely researched and detailed into impressive ing combines the skills tomes by distant relatives who evidently had nothof baseball, hockey, and ing better to do than to travel to Ireland and prowl lacrosse in one high speed, through ancient graveyards and churches to gather high scoring sport,” boasts names, birth and Baptism records. one plug. A quick search Talking Memories melds Irish family legitimizes the claim that histories passed from generation to generation hurling has a toehold with genealogical research to exquisitely detail life in North America, with in Clonaslee, a tiny village off the beaten tourist collegiate teams formed path in County Laois. at such schools as Boston Clonaslee, (Cluain na Slí), population 800 College. No surprise there. give or take, lies situated in verdant foothills some Prefaced by a snap127 kilometers west of Dublin. The name means shot of each person and “way of the meadow.” On an island that witnessed chaptered by them telling prehistoric settlements as early as 8,000 B.C., Clo“their story,” Talking naslee began as an Anglo-Norman town in the late Memories speaks of an Ire12th century, which some scholars call “the greatest land now largely vanished. century,” if you’re keeping track.

Life in a Small Village


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For geographic reference, those familiar with Tullamore D.E.W.—meaning the whiskey not the song by Dan Fogleberg—nearby Tullamore, Chandler, Arizona’s sister city in County Offaly, was once home to the Tullamore distillery and a must-stop where tourist buses still disembark passengers for a taste of the pricey dew. So, if you’re in the neighborhood… Frankly, I like the book’s folksy cadence and the simple stories told within. At least one copy of Talking Memories should be frequently available at the McClelland Irish Library at the Irish Cultural Center in Phoenix, Arizona.


Book Review:

Brian’s great great grandfather arrived in Canada on a coffin ship out of Limerick in 1852. After a year or two in frigid Montreal, he migrated to balmy Wisconsin where he joined dozens of other Irish immigrants to farm in Erin Township, which even today remains replete with Irish surnames.

January – February 2015


Study Abroad 8

Beyond Tourism: Study Abroad in Ireland for a Month By Liz Warren


tudying abroad in Ireland has been an experience that has changed my life forever. I didn’t know it was possible to fall so in love with a country in such a short period of time.” [Ernestina

Montoya, 2013 participant]

Have you dreamed of visiting Ireland? Go beyond tourism by enrolling in Mesa Community College’s month-long Study Abroad Ireland Program. You do not have to be a student at MCC to participate and it’s open to all ages. Now in its eleventh year, Study Abroad Ireland has proven to be more cost effective than other study abroad programs. And tourists can typically spend as much in two weeks as our participants spend for a month. Participants enroll in classes like Religion in Ireland: Neolithic to Early Medieval, The Irish Storytelling Tradition, and Introduction to Digital Photography. They make field trips to locations such as the Cliffs of Moher, Dunamase and Emo Court, the megalithic monuments at Loughcrew and Trim Castle, spend several days in Ireland’s

2007 students enjoying Loughcrew

“Playing Irish trad (traditional Irish music) in a real pub in Ireland was a dream come true!” [Stacy Brown, 2007]

“It is a fun experience that can help spice up your resume. The SAI program has stayed on my resume to this day, because every person who has ever interviewed me has asked about that experience.” [Jeff Aspland, 2007] “Being able to take classes about the Irish Storytelling Tradition, and the History of Religion in Ireland opened my heart and mind to a new appreciation for this beautiful land of Eire. The country and the culture are truly beautiful inside and out. The people are warm and loving although shy at first, once you get them talking they don’t stop. They make you feel so welcomed that you sometimes forget you’re not a local. Ireland will always have a place in my heart. Since studying abroad in the summer of 2013 I found myself Laura Rutherford telling stories to Irish school children, 2011 back in Ireland two more times, Cultural Heart, Galway, and take a boat to Cloneven while I was studying abroad in another macnoise. Most importantly, they are immersed in country. I hope one day very soon I will be able Irish culture and heritage, while living for a month to call the magical land of the Emerald Isle my in the picturesque town of Athlone, right in the home!” [Ernestina Montoya, 2013] center of Ireland on the beautiful Shannon River. To learn more about Study Abroad Ireland, Here’s what some of our former students have visit This year’s dates are to say about their experiences: May 29–June 29, 2015. “In all honesty, my first trip to Ireland would not have been as magical if I hadn’t been on the Liz Warren is the faculty director SAI study abroad program. Having courses in Irish of the Storytelling Institute at storytelling, history, religion, and so on--while South Mountain Community simultaneously visiting the historical and cultural College. She teaches the Irish sites we’re studying--really made the place come Storytelling Tradition every alive for us.” [Diana Lucente, 2013] summer as part of Mesa “Walking the land and breathing the air in Community College’s Study Ireland gave my storytelling more depth and Abroad Ireland Program. character.” [Laura Rutherford, 2011]

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2014 students with noted Irish Storyteller Liz Weir


Did you know?

7. Has 26 peaks that are more than 10,000 feet in elevation.

8. Has the largest contiguous stand of ponderosa pines in the world stretching from near Flagstaff along the Mogollon Rim to the White Mountains region. 9. Yuma, Arizona is the country’s highest producer of winter vegetables, especially lettuce. 10. Arizona is the 6th largest state in the nation, covering 113,909 square miles. Photo by Gary M. Johnson

Read more fun and fascinating facts about Arizona NEXT edition.

Arizona’s Official State Historian, Marshall Trimble has been called the “Will Rogers of Arizona.” He’s a “cowboy philosopher,” educator, lecturer, author, folk singer and stage performer, and appears frequently on radio and television. He created and taught Arizona history at Scottsdale Community College for forty years where he was also Director of Southwest Studies.

January – February 2015

from Arizona Territory / O’Neil Family

By Janice Ryan Bryson

and helped establish councils in Prescott, Globe, Tucson and Flagstaff. he prestigious Irish family of O’Neil Ruth’s grandfather, James McHugh, was born claims descent from Niall Glundubh in Ireland and arrived in Tombstone with his (Black Knee), King of Ireland, who was family in 1883. He was a guard at copper mines slain by the Norsemen circa A.D. 919. The legin the area, always carried a six-shooter, and was endary Niall of the Nine Hostages (4th Century at the OK Corral during the famous shoot-out. King of Ireland), was also a remote ancestor. The James O’Neil had an adventurous life – he given name Niall comes from the Gaelic “niwas a cowboy, road builder and merchandiser. adh”, champion, and O’Neil has the distinction He loved the outdoors and had enjoyed his of being one of the first hereditary surnames ever cowboy days at the ranch of H.B. Hughes near adopted in Ireland. The O’Neils were the chief Sunflower. He spent many summer vacations on family of the Cinel Eoghan, their territory being the ranch and was an excellent horseman. DurFrom Collection of Jane O’Neil the Tir Eoghan (modern County Tyrone), and ing World War II he was obliged to “sit out” the David and Adeline Daly O’Neil, 1890s their race formed two main branches: the northwar as he was denied a commission due to the ern Ui Neill of Ulster and the southern Ui Neill importance of his position as security officer at worked for the Southern Pacific Railroad. He came of Thomond. The former clan held the title “Earls AiResearch Corporation. to Arizona in 1906 to work on small mining claims of Tyrone” and the red hand of Ulster is taken from While serving as President of the Home Supply in Santa Cruz and Yavapai Counties and managed their Coat of Arms. Company which he founded, a group from the hotels in Benson and Douglas. David represented The colors of the Coat of Arms for the O’Neil Better Government Association approached James Cochise County in the legislature and he and Adefamily are silver or white standing for sincerity and in 1952 to run for the Maricopa County Board of line later moved to Phoenix where David served as peace, red for warrior and military strength, blue for an Arizona State Tax Commissioner. Supervisors. After his election, he disposed of his strength and loyalty, and green for hope and loyalty holding in the Home Supply Company to devote James was raised in Douglas and attended the in love. The beasts on the Coat of Arms includes University of Arizona where he majored in econom- himself full time to his County office. James was a lion representing courage and a fish. The fish is serving as chairman of the Board of Supervisors ics. He quit school and gained employment in the associated with the legend of Fionn who became when he passed away in 1959. His wife Ruth engineering division of the state highway departthe first to taste the “Salmon of Knowledge.” The ment. As an engineering aide, James helped build a Coles O’Neil then ran for the vacant office and was Celtic “other world” is often a place of water where elected to three terms, serving as Chairman of the number of highways in Maricopa County. An outgods are represented by fish. standing baseball player, he played semi-professional Board until 1964. At that time Ruth moved to My Arizona O’Neil story Washington, D.C. to work for the Department of baseball in his youth for several begins with Dr. Thomas Patrick the Interior. Arizona mining communities. Daly who was born in 1871 in James and Ruth became parents of seven James married Ruth Coles Iowa, the son of a Galway nachildren including two sets of twins – David and from Bisbee. Her parents, Frank tive. A graduate of Northwestern Carolyn, Jim, Jane, Tommy and Ruth, and Mary. and Jane McHugh Coles, were University Medical School, he Congratulations to Jim O’Neil, wife Mary Ann pioneers in Arizona Territory. came to the Southwest for his and children Bridget, Tim and Jason for having Frank was Assistant Manager of health which he regained after been selected as the Irish Persons of the Year for the Phelps Dodge Mercantile a short rest. Thomas practiced Company Store in Bisbee. During 2015 by the Phoenix St. Patrick’s Day Parade and medicine in Congress, Arizona Faire Board. Kathleen Sweeney will be writing World War I, Frank had a short and was prison physician for the stint as Sheriff of Cochise County. about the many contributions the Jim O’Neil’s have state penitentiary. One son, James made to the Irish community. He was indicted twice by the Thomas, was born of his marriage Grand Jury for events surroundto Adeline Kelly of Chicago. Daly ing the Bisbee Deportation. The Janice Ryan Bryson descended passed away soon after the birth of Coles family eventually settled in From Collection of Jane O’Neil from Irish pioneers who arrived his son. His widow Adeline marPhoenix and Frank become GenJames Thomas and in the Arizona Territory in the ried David Charles O’Neil who eral Manager of the Doris Hyman Ruth Coles O’Neil, 1950s 1880’s, she is co-founder of was manager of the Gadsden HoFurniture Company which he the Irish Arizona Project and tel and a Packard auto dealer in Douglas, Arizona. purchased. The store was later renamed Cole’s Home co-author of the book Irish After their marriage, James Thomas’ last name was Furnishings. Frank served as Director and Emeritus Arizona. Janice is a member changed from Daly to O’Neil. Director of Valley National Bank for nearly fifty of The First Families of Arizona, Daughters of the American Revolution and several women’s agriculture David was born in Illinois in 1881 and settled years. He had been appointed Territorial Deputy organizations, and serves on several Boards. in Cananea, Mexico where he ran a restaurant and of Arizona by the Knights of Columbus in 1904


The Desert Shamrock

January – February 2015


Irish Tales



Keltic Kitchen

Apple Cider Pork Chops By Katie Caufield Ginder


ia daoibh a chaired! (Hello friends!) Growing up, I remember my mom frequently making pork chops. I never really enjoyed them until she prepared the recipe below during a recent visit. The recipe includes my favorite drink, hard apple cider, along with fresh apples and sage. The recipe is fairly fool proof. Just be sure not to overcook the pork and save yourself a can of cold cider to enjoy with your meal.

Apple Cider Pork Chops Yield 4 Servings

Ingredients: • 4 bone-in pork chops • Salt and pepper • 6 apples (3 apples chopped into large chunks; 3 whole apples) • 1 large onion, chopped • 6 fresh sage leaves or 1 tablespoon dried sage • 1 can hard apple cider


Photo by Katie Caufield Ginder

• Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. • Salt and pepper both sides of pork chops. Set aside. • Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add pork chops and brown each side; about a minute per side. Remove pork chops from pan and place in 9 x 13 casserole dish. • Add chopped onions to skillet and sauté until almost golden. Add chopped apples and sage and cook for an additional minute. • Remove onion and apple mixture and pour over the pork chops. Place the three whole apples among the pork chops. Pour apple cider over pork chops and apples and then place in the oven. • Cook for about 30-40 minutes or until pork is done. Pork is considered done at 145 degrees F. Remove from oven and enjoy! Katie Caufield Ginder lives in Gilbert with her husband and son. Her background is in higher education program management, instruction and faculty recruitment. She enjoys spending time with her family, traveling, cooking, yoga, volunteering with Big Brothers Big Sisters and learning about her Irish heritage. Katie’s great, great paternal grandfather was from Galway and immigrated to Pennsylvania in the 1860s.

Desert Fare Cookbook

Andrew Mirtich, publican, is son to Annie Mulally, whose family originally hails from County Galway

On sale for $10 Pre-pay on our website at and cookbook will be mailed.

705 N. 1st Street Downtown Phoenix 10

The Desert Shamrock

January – February 2015

Part 6

from Left Lane Maureen Family Vacations

By Maureen Sullivan CTC County Cork, Ireland


ay the road rise to greet you, as you journey around Ireland with your family! Ireland has a current population of 4.6 million people with 33% of the population under 25. Young families with small children are still common. With this edition’s “Faces of Celtic Youth,” it’s significant to realize how accommodating Ireland is for families young and old. Intergenerational family groups love Ireland as a destination! In this article we are going to introduce you to some of the interesting, fun places you might take your family on an Irish journey. Fota Wildlife Park in County Cork is an amazing experience! Fota opened in 1983 and wherever possible they have chosen animals that thrive in a free range environment. An opportunity to see a kangaroo in front of you or get close to a ring-tailed lemur might just pop up!! Our grandchildren loved this place and visited numerous times. For mom’s enjoyment, there is the lovely Fota Gardens and Arboretum nearby. Fota is located about 20 minutes from Cork city, and is open 7 days a week. A typical family with two adults and two children would currently pay 44 Euro (about $54 USD) for a visit. Birr, County Offaly, in the center of Ireland, has an amazing telescope built in 1845! Lord Rosse built the telescope on his family property at Birr Castle. For children and young adults interested in science and space, this is a find! This reflecting

telescope remained the largest in the world for over 70 years and is arguably the largest historic scientific instrument still working today! The Castle has lovely gardens and shops that will appeal to moms and grandmas on the trip. It is open year round, but the café is open April through October. If one wants want a family castle stay, nearby is Kinnitty Castle, which has been very welcoming for our family visitors. Young children love the two knights in armor that greet one at the front entrance!! Also nearby is Clonmacnois, founded by Saint Ciaran in 548 AD. It was home to Irish monks, religious scholars and students from 548 until 1552. The last high king of Ireland, Rory O’Connor, was buried here in 1198 AD. Clonmacnois has three high crosses, two round towers, and the largest selection of early Christian grave slabs in Europe. One of the most delightful stays for one of our client families was their adventure in County Clare!! Ballyportry Castle, a 15th century Gaelic Tower house, is located close to the Burren and the ocean in County Clare. The keep is 6 floors with 6 bedrooms and 2 baths. It is equipped with modern appliances in the castle kitchen and beautiful Tipperary linens. It is a self-catering venue that was modernized by an American architect and can be leased for 1 to 7 day stays. There are accommodations for 8 people. A one to three-night stay is currently 1,300 Euro, depending on the time of year. A warning: The round tower steps at Ballyportry are not advised for the elderly, handicapped, or very small children. It is well located for visiting the Burren, Bunratty Folk Park, the Cliffs of Moher, and summer cruises from Doolin to the Aran Islands.

Brendan Sullivan Family at Fota Wildlife Park, Co. Cork


Driving Tips

Two caves, the Ailwee and the Doolin, are an adventure for most families. Last, but not least is the adventure of Dublin City. The Dublinia Viking experience is educational and most entertaining! During this interactive history of Dublin’s start as a Viking city, one will experience history and have a fascinating exploration. Also enjoyable is the amphibious Viking Splash Tour, a good way to tour the streets and neighborhoods of Dublin City as well. Make sure to book in advance, as this is very popular! Children going to Ireland are in for a journey filled with memories and experiences which they will not soon forget.” [John Sullivan]

To be continued…

Maureen and John (“Jack”) are the owners of Sullivan’s Travels, Inc. Maureen has been a travel professional for 23 years, moving their business to Phoenix four years ago. Jack’s parents were born in County Cork, Ireland, settling in 1920’s Chicago.

Phone: 480-671-0207 • Cell: 847-481-9149 Fax: 480-617-5961 • Ballyportry Castle, Co. Clare

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Travel Europe, Mexico, Cruises & South Pacific

January – February 2015



Phoenix/Ennis Youth Sports Exchange


hat if your son or daughter had the opportunity to travel to Ireland and compete in their favorite sport with Irish youngsters while experiencing the culture and history of “The Emerald Isle”? Would that be of interest to you? Well that is precisely what our Phoenix/Ennis Sister Cities committees are planning for the future. Having traveled to Ireland several times and being interested in the activities of the Irish community here in Phoenix (programs at the ICC, Saint Patrick’s Day Parade and Faire, etc.), I became involved with our Phoenix/Ennis committee over the course of the last few years. Our chairperson, Mary Hill Connor, herself a native of Ennis, knowing I had a background in athletics, asked me to write a proposal for a youth sports exchange between our two cities. In a nutshell, the proposal is that our Sister Cities organize an exchange where we would send a youth group to Ireland for a week to ten days to visit while sharing some friendly competition in a particular sport. Ennis would then send their team/individuals to Phoenix and we would host them with activities and venues for competition throughout the same length of time. The guidelines would be similar to those of our current Youth Ambassador Exchange Program which has enjoyed great success over the last several years. The best example I could use and the sport we would most likely begin with would be

golf. We want to be sure the program has the best chance for success and therefore, hope to make it feasible by limiting the numbers, at least in the beginning. The fact that our climates are very different would be ideal, especially for outdoor sports. Phoenix would send L-R Susan Ward, Betty Sanford, Jim Sanford, TJ Waters, and Davnet Dwyer at a foursome of boys Old Ground Hotel, Ennis, 10/25/14 and a foursome of girls to Ireland, perhaps in June, when the weather and Susan Ward are three of the nicest, most friendly, there is ideal, and Ennis would send their two groups, and generous people you could ever hope to meet. possibly in December or January, when we have our That’s quite a statement about people who live in the best weather. For our kids to be able to play some “Friendliest Town in Ireland” (awarded that recogniof the best links courses in Ireland, like Lahinch and tion in 2013). They fully supported the proposal and Doonbeg, would be a great experience, as it would be I know will work hard from their end to bring this for the Irish kids to play some of our beautiful desert very worthy project to fruition. We will keep you courses around the Valley of the Sun. posted over the next several months. My wife Betty and I were visiting in Ireland this Be sure to let us know if you are interested in the past October and had the opportunity to meet in project and would like to sponsor, volunteer, provide Ennis with some of our counterparts who have also venues, housing, travel, etc. Contact: Jim Sanford, become good friends. TJ Waters, Davnet Dwyer,

Music Review:

bial Who’s Who in Celtic music, and possibly most commonly known in America for his work with the Irish-American band Solas. It only takes a few moments listening to tell that this is a wonderful collaboration and Nuala and Eamon are equally as talented and seasoned. This is one of those nearly perfect collections of tunes and is arranged in a flowing and pleasing manner. I find it easy to have this release on repeat and just letting it play in the background. From the harmony vocals that start “Lovely Nancy” to the a cappella performance of “The Letter Song” it is hard to find a single weak spot. Even though these songs are based on traditional songs, I was unfamiliar with all of these. Each one has been a nice surprise to say the least. The vocals and the musicianship are top notch and the arrangements are quite enjoyable. I often find traditional songs end up too short and leave me wanting more, but with all these clocking in at over 4 minutes, each feels comfortable without getting too long. A set of jigs at track 4 and a set of reels at track 9 break up this disc nicely and showcase their musical talents and add to the collection perfectly.

The Alt By Gary Woodside


ia daoibh mo chairde! Gary John (GJ) Woodside is ainm dom. I will be reviewing new musical releases from Irish/Celtic artists or that contain Celtic inspired themes. Being Scottish and Irish on my da’s side tracing back to Ayrshire, Scotland and Galway, Ireland, I thought it would be fun to make it like listening at the pub. Each will be rated by having one pint maybe just to get through it or having a few more up to five pints and truly enjoying the musical journey. Let’s get started, shall we? My review this time out is of the self-titled debut release of The Alt. It’s a new project which features John Doyle on guitar, bouzouki, and vocals; Nuala Kennedy on flutes, whistles, and vocals; and Eamon O’Leary also on guitar, bouzouki, and vocals to round out this very talented trio. Doyle, a much acclaimed guitarist, has played with a prover-


The Desert Shamrock

If I had to choose, I would say my two favorite tracks are the haunting rendition of “The Eighteenth of June” recounting the Battle of Waterloo and the Scottish Gaelic song “Cha Tig Mòr Mo Bhean Dhachaigh” that sings of a man who is missing his wife who has went away. “One Morning In May” and “Willie Angler” are also a nice showcasing of Nuala’s sweet voice. This is just a great release. The vocal performances shine as the male and female voices intertwine and harmonize seamlessly and beautifully throughout. This has been a welcome find in my endless search for things worthy of review. Go buy this from their website or bandcamp page! I give this one 5 smooth relaxing pints. Sláinte!! Any artist who would like to be featured or any suggestions for releases to review, please contact me at Slán go foill.

A musician/songwriter for 20+ years, Gary has a small recording studio and experience in recording, mixing, mastering, etc. With an extensive collection of recorded music, 10,600 of all styles and genres, he has a special fondness for Celtic music with his da’s ancestry from Ayrshire, Scotland and his mom’s from Moylough, County Galway, Ireland.

January – February 2015

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you put on your skin is absorbed, Celtic Complexion skin care products use only organic ingredients and are 100% synthetic chemical-free. Also gluten-free and cruelty-free.

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industry is water. Most beauty products on the market are water - up to 80%. As a result of this dilution, you can go through a cream in about 6 weeks. In addition, tap water contains multiple toxins including pathogens, ammonia, chlorine, fluoride, pesticides, and heavy metals including lead and mercury, which is absorbed through your pores.

Artisan skin care products. Our skin care products are hand-blended, made with care, purpose, and integrity. We are a small business, not a big corporation whose main motivation is shareholder profits. The quality of our artisan serums and creams is much superior to skin care products manufactured using machines. Purity. We keep our Celtic Complexion products pure. Every jar is made fresh-to-order, in small batches, using the purest ingredients we can buy.

Guarantee. If you are not 100% satisfied with any Celtic Complexion skin care product, just return the unused portion or even the empty bottle within 90 days for a full product refund. That way, you risk nothing. In good company. Celtic Complexion has been seen

in British Vogue magazine and Organic Spa magazine, Irish American News and is a sponsor of the Rose of Tralee Festival (American contestants) and is a supporter of the Celtic Radio Network.


...continued from page 6

CROFT at AZ Renaissance Festival with 2013 Irish titleholders

Sp on s ore d i n p ar t by


The Desert Shamrock

stick weaver and baker; a wonderful period crafter, she has contributed to Krissy’s development as an artist. She revealed how all this has morphed into one craft then another, her art making on the inkle loom and finger crocheting for bodices. Of particular importance for Krissy is her tutelage and apprenticeship under noted artisan, Susan Clark, an accomplished weaver and maker of cloth and unusual fabrics on the great loom. Now she is moving on as a member of the unusual street reenactment band, Clap Bang, which she described as “medieval stomp.” In closing, Krissy mentioned that, among other artistic and future business pursuits, it is her intent to be a photo shoot stylist and discussed furthering her studies at East Valley Institute of Technology and a two-year program in cosmetology and beauty. Using effectively her training, she creates hair arrangements in period “dos” for re-enactors. For her it is a tactile experience; she is thrilled at seeing what she does with her hands come to life. “I like to see everything come together...there’s a pattern.” Krissy Hines is not a self-absorbed twenty-yearold but a woman concerned with issues of social justice; her dream, a community-conscious salon of her own with a fair trade agenda for workers’ rights, but there is more. She is called to a special ministry for women who have found themselves victims of human trafficking or re-entering the world from a prison setting and in need of a “step up” with their personal appearance when applying for work or seeking an interview. Our young artisan explains this is an issue “weighing heavy on her heart” and envisions her salon a safe haven for others. She beautifully told me: “Every gift that God gave you, He gave it with someone in mind.” Young Celtic artisan, Krissy Hines, is an old soul gracing us with her presence.

January – February 2015


was given the opportunity to participate in an archeology dig in Ireland this past summer. As an archeology major at Palomar College in San Marco, CA, this was a very exciting time for me. One that I will always remember by learning a lot, and meeting lifelong friends who share the same interest in Irish archeology as I do. The dig I participated in was located in the townland of Caherconnell, Kilcorney Parish, Burren Barony, County Clare. The landscape in the area is “high burren” and is karst limestone. Currently, the land is used as pasture. The valley has several archeological monuments of various ages. Probable early medieval settlement enclosures (mainly cashels) are found in the valley, while prehistoric sites (mainly megalithic tombs) are found in the highest points of the area. One of the first discoveries made was a probable rectangular house with an internal stone-lined hearth. The house was from the Late Neolithic or Early Bronze Age. A few prehistoric artifacts found were: polished stones/ marbles, a sherd of Neolithic pottery, and a fragment from a possible saddle quern. There was also the discovery of human remains found within the partly silted up entrance of the structure. The remains were composed of at least 3 people. The bones were radiocarbon dated back to the 15th/16th century A.D. I could go on and on about the excavation and findings during this archeological dig. Every day brought new opportunities for learning and discovering the beautiful and rugged Irish landscape. My time spent with

Michael left side, 3rd from left

Caherconnell Archaeological Field School will be a lasting memory. Because of the learning experience and the friendliness of the Irish people I met, I am hoping to continue my studies in Archeology at the National University of Ireland, Galway in the fall of 2015. If you would like to learn more about the excavation findings, you can read more on their website at Michael was one of the nicest and most hardworking students that we have ever had at Caherconnell and it was a pleasure to have him here! We really do hope that he will make it back again one day. –Claire Collins, Caherconnell Archaeology Field School

Andrew Mirtich, publican, is son to Annie Mulally, whose family originally hails from County Galway

Study Abroad

Michael Tapia, Age 25

Michael 3rd from left

18 W. Monroe • Phoenix, AZ 85003 The Desert Shamrock

January – February 2015


Thomas P. Murphy, CPA 21639 N. 12th Avenue, Suite 203 • Phoenix, Arizona 85027 (623) 581-0375 • Fax (623) 581-9242 Grandfather Murphy born in County Westmeath and Grandmother in County Longford, Ireland

5628 E. Thomas Rd. Phoenix, AZ 85018 Bus.: (480) 990-1900 Fax: (480) 481-9551 E-Mail:


Dave Binsfeld, CIC, ARM

Vice President

The Desert Shamrock

January – February 2015

By Carmelita Lee

Winter in Ireland

My first. And me from California with a California coat, designed not for wet and cold, but for style, panache. You know the kind. Cotton blend, belted, a trench coat. Chosen to punctuate the colour of my hair and look good with colourful scarves. Pretty. Not warm. But that’s what you wear in LA, bundled againstwhat? Crystal blue skies and warmish sun? Santa himself is shameless in Bermuda shorts and hoping for the sea breeze to kick in. What one wears in LA is confidence, not layers of wool and fleece.

Winter in Ireland

My first. And me with the flu, the whole country flat on its back. So big an outbreak, and me missing home. I’m new here, despondent. You know the feeling Wrapped in my grandmother’s bright yellow quilt Chosen because I feel loved wrapped within it I hibernate, dreaming while encased in its shell. Warm. Not pretty. But that’s what you wear when you’re sick in Bray Town,

bundled against the chill. The sun is a cold yellow spot in the sky, casting long shadows, skipping low across rooftops and early gives way to the night. What one wears in Ireland is hardiness, topped off with a woollen cap.

Winter in Ireland.

My first. Then comes a knock at the door. “Postman,” he says through the sliver I open, clad in a bright yellow wedding ring quilt “We’re sick,” I tell him, “You can’t come in.” His smile is delightful. You know the one. “No worries, missus,” the postmaster said. “But I I just wanted to check ye’re awree inside.” Warm. And beautiful. “Ni,” he says, “don’t be trooblin’ yourself, “If ye need help, put dis in d’ winder, or call to dis number here.” Disbelief at this kindness is hard to contain. “Keep warm, missus” he says, “ye will be better soon.”

Winter in Ireland.

My first. Better, I throw on my only “coat” O’er layers of cotton and fleece heading down to the town below My first venture out. You know the way. An old-fashioned bell announces my presence as I push open the door Then, when goosedowned and booted, the bell says that I’m going away Beating the cold and the rain at their game Beautiful. And warm. “They liked my accent,” I tell my family. “You’re not in Kansas, Toto,” I tell the cat I unwind my new scarf away and shake off my cap, hang the new coat on the hook By the door. “I’m going to like this place.” I called out. “It’s not California,” I say.


Winter in Ireland, 1999

How does a gal named Carmelita claim to be Irish? Scottish, even? Granny Holland’s family hailed from Ennis, County Clare, and Grandpa Maxwell from the Borderlands, Scotland. Her husband’s mother was a Dowdall, and he had a Grandma O’Higgins… ye can’t be more Irish than that!

Matt’s grandparents, James Joseph Cunningham and Delia McNicholas, each emigrated from Co. Mayo, Ireland, met and married in Chicago

The Desert Shamrock

January – February 2015


By Ann Niemann

Travis Mills,



ravis Mills has barely turned 29 and already Joyce’s “Dubliners contains some of the best his credits include directing five feature films short stories ever written and they are still and over 80 short films, providing most relevant today,” he affirms. Travis’ The Dubof the writing as well. He has also produced music liners in Arizona comprises 15 of the 52-film videos, commercials, and documentaries. All this challenge. They coincided with his showing just since 2010 when he founded Running Wild six of these at the McClelland Irish Library’s Films with local playwright Gus Edwards, a former “Dubliners” 100-year celebration of the pubASU professor of his. “From the beginning, we set a lishing of Joyce’s groundbreaking work. standard of making movies at a fast pace with small In April 2014, he completed production budgets, while focusing on good storytelling.” on his fourth feature, a baseball drama titled Growing up abroad, Travis was born in Quito, Duel at the Mound. The film was shot in Ecuador, lived in France for one year, and then six nine days, featuring locations around the years in French-speaking Comoros Islands off East Phoenix metro area. One of the principals is Africa. He was obsessed with film for a very long Holly Nordquist, the 2013 Arizona Colleen time, starting with watching Mary Poppins “20 and Rose (Irish titleholder), with Michael times in a row” at age 2. Since his dad is an Arizona Hanelin playing her father. native, eventually the family returned to settle in Filming starts in March on Durant’s Mesa with Travis and two Never Closes about younger sisters. Phoenix icon, Jack Durant. In high school, he Adapted to the screen by became serious about Travis Mills, the film is based pursuing this career on the works of Mabel Leo direction. Travis graduand Terry Earp. He shares that ated from Arizona State Durant “was a restaurateur, University in Film and ladies’ man, and mysterious started his company a year gentleman who maintained later. It’s not a hobby and many connections to the to demonstrate that, he mafia. From the backwoods went full-time in 2011 of Tennessee to the world of and full throttle. Clearly, Vegas at the time of Bugsy and Travis is viewed as one of finally as the owner of his fathe most respected and mous steakhouse, Durant is a legend and dynamic character, established film producers Duel at the Mound at once charming, powerful, and directors in Arizona, and dangerous. This film tells his story during one committed to building a sustainable film industry day at his restaurant.” in the State. There is a very long list of press awards Durant is played by well-known actor, Tom on his website, plus more recently being included Sizemore, from Saving Private Ryan. The cast in the Phoenix New Times 2014 edition of “100 includes Pam Grier, Peter Creatives,” which spotlights 100 of the city’s creaBogdanovich, Joe Don tive forces. Baker, and Michael RichA daunting project, Travis is the creator of 52 ards (he played Kramer on films in 52 weeks featuring over 30 Arizona actors the hit show Seinfeld). A in various locales that debuted at a three-day film Kickstarter crowdfunding festival in early 2014. The films are contemporary campaign launches January adaptations of famous short stories by authors 1 to raise $100,000. Go to such as Edgar Allen Poe, Mark Twain, and Irish www.durantsnevercloses. writer James Joyce. Travis has been a devoted fan com for more information of Joyce’s books since his literature days in college. about ways to participate. His favorite genre? Westerns! “I love not See Fox10 News about only the look and feel of Durant’s Never Closes Westerns but the central question of justice in every true Western film.” Running


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Wild’s most ambitious project to date is 12 Western feature films in 12 months, to begin production in 2016. Travis highlights that they will be traditional, along with some variations with contemporary settings and one musical. Sitting opposite me having lunch at Durant’s, Travis grinned and remarked the red hair and beard had to come from somewhere. He has Scotch-Irish from both sides. His dad is the family genealogy expert, tracing their heritage all the way to William Smith Bryan (1590 - 1667), Travis’ 11th great grandfather. Bryan and his wife, Catherine Morgan, were both born in County Clare, Ireland. During the Puritan Rebellion, William Smith Bryan attempted to gain the throne of Ireland and was dubbed “Prince William of Ireland” by his followers, at that time thought to be the only lineal descendant of ‘Bryan Borou,’ King of Ireland. Sometime about 1650 to 1660, William Smith Bryan and Catherine were exiled to Virginia by Oliver Cromwell for anti-English continued on page 22

James Joyce “The Dead”

January – February 2015

Sarah Hines,

2014 Arizona Colleen and Rose


couple of years ago, I embarked on an adventure that took me around Arizona, twice across the ocean, and connected me with wonderful new acquaintances, dear friends and great times! Hopefully when you’re done reading, you’ll want to go adventuring yourself! Here’s a little of the back story: 30 some years ago, some passionate Irish-Americans started the Phoenix St. Patrick’s Day Parade and Faire as an avenue for Irish and non-Irish alike to celebrate their heritage, and be heartily welcomed and “adopted” for the day. Through what eventually became the Arizona Colleen and Rose Programs, a young lady was selected “queen of the parade” and given an opportunity to show pride in her roots, represent her community, and experience much personal growth along the way. When a friend told me about her own amazing experience with this program, I wanted to get involved. After having a fantastic time at the Selection and enjoying fast friendship with the other contestants, I was thrilled to be named the 2014 Arizona Colleen and Rose – to exemplify a community dear to my heart! The titleholders started with a bang at some great local events, and then I got busy preparing the extensive questionnaire (and wardrobe!) for a trip to Ireland: the 55th annual Rose of Tralee International Festival! The fun began with May’s Regional Festival in Portlaoise, County Laois, Ireland. Immediately upon our arrival, 70 Roses from around the world were made to feel welcomed and honored throughout a packed calendar of special events. After individual and group interviews with judges, the week culminated in on-stage interviews, a talent showcase and the selection of about one-third of the Roses to return for the second part of the Festival in August. One of my highlights was a special reception in the small hometown of the Laois Rose. The sweet, hero’s welcome she received is what made the heart of the Festival clear: celebrating family and the qualities passed down through generations, networking the global Irish diaspora into a strong community, and cheering your head off in pride for your Rose! All of the young women in the Festival got on fabulously well, and looked forward to meeting again that August in Tralee! After being one of the girls selected to continue on, my Mom, sister and I met up with Mary from the Chandler-Tullamore Twinning Board (a Sister-Cities organization), reconnected with several dear friends, and then travelled home for many more events around The Valley and in Sedona. Returning to Ireland in August for the Rose Tour and International Festival was “great craic”!

Starting in Ennis— Phoenix Sister City—I had the best time with Mary Howard and TJ Waters from the Twinning Board. Then teaming up with Katie, the Southern California Rose, we headed to Dublin to meet the rest of the Roses. The Tour started there with a formal dinner, complete with a not-so-formal game of Rock ‘n’ Roll Bingo! and then made its way through several counties on the road to Tralee. Stops were made at heritage sites, small towns, large towns, the home counties of two Regional Roses, and a castle/manor house before arriving at our destination. After 5 days of touring, we pulled into Tralee, hit the ground running and never looked back! Near the end of the Festival, we took time to absorb the last 10 days and it was incredible: we had traveled across the country, been honored guests in a beautiful assortment of situations and signed hundreds of autographs. We had made fast friends with 32 wonderful and indispensable Escorts, 32 sweet and smart Rosebuds

Declan McLaughlin from Belfast and Lauren Curran from Co. Kerry

continued on page 22

The Desert Shamrock

Hines family in Rose Dome

January – February 2015


Allene JoAnn Dugan, Age 14


orn in Scottsdale, Allene and her parents, Jeff and Maureen, live in rural Maricopa. There they can enjoy the outdoors and have ten horses on the property, along with cats and dogs. Allene is a Freshman at Sequoia Secondary School. Her father is descended from the Doogan clan, and her mom is both Irish and Scottish from her paternal side. Starting music lessons at five years old, she has learned to play the piano, electric guitar, mandolin, fiddle, banjo, pennywhistle, and the guitar (6-string and 12-string). Her very first guitar was a 1970’s Alvarez 6 string. That’s a favorite, as is the ukulele, which she shared “makes me happy when I hear it.” Allene like all styles of music, but her favorites are an eclectic variety with ‘90s punk, “old” Country, Irish, Folk, Rock, and Jazz. Allene loves old TV sitcoms and old movies. In her spare time, she enjoys painting, writing poetry, and horseback riding. She is an accomplished vocalist and performs at weddings, private and charity events. She teams up with her music teacher (since age 10), Trevor Jones, to perform at Irish pubs, like Rula Bula in Tempe and O’Shay’s in Maricopa. The pair met through Trevor’s wife, Jeanne, when she and Maureen Dugan taught together and became such good friends. Their accolades about Allene and her accomplishments soar. “She’s an old soul, Trevor explained. “Most of the world’s melodies come from folk songs, child ballads. She can get into the soul of her song. Anyone can mechanically perform but Allene can sing to and for the audience. That’s huge.” For college, she’s looking at choices. Smart Art College is a top runner. She wants to complete


an artwork portfolio to earn college credit. Mrs. Lauren Miller, her art instructor for three years, is an enthusiastic mentor in helping her achieve these aspirations. Pictured together in the photo, they are each wearing Napa Vineyard by Burt’s Bees, a company Allene supports because they do not have animal testing in their labs. She’s a minimalist but thought she’d don the red lipstick for the interview. Her style is vintage, spunky, and fun! Her parents say the artistic talents skipped a generation. Maureen’s mom sang and her uncles were professional musicians. Allene’s great grandmother was an opera singer on a local level. Jeff ’s mother and nieces are gifted that way. When asked if she’s been told she’s a music prodigy, Allene quickly responded, “No. I consider a prodigy someone who plays amazing technically. I learn and work at each one.” She plays mostly with chord charts and by ear, more than sight reading printed music. During the school year, practicing is typically five to six hours a week. “I really enjoy acting,” her eyes shining. This is something new in her life. Although she auditioned and was cast as “Jan” in the recent school musical, Grease, she had too many music performances scheduled to be able to do both. “I felt my music had to come first.” Allene’s goals include learning to play the cello, make a music video, and spend time living in Ireland. She’s never actually seen an East Indian sitar in person, but adds that to her list with a smile.

The Desert Shamrock

January – February 2015

Current photos by Ann Niemann

Elizabeth “Libby” Carrie Decker, age 17


homework with academics as orn and raised in the her first priority. Phoenix/Paradise Valley Libby’s passion though is area, Libby lives with excelling as an Irish dancer. her parents, David and Denise She attends the Michael Decker, and older brother T.J. Patrick Gallagher School Her dad is an Arizona native of Irish Dance, located at whose family has been here 32nd Street and Greenway. since 1912. Denise owns and She’s been a student of teaches Little Devils GymnasMichael Pat’s for ten years, tics in the Valley. and believes she would Libby’s maternal grandnot have achieved success parents, Frank and Eileen without his instruction. Leavy, are well-known icons Michael Pat danced as the in the Arizona Irish Comlead in the show Riverdance munity, having emigrated for a number of years, is a from Ireland in 1953. The World champion, and has Decker family went back to a Master’s degree from the Ireland every other sumUniversity of Limerick. mer since the children were Before big international babies. They spent the sumcompetitions, she dances mers on the farm where their six days a week, but usually Nana was born in County her schedule is dancing four Wexford. Libby feels very days a week. Libby shares, lucky she and her brother “I have found that danchave gotten to know all of Grandfather Frank Leavy their Irish cousins and to have ers must put in more time spent time with Nana and Papa Leavy there. than going to dance class at the studio. Practicing at T.J. is a sophomore at St. Louis University and is a home, working out, and stretching should be part of collegiate swimmer, while Libby is a club diver on her your training.” varsity high school team as a Junior at Xavier College Her abilities and dedication have resulted in Preparatory. She loves to read with favorites including achieving being a five-time Western Region Oireachtas To Kill a Mockingbird, the Harry Potter series and for champion, North American champion and two-time the Lord of the Rings. Any “spare” time is devoted to runner-up, and placed as high as fifth in the world.

She has been fortunate not to have suffered any major injuries. What has been challenging to her are the results at times. “Though I have had a lot of great success and can appreciate that,” Libby said, “I have also had disappointments in which I feel I have danced very well but the results do not always reflect that.” She advises, “I have learned that being nervous or stressed out is a distraction because it takes away from your dancing. It doesn’t matter whether the judges liked your dancing or not, all that should matter is if you feel you have danced your best once you have walked off stage.” This past summer, Libby attended the Oxbridge program at Oxford University in Libby and England, taking two classes and meeting new dive partner, friends for the month. She’ll be headed to the Jessica Knight East coast this summer to visit more college campuses and decide on which one and the course of study she wants to pursue. Life is full!

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January – February 2015


...continued from page 18

insurgent activities. He is said to have been “dropped” at Gloucester Beach, Virginia. He arrived in Virginia with a shipload of personal belongings and his wife, eleven sons, and three daughters. They were among the first English to bring horses to the British colony of Virginia. They later both died there. For Travis, he has “so many ideas for projects.” He affirms, “Hard work and passion are the values I regard most highly in people and expect from myself. Communication and honesty is what I look for in those I’m closest to.” His advice for up and coming filmmakers is, “Don’t let failure scare you. Make as many films as you can and learn from your mistakes.” With any spare time, Travis enjoys hanging out with his dog, Bandit, and spending as much non-work time as he can with actress girlfriend, Michelle Palermo.

Above: The Dubliners in Arizona Right: At Irish Cultural Center with Chas Moore

In discussing the tragedy of human trafficking featured in The Desert Shamrock’s November-December edition, Travis is filming a short documentary for the

Phoenix Dream Center to create greater public awareness. Go to to follow his work and for links to watch his films.

...continued from page 19

(and yes, Lauren Curran—mine—was the best!), and connected with well over a million people in person, over television, online and through lively, packed parade routes. It was truly the trip of a lifetime! Crossing the ocean twice in one summer made me further appreciate my ancestors’ immigration. When they left home for America in the 1840s, there was little chance of them ever returning to Ireland. The opportunity to honor them and show that their journey and hard work was worthwhile is something I cherish – by God’s miraculous provision they succeeded in building a better life for their children and descendants!

Weaver at Avoca Woolen Mills, Co. Wicklow

Young Ambassadors and Ulster Scots Agency, Belfast

Parade route in Tralee


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January – February 2015

Gemma Storrar Photography

Celtic Youth I

’ll graduate from ASU in May with a degree in Theatre and minors in both Dance and Music Performance. I serve as the Friends of St. Patrick AZ Chapter Vice President, was the 2014 AZ Colleen Princess and the 2013 Young Ambassador to the Saint Patrick Centre in Northern Ireland. My Irish ancestry hails from Counties Cork, Kerry, and Derry.


y parents picked my name because they fell in love with Scotland and the Amazing Grace hymn. I’m a descendant of six Irish American families. I love cooking and being a book lover helped me become an Honors student at Millennium High School in Litchfield Park. My dad’s service with the Air Force means I have lived half my life in the UK, enabling me to visit Ireland and kiss the Blarney Stone! 2014 Arizona Irish Lass.

Photo: I won the longest red hair award with 38" at the Redhead Convention in County Cork.

Photo: Shows vintage look during baking demo.



Caroline Higgins-Nallen

attend Brophy College Preparatory and I am Irish on both sides of my family! My Mom and Dad were both born and raised in Co. Offaly; my father in Banagher and my mother in Birr. I enjoy diving, practicing the piano, and spending time with friends and family.


y passion is my trumpet and playing in the Arizona State University Marching Band. I’m majoring in criminology with a minor in psychology and I’m interested in all things military history. I hope to be the 4th generation of McGraw’s to enter into military service. 2013 Arizona Irish Lass.

Photo: Birr Castle, County Offaly, Ireland


attend Arizona School for the Arts, where I am Junior. I have been singing and playing the piano since I was very little. I love visiting my family in Ireland, and singing and playing Celtic music. 2010 Little Miss Shamrock.

The Desert Shamrock

Photo: Kylemore Abbey, County Galway January – February 2015



The Desert Shamrock

January – February 2015

by Caroline Woodiel


t can be amazing how fast the time flies. Before we know it we find ourselves looking at our mother or father in the mirror.  As with all labors of love passing the torch of our passions to the next generation is a high priority.  Introducing our children to the culture, stories, and histories of our past allows them to grow and continue the traditions we set in place.  The McClelland Library is working to create programming and activities to help parents and grandparents bridge these gaps

and pass the Celtic torch to continue the legacy. One of the most enriching cultural experiences the Library currently offers children is our monthly Family Story Hour. Diane Ahern, the developer and director of the program, takes care to promote literacy through discussion and crafts in every session. “The goal of Family Story Hour is to introduce and promote children’s

literature through Irish topics and Irish authors,” states Diane. While each program introduces myths and stories of tradition, it also tackles the world of today from a uniquely Irish perspective. Diane emphasizes, “There are more modern topics we are trying to touch on. We are promoting modern authors in addition to traditional stories of Irish heritage.” Family Story Hour meets on the first Saturday of the month, except for January of this year, from 10:30 am to 12:30 pm in the Norton Room in the Library. In addition to special child-focused events, the Library looks to include children in our everyday services. The Library contains a children’s section with both fiction and nonfiction books on Ireland and Celtic traditions.  Children can come in and read a classic story or work on a report for class about their family history or Ireland as a nation. The exhibit currently being shown, “The Cowgirl Who Became a Justice: Sandra Day O’Connor,” includes a guide to curriculum for parents and teach-

Teacher Diane Ahern

ers in addition to educational activities. The Library has Justice O’Connor’s civics game, iCivics, in a station for children to play while learning about civic responsibility and the function of our government. The exhibit also contains a fun station where children can dress up like a Supreme Court Justice and take their picture at the highest bench in the land.    As the Library moves forward we will be developing more and more children and family programming and activities.  The McClelland Library and Irish Cultural Center are blessed with some wonderful former teachers who volunteer their time to make the family experience exceptional.  Bringing your children and grandchildren is a way to connect together and build a bridge through time.  Check in with us frequently, in person or online at www., and come and see what we have to offer.  You will be surprised at all the Center and Library have for you and your family.


Passing the Celtic Torch

Apply To Become A Young Ambassador


he Young Ambassador Program is organized through the Friends of Saint Patrick - Arizona Chapter and the Saint Patrick Centre, Northern Ireland. It is designed to promote a greater understanding of the shared cultural heritage of Northern Ireland in North America.  Open to women and men, ages 20 to 25, he/ she must complete an application on the website at between January 15 and March 17, 2015. Applicants are expected to have a basic knowledge of the history and culture of Northern Ireland, which they can build upon while there. Following an interview process, the successful candidate will travel to Downpatrick, County Down for 15 days in June 2015. 

They will explore various aspects of the history and traditions of Ireland and develop their own cultural dissertation on a mutually agreed upon topic. Upon returning home, the dissertation, which typically ranges from 7 to 15 pages double-spaced, is submitted within one month. Following a successful review, he/she will formally be made a “Young Ambassador.“ The aim of the Young Ambassador Program is to establish a network of informed and influential individuals in North America who will actively represent Northern Ireland throughout their lives. Northern Ireland provides an incredibly diverse platform to learn about many social and cultural aspects of contemporary and historical life in Ireland as well as developing a model for community reconciliation which is relevant to many cities in

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North America. Young Ambassadors will develop a meaningful and ongoing relationship with Chapters of Friends of Saint Patrick, the Saint Patrick Centre, and organizations linked to the Program. They will continue to represent them, when appropriate, for the rest of their lives.  Accommodations and travel will be covered by the Program but food and beverage costs will be the responsibility of the successful candidate.  For further information, please visit the website or contact Glenda Walker at 602-2771376 (after noon). New members of the Friends of Saint Patrick are welcome.  Representing the Phoenix chapter, past Young Ambassadors include Sarah Hines, Kelsey Kelleher, and Audrey Sullivan.

January – February 2015


The Passing of an Era By (Rev.) John Cunningham, Ph.D. Cand. Religious Studies Instructor, Arizona State University


e will never see them again. They were a cadre that is rapidly disappearing. But not long ago priests from Ireland ran the Catholic Church in Arizona. Between 1945 and 1970, 54 newly-ordained left the Emerald Isle to minister in our growing state. In addition to these permanent clergy, another 44 temporarily worked here during that time. The funerals of two of these stalwarts took place in recent weeks: Msgr. John McMahon, 93, and Fr. William Waldron, 88. Only a dozen of the Irish clergy are still living. Their departure represents the passing of an era in Arizona church history and leaves me nostalgic for their heyday not long ago and the unique Irish spirit they embodied. Fr. John McMahon, with whom I lived for three years, was one of a kind. I remember him up on ladders checking the AC, tarring roofs, working his fundraising magic with the fat cats on Camelback Mountain, hosting St. Patrick’s Day dances, Italian and Polish events, Cinco de Mayo fiestas, New Year’s Eve parties, school festivals, barbequing

steaks at the annual appreciation dinner for parish workers and volunteers, funding missions in Mexico, constructing St. Theresa Church in Phoenix, financing the expansion of Seton High School in Chandler, spearheading the purchasing and developing of Mt. Rev. John Cunningham and Msgr. John McMahon Claret Retreat Center, and building the new temperament more sanguine. Who conducts a wake St. Francis Church on or funeral with warmth and wit quite like an Irish the Salt River Indian Reservation. He was largely priest? For them life was a celebration. They reveled instrumental in securing the historic visits of Pope in conversation and visiting people, especially the John Paul II and later Mother Teresa to Phoenix. A sick. In their parishes they delighted in gathering day going around with McMahon was enough to make you tired. Talented, energetic, and fun, he was the folks, fostering social ties and friendships, so that Catholics as well as others would feel at home. also completely committed to his ministry. When I interviewed the last of the Irish priests, as Many of today’s younger priests I would call part of my dissertation project, they told me that as sanctuary men, that is, they gravitate to pietistic seminarians they hadn’t a clue what Arizona was like. rituals, proper for men of the cloth but narrow in Most hadn’t been more than a hundred miles from scope, betraying a tendency to be spiritually selfhome, yet thought nothing of going thousands of absorbed. Some maintain miles to start a new life in a strange land, where they rigid clerical boundaries believed God was calling them. Once here, their atbetween themselves and titude was the same. As one said, “We rolled up our the laity, like religious sleeves and got to work wherever we were needed.” specialists prepared to do Arizona’s Irish clergy were ordinary in many this but not that, availrespects. Back in the 1940s, ‘50s, and ‘60s, there was able at certain times and a lot they did not see, causes they did not take up, not others. In contrast, trails they did not blaze. They were not courageous the priests from Ireland prophets or innovative theologians. But they were were community men. dedicated, generous, down to earth, and available to To be sure, they led their the people they served. In their time and in their people in prayer and by good-natured way, they “kept the fires burning” (to their good example. But their spirituality was more use a metaphor from the days of turf fires in Irish cottages), bringing light and warmth to many a soul. earthy and holistic, their

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Siobhan O’Connor Tobin’s mother, Mary, is from Kilmore, Co. Roscommon, and her dad, Jimmy, was from Ballinmore Bridge, Co. Galway


P.O. Box 1768 10611 N. 11th St. Salem, NH 03079 Phoenix, AZ 85020

Electrical, Mechanical, Plastics, Metals, and Contract Mfg. Joe Lewis Cell 617-510-9260 Joe Jr. 603-365-1301


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January – February 2015

When Your A/C Throws a Tantrum, Better Call Antrim

Formerly O’Dowd & Associates Mortgage Co. Long-time Phoenix Lender

The O’Dowd Team

Whether you are buying a new home or want to refinance your current home, call your neighborhood lender Pete O’Dowd or Colleen O’Dowd Cutler to get pre-approved. FHA, VA, Conventional and Reverse Mortgages


1599 E. Orangewood Ave. #200 Phoenix, AZ 85020 MB092214 • NMLS# 1007154 • Pete O’Dowd NMLS# 166309 • Colleen Cutler NMLS# 852437

Valleywide Service Family and Locally Owned

“Treating our customers like family with the highest level of honesty, integrity, and quality.”

Anthony Gilmore’s ancestry is from Co. Antrim, Northern Ireland and wife Talitha’s great grandmother is from Co. Cork, Ireland.

480.664.6575 PO Box 7264 Chandler, AZ 85246 • 480.664.6575

Licensed, Bonded, Insured ROC#272807

We’re on the lookout for the one million of Irish, Scottish, and Welsh descent. The more successful the campaign, the more philanthropic we can be to support Arizona’s Celtic nonprofits, going national and international. Hey, we could even help restore a castle!

$1 Count Me In

Register as “I’m 1 in a Million!” Go to our website’s home page and join the Count! Once you select this perk, you can increase your contribution to include each person in your family at $1 each. So, a family of five would be $5. Receive a beautifully designed Certificate.

The Count Continues! Go to Click link on home page NEW site launched at Online eMagazine editions at “Like” us at Photo: Irish Cultural Center, Phoenix, AZ; Credit: Bob Rink

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January – February 2015



Emigrated from Ennis, Co. Clare, Ireland in 1972

Socks in the Frying Pan and the Outside Track Sun., March 1 | 7:00 p.m. Tickets: $29.50–$37.50 Blending traditional Celtic melodies with innovative rhythmic and melodic garnish

Zakir Hussain and the Celtic Connection Tue., March 24 | 7:00 & 9:00 p.m. Tickets: $34.50–$52.50 The tabla virtuoso brings together the greatest Indian musicians with stellar Celtic artists

Altan Sun., March 29 | 4:00 & 7:00 p.m. Tickets: $37.50–$47.50

Maternal side “Murphy” came from County Cork and father’s side “Morrison” arrived from County Waterford

Irish folk and traditional music group from County Donegal


EXPERIENCE IRELAND Sat. & Sun., March 14 & 15 | 9:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m. Tickets: Included with paid museum admission; free for Circle of Friends donors Enjoy traditional music, crafts, Irish dancing, and exhibit talks— it’s the perfect way to celebrate Celtic culture!

Tickets and details at Programming subject to change MUSICAL INSTRUMENT MUSEUM | 480.478.6000 4725 E. Mayo Blvd., Phoenix, AZ 85050 (Corner of Tatum & Mayo Blvds., just south of Loop 101)


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January – February 2015

Robert Burns Supper Plan to go!

Saturday, January 24, 2015 Cocktail Reception 6:00 – 7:00 pm Program, formal dinner & entertainment from 7:00pm-10pm

The birth date of Scotland’s own National Poet, Robert Burns


nce a year, a special event takes place around the world. It’s been part of Scottish culture for over 200 years where men and women dress up formally to meet with descendants and lovers of Scotland, for a gastro-literary celebration of the life and works of the poet Robert Burns. It is an event that transcends time, geographical borders, political and religious beliefs, to bring people together in a traditional Scottish feast. Men are encouraged to wear kilts & jackets, trews, tuxedos, suits or blazer with a tartan tie, while women don evening dresses with tartan sashes or shawls, tartan skirts with blouse or sweater. The Caledonian Society of Arizona is the single largest Celtic organization in the state of Arizona and our mission is to promote Scottish culture through art, education and athletics. Each year the

NEW LOCATION THIS YEAR! Phoenix Country Club 2901 N 7th St Phoenix, AZ 85014

organization provides grants to Highland athletes, dancers, and/or any other individuals or organizations whose mission, project, or program promotes Scottish heritage. We were recently granted a proclamation by the Governor’s office that March is officially Arizona State Celtic Month. The evening’s program includes: • Highest quality, traditional Scottish menu • Including a toast to, and proper service of the Haggis • Glenmorangie Single Malt whisky and Tasting • Imported fine Scottish beer • Full bar and wine available • Live band - Scottish tunes, songs and Highland Dancers • Lovely country club setting, cocktail reception on the golf course For more information, visit


Tickets: $70.00 per person and are available online: MENU • Cup of Roasted Leek & Potato Soup • Garden Green Salad with Walnuts, Cherry Tomatoes & Hazelnut Vinaigrette • Stout Steak Pie with Garlic Carrot Pea Conundrum • Mashed local source Organic Turnip • Haggis done “Old World Style” • Barley, Carrot, Turnip Medley • Served with rolls & butter Contact & for more info: Lori Cameron | 480.280.7872 Thom Von Hapsburg | 602.882.6490


Will be Celebrating

The Caledonian Society of Arizona

My grandmother is from Tiree, an island in the Inner Hebrides of Scotland

Kilt Rental USA Scottish Made Kilts. Rent - Sell - New - Used 15821 N 79th Street, Suite 2 Scottsdale, AZ 85260 1.877.KILT.SHOP 480.460.0907

My grandmother is from Tiree, an island in the Inner Hebrides of Scotland

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January – February 2015



Childhood in Early Wales By Lynn Herdman Mascarelli


ittle ones in Wales identify at a very young age with the word Cymry, which first appeared in a poem in 633 AD. In fact, its people call themselves Cymry; the country, Cymru, their language Cymraeg...its literary tradition, one of the oldest in Europe. There is a cultural awareness here that seeps into a Welsh child’s consciousness. Are they not required to read at some point in their studies, the works of Aneirin and Taliesin circa late 7th Century? In their elders they sense the hardy, strong-willed personhood/statehood of Wales and its Saxon origins standing fast despite invasions and immigration, the imperialism of neighbors and encroachment on government and lands. Welsh children were not strangers to lives lived in a dwelling on the side of a mountain, in a city along an irregular coastline, or a mining town creeping up the side of a hill. In earlier times in a medieval setting, families lived in timber houses built in a cluster around a Great Hall. Later landowners set themselves apart by imitating English style brick houses and then there were bastides or castle towns close to military camps and fortresses after the Conquest.

Children lived in these settings for better or worse and back then, ate what was available to their region, whether inland or by the sea: foods like laverbread, cawl or those wonderful cakes, bara brith and pic ear y maen. And of course, they grew up with more than a few versions of Welsh Rarebit since cheeses were plentiful in Wales and considered to be the poor man’s “meat;” for England, it was the rabbit. It would seem poverty hounded the young; as soon as they were able they were required to contribute to the family. The youngest among them considered a burden and even at age five, forced to assist in the family economy. Life for children was bleak in medieval Wales. Psycho-historian Lloyd deMause in his book, The Evolution of Childhood (1974), states, “The history of childhood is a nightmare from which we have only recently begun to awaken.” Legal entries indicate a system of fosterage employed in medieval Irish and Welsh traditions: it was about money and the possibility of inheriting land through relationships. A father could foster his offspring with another family and as tenants, the children worked for the family, did their bidding. If they remained

Readers at Seamus McCaffrey’s Pub in downtown Phoenix


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for a year, they earned the right to inherit the land. It meant prosperity for both houses: an exchange of services for privilege. Later, many were placed in philanthropic workhouses. These were desperate times and there was more than one Oliver in Wales in the 18th Century. Adhering to the common belief that money flowed from parent to child was not common among the working class and the poor. Often working side by side with their mothers in the mines for long hours, children were sent into shafts too small for adults. Half of all children under the age of five died and others did not live past the age of ten. When the Education Act of 1870 requiring basic standards was passed, it pulled them away from factories and mines and into the classroom. Unfortunately, space does not permit for all I had hoped to write on this subject but, in closing, I am reminded of the words of a woman I never thought I would quote. The late Diana, Princess of Wales, once remarked, “Hugs can do great amounts of good especially for children.” Granted, she kept it simple. Certainly the children described above could have used some of those and hopefully that was the case. Lynn is a former high school teacher of art, history, and political science. She is a potter, illustrator, muralist in public venues and private homes, and wordsmith. Frequently a featured artist at the Irish Cultural Center, Celtic landscapes intrigue her. Her mom, a Williams, is totally Welsh with ancestry as far back as 1700s and the Isle of Anglesley.

January – February 2015

at ASU–Notre Dame Game

Photos by Ann Niemann




4 5


Dublin City University

6 7


See more Out & About photos at


1. DCU President, Brian MacCraith 2. Dr. Martin McAleese 3. ASU, Kathryn Scheckel and Sr. VP, Sethuraman “Panch” Panchanthan 4. Mrs. MacCraith 5. DCU, Richard O’Kennedy 6. DCU VP, Alan Harvey 7. Nickey Brennan, GAA President 2006-2009 8. John Hartnett 9. Kevin Byrne, Vice Consul

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January – February 2015



Arizona Colleen Programs

Irish Foundation of Arizona

The Arizona Colleen and Rose of Tralee Selection, Arizona Irish Lass and Little Miss Shamrock programs select young ladies of Irish descent to participate as spokespersons at area events. Prize packages for each competition. The Colleen wins a trip to Ireland and $1,000 scholarship. For details, visit or contact Erin Sweeney-Morgan, Chair, 602-373-7931,

Formed in the 1970s to bring together people of Irish heritage in Arizona, the group sponsors social events throughout the year. Meetings are held on the first Wednesday of each month at 7pm at the ICC. Contact: Anna O’Hara, President, 480-345-9517

Arizona Law Enforcement Emerald Society (ALEES)

This bagpipe and drum school is dedicated to excellence in bagpiping as well as camaraderie and fun. All levels of students are welcome! Instructors are brought from Scotland, Ireland, Canada and the U.S. Contact: Eric Poleski, Administrator,, 702-270-8974 home, 702-340-8859 cell, 928-556-3161,

ALEES was incorporated in 2004 to promote and celebrate accomplishments of Irish-Americans in law enforcement. Its members, families and friends support ALEES Foundation, a non-profit 501(c) (3) created in 2012 to provide financial assistance to the families of injured and fallen brothers and sisters in Arizona law enforcement. If interested in becoming a member or volunteering, contact us at

The Caledonian Society of Arizona Our mission is to promote Scottish culture through art, education, and athletics. Each year we grant scholarships to aspiring and professional Highland athletes, musicians, dancers and/or any other individuals or organizations whose mission, project or program promotes Scottish heritage. We meet the 2nd Thursday of each month for drinks, entertainment and Scottish fun! Everyone welcome!

Celtic Harvest Festival Sedona, Saturday, September 20 at Verde Valley School Enjoy the sounds of Celtic music and dance, storytelling, and poetry, wares for sale, workshops by artisans, sheepherding demos, art of falconry, Fairy Village children’s activities, lots of food and drink! New this year Scottish heavy athletics! Adults $15; Teens $5; under 11 yrs. old free.

DAUGHTERS OF SCOTIA DESERT THISTLE LODGE #260 Formed in 2005 to promote Scottish heritage. Ladies of ancestry, married to a Scot or born in Scotland may join. We hold monthly meetings, tea socials, a teahouse at the AZ Highland Games and attend Scottish events. We support Highland dance competition and other charities. Contact: Bethany Tso at 602-770-7565 or

Friends of Saint Patrick Centre – AZ Chapter The nonprofit organization was formed in 2011 to promote positive relationships between Arizona and Northern Ireland. Through education, cultural exchanges and charitable events, the Chapter nurtures St. Patrick’s legacy. Meetings held quarterly at the ICC. Contact: Glenda Walker at 602-277-1376,

Grand Canyon Celtic Arts Academy It offers classes in Irish music, dance, and language to children ages 7+ (July 14-18, 2014) and adults (July 15-17, 2014). Come learn something new or improve your current skills with members of Runa and Zac Legér. Classes in fiddle, whistle, guitar, bodhrán, Irish language, dance, and more! Contact: Kari Barton, 928-600-1365,

Irish American Club West Valley Our purpose is to bring together individual of Irish descent and others interested in Irish culture through our monthly socials. Everyone is welcome; it is part of our Irish hospitality. The Club meets monthly October through May for dinner and dancing at the Sun City Country Club. Dues are $10 per year. For information or a complementary newsletter, contact Maura McConnell, Secretary, 623-933-3698,

Irish Cultural Center The mission of the ICC is to provide a link between the people of Arizona and the people of Ireland and other Celtic cultures. The Academy of Celtic Studies and the Celtic Concert Series are major programs. The Center is available for private rentals; call direct to 602-258-0109. Info and tours: 602-392-7850,


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Jim Thomson U.S. School of Piping & Drumming

Los San Patricios de Arizona (St. Patrick’s Battalion) The organization honors the 150-year-old bond of friendship existing today between Mexico and Ireland. Each year, a fiesta celebrates with a dinner saluting those of Irish and Mexican heritage. Contacts: Wm. Howard O’Brien, El Capitán, 480-951-1152,; John Reilly, Captain, 602-242-1555; Héctor Corona, el Teniente (Lieutenant), 602-722-7589; Felix Corona and Ernie Patino, El Tenientes.

Northern Arizona Celtic Heritage Society The nonprofit organization is dedicated to presenting, promoting, and preserving Celtic culture. Each year we host the Arizona Highland Celtic Festival (July 19-20, 2014), the Jim Thomson U.S. School of Piping & Drumming (July 11-18, 2014), and the Grand Canyon Celtic Arts Academy (July 15-18, 2014). Contact Jude McKenzie,, 928-556-3161,

Phoenix St. Patrick’s Day Parade & Faire Committee Formed in 1983, the Committee has the responsibility for organizing the annual Phoenix St. Patrick’s Day Parade and the Faire that follows, which are held on Saturday (the closest before or falling on March 17); and the Arizona Colleen Programs throughout the year. It is entirely volunteers and meets the second Tuesday of each month at 7 pm at the ICC. Contact: Harry Sexton, President, 602-863-9198.

Phoenix St. Patrick’s Day Parade It is one of the largest parades in Arizona! Celebrate being Irish with the entire Valley. Coming up Saturday, March 14, 2015, 10am; route is Third Street south from Sheridan to Moreland, FREE. Contact: John Corcoran, Chair, 623-939-1183,

Phoenix St. Patrick’s Day Faire Fun for the entire family, it showcases Irish music, step dancing, Irish and Celtic arts and crafts, plus traditional Irish foods and beverages. Coming up Saturday, March 14, 2015, 10am-5pm at the Irish Cultural Center and Margaret Hance Park grounds. Contact: Mary Moriarty, Chair, 602-258-0109,

Riordan Mansion State Historic Park Built in 1904 for two Irish brothers, Riordan Mansion is an architectural treasure offering a glimpse into the lives of Flagstaff’s early Irish settlers. The “fairy ring” seen on the outdoor self-guided tour hints at the Irish tradition of providing fairies an outdoor dancing space, preventing mischief inside. For admission rates and hours call 928-779-4395.

Scottish-American Military Society (SAMS), Flagstaff Chartered on April 21, 1981 in North Carolina, membership is open to all Active Duty and Veterans of the USA and the British Commonwealth who are of Scot or Scot-Irish lineage. For more information, contact SAMS Flagstaff Post 2000, George G. Shoemaker, 928-607-1600,


Chandler-Tullamore, Ireland Sister Cities Ellen Harrington, President 480-600-8509,,

January – February 2015

Michael Patrick Gallagher School of Irish Dance

Mary Hill-Connor, Committee Chairperson 602-635-9760,, Michael Patrick, TCRG, ADCRG, 602-896-4078 Ann Paitel, TCRG 602-316-3199

Tucson-Roscommon, Ireland Sister Cities

Maguire Academy of Irish Dance

Colleen Kelly Beaman, Chair 520-743-7979, P.O. Box 42543, Tucson, AZ 85745; and Facebook

Classes in Phoenix, Tucson, Dallas, and Houston; (520) 319-0204. Darren Maguire, TCRG, ADCRG


Maschino School of Highland Dance


Kari Maschino, 480-242-7760,,, Gilbert, Tempe, Peoria

The Strand Traditional Irish and Irish-American Music, 480-208-4687,,,

American Safety Shoe Co. • Shoemobile Available • ESD SHOES • STEEL & NON-STEEL TOED SHOES • SLIP-RESISTANT SOLES

Watch Those Doggone Toes!

1605 W. University #108 Tempe, AZ 85281 (480) 894-1881 FAX (480) 967-8865

Tim Caufield’s Great Grandfather John emigrated from Co. Galway, Ireland in the mid-1800’s


Phoenix-Ennis, Ireland Sister Cities

Subway® D-Backs Fan Fest to be held on February 22

PHOENIX – The Arizona Diamondbacks (@Dbacks) will host the 11th annual SUBWAY® D-backs Fan Fest (#DbacksFanFest) on Sunday, February 22, 2015 from Noon-4:00 p.m. at Chase Field, with early VIP entry at 11:00 a.m. The free event will offer fans unprecedented access to current players, coaches, alumni and broadcasters, including autograph and photo sessions on the field. Last year’s event drew an estimated 25,000 fans to Chase Field.   SUBWAY® D-backs Fan Fest highlights expected, include: • Autograph sessions for kids and adults • Tours of the D-backs clubhouse • Photograph sessions with players • Arizona Diamondbacks Foundation Yard Sale • Inflatables for kids • Opportunity to hit in the batting cages • Q&A sessions with the players • Social Media Zone   Fans can register for text alerts leading up to the event by texting FANFEST to 76925. For additional information regarding SUBWAY® D-backs FanFest, please visit or call 602.462.FEST (3378).

Michael Londra’s

Celtic Fire

Sun. March 8, 2015 · 2:30pm On Sale to Members April 28 On Sale to General Public July 7

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w w w . C h a n d l e r C e n t e r . o r g • 4 8 0.78 2.26 8 0 January – February 2015



JANUARY-FEBRUARY 2015 [All events are in Arizona USA unless otherwise noted]

Irish Cultural Center (ICC) McClelland Irish Library

Public Walk-In Hours (Tours, Library & Genealogy) Tuesday-Saturday • 10am – 3pm Wednesday Evenings (Library only) • 3pm – 8pm Open Other Hours for Scheduled Classes, Meetings & Events • 1106 N. Central Ave., Phoenix 85004 • See ad page 25

Twice Monthly Ceili

(Irish Social Dancing) All ages; instructor & live music Fridays • 7pm – 9pm • Jan. 9, 16; Feb. 13; Mar. 13, 20. $6; cash bar

“The Cowgirl Who Became a Justice: Sandra Day O’Connor” Interactive Art Exhibition McClelland Irish Library, Phoenix Now through May 23; $5-$10 Exhibit Tour Tues. – Sat. • 10am – 3pm; Wed. • 3pm – 8pm See story in September-October 2014 edition

Nola Yergen’s Fabulous Costumes On Display at Sky Harbor Int’l. Airport, Phoenix Terminal 3 in the outer part of the building near Starbucks. Now through June See story in July-August 2014 edition

Journey through the Emerald Isle EXHIBIT

Two-Part Genealogy Workshop Saturday, January 24 - McClelland Irish Library Part 1 Getting Started with Irish Genealogy Research • 10:00am to12:00pm   Part 2 Locating Irish Ancestors Prior to Civil Registration • 1:00pm-3:00pm Presented by Miles Davenport Fees to be announced shortly on 602-864-2351;

Character Safari Writer’s Workshop with author, Jan Whalen Saturday, January 24 • 10:30pm to Noon $25 includes book, McClelland Library Lower Level, Norton Room Author Jan Whalen Write the stories of your life!

Robert Burns Supper The Caledonian Society of Arizona Saturday, January 24 • 6pm Phoenix Country Club 2901 N. 7th Street, Phoenix  85014 Tickets: $70 Formal Dinner Lori Cameron, 480.280.7872, Thom Von Hapsburg, 602.882.6490, See story page 29

St. Brigid’s Day

Westgate Entertainment District 6770 N. Sunrise Blvd Glendale, Arizona 85305 Pet Friendly! Live Irish Music! Strollers Welcome! Chip Timed 17k Run 8k USATF Sanctioned Run/Walk 4k Run/Walk; Irish “k” (a wee bit like a 1k!) See ad page 14

Sunday, February 1 Irish Cultural Center, Phoenix

Experience Ireland EVENT

Saturday, January 31 • 10:30am to 12:30pm McClelland Irish Library Presented by Joyce East and Mary Wilber Cost: Free; 602-864-2351,

Sat. & Sun. March 14-15 • 9am to 5pm Musical Instrument Museum 4725 E. Mayo Blvd, Phoenix, AZ 85050 Activities included with paid museum admission Tickets: $20 adults, $15 teens, $10 ages 4-12, free ages 3 and under. Make plans to join MIM for its fourth annual celebration of Irish music and culture at Experience Ireland. Enjoy music, crafts, Irish dancing and storytelling; it’s a perfect way to celebrate Celtic culture! or 480-478-6000

Family Story Hour Saturday, February 7 10:30am to 12:30pm McClelland Irish Library The Day the Crayons Quit by Drew Daywalt Free includes craft; 602-864-2351,

St. Patrick’s Day

2015 Arizona Colleen and Rose Selection

Tuesday, March 17 Irish Cultural Center, Phoenix

Saturday, February 7 • 5:30pm Phoenix Lodge 14424 N. 32nd Street, Phoenix

Zakir Hussain and the Celtic Connection IN CONCERT

Sunday, February 22 • Noon to 4 pm Free; Chase Field Stadium, Phoenix See story page 33

Tuesday, March 24, 7pm & 9pm MIM Music Theater 4725 E. Mayo Blvd, Phoenix, AZ 85050 This classical tabla virtuoso, considered a national treasure in his native India, brings together the greatest Indian musicians with stellar Celtic artists Tickets: $44.50-$52.50 (7pm); $34.50-$42.50 (9pm) or 480-478-6000 See ad page 28

Book Discussion Group


3rd Annual Smiling Irishman Saturday, February 21 Irish Cultural Center, Phoenix

SUBWAY® D-backs Fan Fest

January 3 – 30 Paula Cullison • travel writer / photographer Irish Cultural Center


Book Discussion Group

Saturday, February 28 • 10:30am to 12:30pm McClelland Irish Library Presented by Joyce East and Mary Wilber Cost: Free; 602-864-2351,

Socks in the Frying Pan and the Outside Track IN CONCERT Sunday, March 1 • 7pm MIM Music Theater 4725 E. Mayo Blvd, Phoenix, AZ 85050 Blending traditional Celtic melodies with innovative rhythmic and melodic garnish Tickets: $29.50-$37.50 or 480-478-6000 See ad page 28

Michael Londra’s Celtic Fire Sunday, March 8 • 2:30pm Chandler Center for the Arts, 480-782-2680 See ad page 33

Sunday, March 29, 4pm & 7pm Irish folk and traditional music group from County Donegal MIM Music Theater 4725 E. Mayo Blvd, Phoenix, AZ 85050 Tickets: $37.50-$47.50 or 480-478-6000 See ad page 28

SAVE THE DATE: D-backs Celtic Heritage Day Sunday, September 13 1:10 pm Game Multi-Media Events starting 90 minutes pre-game I’m 1 in a Million! EVENT Arizona Diamondbacks v. Los Angeles Dodgers Chase Field Stadium, Phoenix Details coming Sponsored in part by The Desert Shamrock

Kiss Me I’m Irish Fundraiser Run & Walk Saturday, March 14 • 7:17 am FUNDRAISER supports Prostate On-Site Project

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January – February 2015


The Desert Shamrock

January – February 2015

DesertShamrock Jan-Feb 2015 e-Magazine  

Serving over one million of Celtic ancestry in Arizona, The Desert Shamrock celebrates 25 years with feature profiles, music and book review...

DesertShamrock Jan-Feb 2015 e-Magazine  

Serving over one million of Celtic ancestry in Arizona, The Desert Shamrock celebrates 25 years with feature profiles, music and book review...