All eyes will be smiling when the shopping district of historic Long Grove presents Irish Days, a three-day, outdoor celebration of Irish culture, music, food and beer -- including Long Grove's new Buffalo Creek Brewing.
The town's cobblestone streets get painted a shade of green this Saturday through Monday, Sept. 2-4, with bagpipers, folk bands, and dancers performing nonstop throughout the weekend.
If you goWhat: 28th annual Long Grove Irish Days festival
When: 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Sunday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday, Sept. 2-4
Where: 308 Old McHenry Road, Long Grove
Other event highlights this year include: a Dog Beauty contest, the Best Looking Men's Legs in a Kilt contest, the Wee Ones family area, the "Where's Paddy?" leprechaun hunt, and local merchants selling Irish-themed foods and goods.
During the holiday weekend homage to the Emerald Isle, historic downtown Long Grove will feature ongoing entertainment for the whole family.
Some of Chicago's top Irish musicians, singers and dancers will take the stage, with featured performances by Rory Makem, The Shannon Rovers Bagpipe Band, The McNulty Irish Dancers, Gavin Coyle, The Chancey Brothers, Joe Cullen & Kathleen Keane, and more.
Another favorite sight at Irish Days is the Dog Beauty Competition. All dogs are Irish on Irish Days, but those who dress the part are given extra credit.
The contest is open to any dog whose owner enters them the day-of at the competition area
by the Long Grove Information Center, 308 Old McHenry Road. Each day, a panel of children judges will crown an Irish Doggie King, Queen, Prince and Princess.
Harrington's Catering and Deli will fuel visitors with hand-carved corned beef sandwiches, fish and chips, and other traditional Irish foods. Additionally, there will be an area selling freshly-tapped craft beers, including Burning Red Amber Ale from Buffalo Creek Brewing, Guinness Stout and other brews / nonalcoholic drinks to quench all thirsts.
While a "Wee Ones" area will host Irish-themed crafts, face-painting, and games for kids, perhaps the most excitement and biggest laughs of the weekend will come each day in Fountain Square at the Best-Looking Men's Legs in a Kilt contest. Interested contestants should wear their best kilt and register the morning of the event.
To top it off, Irish Days will include a townwide "Where's Paddy?" leprechaun hunt that will take place each day of the event, bringing visitors in and out of the picturesque village's unique, independent businesses.
In addition to discounts and specials throughout town at local shops, such as the two Long Grove family-operated Irish stores, Irish Days will feature a central Gaelic Tent in Fountain Square to promote awareness of the Irish language and genealogy.
Representatives from the Irish American Heritage center will be on hand to discuss Irish cultural opportunities on the Northwest side of Chicago.
For details, visit the website or call (847) 634-0888.