By Doc Lawrence
Who would have thought that the gorgeous island with its friendly people would have to promote itself to Americans? “We have so much more now to offer than meets the eye,” one official told me as I was enjoying a glass of Jameson Irish Whiskey.
|The Atlantic Coast of Ireland|
The evening was emceed by masters the art of good humor and storytelling, an attribute that is part of the Irish DNA. Music was from Atlanta’s own Buddy O’Reilly Band (“Born in a pub and raised on concert and festival stage”), complete with an Irish step dancer who provided lessons to some daring audience members. Wielding fiddles and wooden flute, uilleann pipes (Irish bagpipes), guitar, bodhran, (Irish drum) harmonica and banjo, the band kept things festive in anticipation of things soon to come on St. Patrick’s Day.
Waterford Crystal was showcased along with Jameson, the dominant beverage served to guests. A tour of the Irish Atlantic Cost and cities like Dublin became a virtual “vacation” for a few moments during a lovely evening down South.
This is the year during the Civil War Sesquicentennial when Atlanta commemorates the siege and Battle of Atlanta, the burning of the city and the beginning of the March to the Sea. With these events, there are profound connections to Ireland and her people who settled here.
|The Buddy O'Rielly Band|
Another native of Ireland, Confederate General Patrick Cleburne was as a warrior and strategist, a major force in the Atlanta Campaign and the 1864 Battle of Atlanta.
|Atlanta's Legendary Irish-American|
Atlanta, with its heritage that includes the immortal Scarlett O’Hara, is the perfect place to begin a jump into Ireland. You can do this daily, non-stop, from our International airport.
More about Father O’Reilly: