Last night we started a 10th anniversary project for the archives here at Irish Fest HQ: a sort of kind of documentary about the history of Irish Fest, told by the people who work here. The first session, filmed at the Boulevard Brewery tasting room by KCIF Technology Committee co-chair Tommy "Ken Burns" Regan and Snug staffer Nina "Whoever The Female Equivalent to Ken Burns Is" Krizman, involved two groups. First the founding board members, or at least the ones we could round up out the local old folks homes. Pat O'Neill, Bob Sullivan, Kyle Kelly, Ed Scanlon, Ed Follis and little old me. We shot the...um...breeze for an hour or a little over and could have gone on for 7 or 8 more about the birth and early days of the festival, that difficult first year, favorite memories, trials and triumphs.
Next up was a great reunion of some of the key players from the late great Westport Irish Festival, one of the two neighborhood events that married in 2003 to form the Kansas City Irish Fest. Some of those folks have continued on with KCIF, some haven't but they all had great stories to tell and great memories to share. And as an old Westport Festival volunteer bartender –my first job at an Irish festival– it was great to see them all together again.
Subsequent sessions will feature staff from the other parent festival, the Brookside Irish Fest, current and former KCIF board members, long time staff and volunteers. Speaking of which, if you are one of those long time volunteers and would like to be part of this project, drop me a line and you might get your pretty face on camera. The finished product, or pieces of it, will be shown at the fest and on social media sites, our website and YouTube. Watch for it!