The Irish Association of Manitoba

654 Erin Street

Winnipeg, Manitoba    R3G 2V9

This has been anything but a normal year for the Association as we confronted Covid-19.

The impact on the club finances has been immense. With the necessity to cancel St. Patrick’s celebrations & Folklorama, our two main fundraisers, in addition to losing all rental potential & club functions the association has generated no income since March. We have seen our share of good times and bad, but Covid-19 has been a complete game changer for our finances. Therefore the IAM board is asking for your support in it’s fundraising efforts.

Fundraising Irish Association of Manitoba

Dear Members,

As you know the Irish Association of Manitoba needs to fundraise to keep the doors open and continue to operate the Irish Club. We need your support now more than ever!

In addition to becoming a member, we are also offering sponsorship packages. Payments to start as of November 15/2020. Bronze to Gold packages can be paid in full if desired.

Bronze Sponsor - $100 ($25/month)

After 4 consecutive months of sponsorship:

1 fish and chip supper *

1 complimentary alcoholic or nonalcoholic beverage

Silver Sponsor - $180 ($45/month)

After 4 consecutive months of sponsorship:

2 fish and chips suppers*

2 complimentary alcoholic or nonalcoholic beverages

Gold Sponsor - $300 ($75/month)

After 4 consecutive months of sponsorship:

2 fish and chip suppers*

2 complimentary alcoholic or nonalcoholic beverages

2 tickets to the next St. Patrick’s Day Gala**

Platinum Sponsor - $1000 (payment in full)

4 fish and chip suppers*

1 complimentary bottle of wine

Advertising on the IAM website

Sponsors can also choose where they would like their funds allocated. These include but are not limited to:

• Roof Repairs

• Kitchen Upgrades

• Operating Budget

All sponsors will be recognized on the IAM website.

Please email [email protected] or visit

for more information.

Thank-you for your continued support.

*Meal/beverage sponsorship reward available until Jan 1, 2022.

**Meal rewards and Gala tickets will distributed in late February 2021

For more information & forms please click on the "Learn More" button below which will take you to the "Sponsorship Drive" page.

Learn More

Damien Bessette Scholarship Applications 

Deadline Friday Oct. 30, 2020

Damien Bessette Scholarships

The Board of Trustees will be accepting applications for 2020-21 scholarships until Friday October 30, 2020.

To be eligible to receive a scholarship, an applicant must:

• Be a voting member of the Irish Association of Manitoba for a period of at least three consecutive years prior to applying for a scholarship, or the child or grandchild of such a member, and

• Be a registered full time student in a program of at least one year duration at a Canadian college, university or other institution of post-secondary training, and not have previously received a Damian Bessette Scholarship.

Application forms may be obtained by contacting Bridgette Allen Hampton at [email protected]

See the "Damien Bessette Scholarship" page for the history of the scholarship

Halloween 2020 - message from the Irish Embassy

and remember…beware the banshee!

Dear Irish Community,

Spooky season is upon us once more, and although Halloween will look very different this year, we have put two events online together to explore Ireland as the #HomeOfHalloween:

Tuesday 27th October, 5pm EST

Did you know that Ireland has celebrated Halloween for over 1,000 years? Do you know why we carve pumpkins or wear masks? Do you know to be careful not to be drawn into the Other-world on Halloween Night? We have joined forces with our friends and colleagues in the Consulate General of Ireland New York to answer these questions and more!

With this year's celebrations a little different from what we are used to, let us take you on a journey of discovery through time and traditions, tracing the story of Halloween back and forth across the Atlantic from ancient Celtic traditions to modern celebrations. The evening will also feature a special rendition of a Halloween story from Irish legend!

Speakers include:

• Julie Le Blanc, Professor of Celtic Studies at the University of Ottawa

• Kelly Fitzgerald, Head of Irish Folklore and Ethnography at the School of Irish, Celtic Studies at University College Dublin

• Chantal Kobel, Bergen Fellow at the School of Celtic Studies at the Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies

We would love for you to join us for this virtual event “The Evolution of Halloween: Transatlantic Influences & Shaping Traditions”. This event will be live-streamed on our YouTube channel, but we encourage you to register at the following link to get the full event information:

Thursday 29th October, 7pm EST

Join the Embassy and our special guest speaker Dr. Julie LeBlanc for a fireside chat on the History of Halloween. Throughout this conversation, we will learn more about the ancient Celtic celebration of Samhain, and the calendar as used by the Celts. We’ll delve into why we light bonfires, carve pumpkins and go trick-or-treating on Halloween, and maybe even talk a little about the Otherworld! We’ll explore how Ireland’s Halloween traditions were initially exported to North America, and then re-imported to Ireland to become the celebration we know so well today.

To join the conversation, all you need to do is go to our YouTube channel at 7pm next Thursday:

We encourage you to ask questions, and share your Halloween experiences and memories.

About Dr. LeBlanc:

Julie M-A LeBlanc holds a PhD in folklore from Memorial University of Newfoundland and an MPhil in medieval history from Trinity College Dublin, has taken cultural management courses at the École des hautes études commerciales (HEC) in Montréal, and is an accredited strategic performance management specialist from Rutgers University, New Jersey. In addition to holding policy, research, and parliamentary affairs roles, she is currently a senior analyst within the Government of Canada, working on Indigenous and international human rights issues, and is a part-time professor of Celtic Studies at the University of Ottawa. She lives and works on traditional unceded Algonquin territory with her spouse, son, and daughter, and actively participates in multi-cultural community events and activities celebrating her mixed heritage.


Laura Finlay

Second Secretary | Embassy of Ireland | 130 Albert Street, Suite 1105, Ottawa, ON K1P 5G4, 

Hello All,

Kate Ferris is offering Irish Music for Ukulele lessons via Zoom. A portion of every registration goes to the club. Some knowledge of ukulele would be good but not required. So, if you'd like to support the club and learn some Irish tunes on Ukulele in the comfort of your own home please consider signing up! Oct 13 - Dec 1. See attached poster.   

We have a new Board of Directors for the 2020-2021 year!!!

                                                            President - Gerald Martin

                                                        Vice President - Joanne Small

Executive:  Brian Keely                                                           Directors at large:   Ryan Street

                     Denise Campbell                                                                                  Philippe Kwon

                    Tara Bailey                                                                                               Shirley Cuillinane

                    Tara Martin                                                                                               Ann-Marie Cuillinane

                    Anne Durcan                                                                                           Jan Ivey

                                                                                                                                       Lois Mallet

                                                                                                                                       Kieran Savage


We will still be open on Thursday and Friday nights. Trad sessions are still welcome on Thursdays, but without wind instruments and singing. Pub Grub will be available as well. The Friday jam sessions hosted by Geoff Erickson will also be postponed until further notice but we still encourage the membership to come out, have a bite to eat and enjoy a social distanced evening. See attached posters for more info.


As you have heard by now, after much consultation and consideration, this years Folklorama Festival has been cancelled. This decision was made not only by the Board of the Irish Association but we also received official notification from Folklorama on April 24, 2020. We all know this is the right decision in order to keep our Folklorama family safe and in good health.

We would like to thank all our extraordinary volunteers who dedicate so much time, ingenuity and energy to make the Irish Pavilion one of the top cultural experiences. Without those special folks who organize, build sets, showcase their Irish talents, plot and plan behind the scenes, attend meetings, chef up meals for 100’s, this is your year to take a breather and let your minds wander to making next years Pavilion “top notch”.

To the Volunteers who attend nightly during Folklorama week, “What would we do without you?” Thank you so much for your tireless dedication night after night with hopefully a bit of craic and food thrown in for good times! We hope to see you all back in the fold next year.

Folklorama 2021 will be held next year and for our Irish Pavilion it will be held August 1st-7th. Our venue site will remain the same and has been booked for 2021.

All our Best, Stay Safe, Social Distance, Wash Your Hands & Be Healthy

Bonnie Smeaton and Joe Savage,

Folklorama Coordinators

to September 2018 newsletter

St. Patrick's Gala

What a wonderful evening!  The club looked magical, great entertainment, food & lovely company.   

Thanks to the McDonnell School of Irish Dance, our traditional musicians, sean-nos singer, Traicy Robertson, grand march piper, Mark Paxton-Macrae, Honorable Cathy Cox, Councillor Brian Mayes & our lovely MC, Danielle Savage.

                                                                                                   What a night!!

Hugh G. Rice - A New Show

We have a new showing of a few of Hugh's paintings on the walls of the Irish Club main room.

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Link to "Irishassoc" Facebook page

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December Newsletter

New face  of the Irish Club!

Anyone needing space for business or private functions please keep the Irish Club facilities in mind. For more information on renting the banquet room, games room or the theatre please contact: [email protected]