Attending Your First Oireachtas

orockwhatWell, aren’t you big stuff? Attending your first Oireachtas is very special indeed. Whether you are attending to watch the solos, teams, traditional set, or some combination thereof, let me be the first to congratulate you. Take a moment and enjoy the accomplishment of being invited to attend your first Oireachtas.

Let me assure you, it is even more important for the dancer you are going to watch.

Oireachtas, in short, is a regional competition. It has been called, by wittier writers than myself, a big ole honkin’ feis. But, I would disagree. At a feis, there are baking, art, music, vocal, dance, and special competitions. The Oireachtas would be better classified as a big ole honkin’ feile. See also What The Feis Dance Terms. At the Oireachtas, there are only dance competitions. The majority of the competitions are solos. This is followed by 4 hand and 8 hand teams, figure choreography, and dance drama. There are also traditional set competitions at some regional Oireachtas.

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Feis ATL 2014 Review

feisATLFeis ATL was held November 14th and 15th of 2014, at the Sheraton Hotel in downtown Atlanta, Georgia. This was a Drake feis, which means fun, fabulous, chaotic, and crowded. The feis offered competitions in musical instruments, vocals, Celtic art work, baking, traditional and non traditional sets, treble reels, and a Dancer of the Day award, in addition to the regular feis competition schedule.

In the tradition of fun and fabulous, this feis offered some unexpected surprises. Friday night, there was a casual Irish music session in the registration hall. On Saturday, the FROZEN princesses made appearances and lead a pre awards show sing-a-long. On Saturday night, they held a post feis luau at the hotel pool for feis attendees.

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Pack Up Your Feisin’ In Your Old Who Hut… wait, what!?

The other day, my husband said, “You know, when we move, we won’t need any boxes…we can just pack everything in your tote bags.” I looked around the room and had to agree. I could easily start my own bag kiosk at the mall. People are constantly telling me that I have a bag problem. My response is always that I can quit bags anytime.

Dr-Seuss-cat-in-the-hatAfter giving this some additional thought, I realized that I don’t have a BAG problem, I have a FEIS problem.  There is just too much stuff I need to bring to be the ‘Perfectly Prepared Feis Mom’ (PPFM) and I can’t get a system down that doesn’t involve looking like the Beverly Hillbillies. At a recent Feis, you could buy a tee shirt with an image of a Feis Mom lugging five suitcases and four tote bags. I honestly thought that someone had snapped a photo of me and shaded it in (with a smaller butt).

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Chicago Autumn Feis 2014 Review

chicago_autumn_feis_2014The 12th Annual Chicago Autumn Feis was held on Sunday, November 9, 2014 at North Central College in Naperville IL .

I can’t speak to PC/OC level, nor did our school have any at that level here due to Oirachtas practice.

Venue

Aside from streets being blocked due to a marathon, it was easy enough to get to the field house at North Central College. The parking was limited, but there was a shuttle that was much appreciated to take us from the lot to the field house. Unfortunately, the shuttle stopped transporting before my Prizewinner dancer finished dancing. The facility was clean initially, and restrooms seemed to be kept up. I didn’t see any cleaning of the floors throughout the day, possibly because there was no floor space open because of the crowding. Camping was supposed to be done on the balcony level, but few people did this and it was not enforced. The competition area was very crowded and it was difficult to move from one stage to another to watch other dancers on their respective stages. There was ample seating set up, however, dancers had strewn their belongings in seats and across bleachers, taking away from the available seating. Maybe not the best venue for 1,200 dancers and their families.

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Shamrock Soaps Giveaway Winners Announced!

1ed128b7fc8fa39c72b9bf9e1b900768Congratulations to the winners of the Shamrock Soaps Giveaway! They are (names as listed in the original comments):

  • DancerMom
  • Bonnie
  • Michelle

Heather from Shamrock Soaps has your email and will be in touch on how to collect your prize.

Congratulations Winners!

Missed the contest? Be sure to check out Shamrock Soaps! They have a line of  body products locally made in Wisconsin. With a line for Irish Dancers, and products for their support teams (aka us), I think you will find something you like, I did!. You can find the site at Shamrock Soaps and can purchase on line at Shamrock Soaps on Etsy. They are also on Facebook at Shamrock Soaps.

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Cincinnati Feis 2014 Grades, A Second Opinion…

Kelly took the time to capture her insight in a review, and even though we already had a Cinci Grades review, I feel all inputs could provide something valuable to our readers, so without further ado, The Cinci Feis, A Second Opinion.

Cincinnati-Feis-LogoFullFeis Info

The 31st annual Cincinnati Feis was held at the Northern Kentucky Convention Center on November 2nd, 2014.  This feis was broken up on 2 floors with food, most vendors, camping, and champ comps on the first floor.  The 2nd floor hosted grade comps, grades results/ awards, tshirts, used dresses, and a really sweet little spot for selfies and photos.

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Feis Culkin 2014 Grades Review

Corabelle has done a few grades reviews for us and I am sad to report she will no longer be doing them, BECAUSE HER GC MOVED UP TO PC!!! CONGRATS CC’s GC! Looking forward to your PC reviews!

logo_triskele_gobo_400x400Feis Culkin was held on Sunday, November 2, 2014 beginning at 8:30 am. The feis is held at the Maryland Discovery Sports Center in Boyds, Maryland. Boyds is located about 30 miles northwest of DC. For those traveling and in need of a hotel, towns to stay in include Germantown, Gaithersburg and Fredericksburg. This year the feis fell the day after Daylight Savings Time ended and I think the dancers and parents were happy for an extra hour of sleep (or getting ready!) before a feis

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