Tag Archive for: P5

North Coast Feis 2015


The North Coast Feis was held on February 7th, 2015 at the IX Center in Cleveland, OH. This is the second year we have been at this feis at this level, and the 4th (I think) time we have been to the feis.

This year was very much a repeat of last year, and I was thinking about just pointing you to that last review 🙂  Instead, I will quote that, and point out what might be different. You can read the whole review here.


2014 Recap

The IX Center was OK as a feis venue. The PC/OC area was in the ballroom on the main level and was a good size room, but not adequate for the amount of people needing to be in there.

Camping was not sufficient and there was lots of camping in the viewer seating. Many areas were marked ‘no camping’ but they were full of campers, and that caused some flow issues for people trying to get from the front to the back of the room.

There were 3 stages labeled G – I, for PC and OC dancers. Stage sizes appeared to be about 20 x 24 and were small for the level of dancers performing on them. The stages were extremely slippery and there were lots of falls. The feis team mopped often but it did not help.

There was pretty good separation between the stages, but music could be heard from neighboring stages. It did not seem to impact the dancers much though.

Seating was not adequate for the viewers, but was probably all they could put in considering room size. The feis committee attempted to leave adequate room for people to move around (I refer back to the camping in the no camping area comment), but it really did not work out.

Parking was good, not all ‘close’, but plentiful. It was a bit pricey at $8. The weather was not great on that day but there was a large covered drop off area in front of the venue.

2015 Notes

Everything was pretty much the same, except:

  • The room was set up the same, but it did not feel as cramped as last year, and flow through seemed easier. They had moved the stages farther into the room, so there was less congestion toward the front of the hall.
  • Less falls this year but the stages were still slippery. The crew was ready with the broom and swept frequently.
  • I did not see any ‘No Camping’ signs, and one would think I would notice 😉 This made it a camping free-for-all. We had mapped out an area with coats, the dress bag and a zuca and someone camped in the middle… smh
  • Parking was $10 this year.

Side Bar: I really wish they could do something about the fumes in the lobby. I think they are from generators from the home show. It makes spending any time in the lobby nauseating.

Venue Score: 7


2014 Recap

With the Girl Child having 3 dances, and dancing on 3 separate stages, and because PC dancers have 3 judges per stage, none of whom rotated to another stage, I have no complaints on the judging.

I actually thought it was an excellent opportunity for the dancers, performing in front of 9 different judges for the feis. With 9 judges, comments were more well rounded than the typical 2 or 3 judges that you ‘might’ get at a grade level.

2015 Notes


Judge Score: 10


2014 Recap

Each stage had its own musician and I did not hear any complaints about music.

2015 Notes


Musician Score: 9.5


2014 Recap

Standard convention center food, hamburgers, cheesebugers, pretzels, pizza, wraps and salads, a coffee stand, various drink booths and beer. Food quality was OK but not worth the price. It was about what you expect for a convention center.

2015 Notes

We were actually done early and did not take advantage of concessions.

Food Score: NA


2014 Recap

George, the shoe guy, and Betsy, his daughter(who also responds to ‘George’s Daughter’ btw), the feis t-shirt table, wig ladies, a jewelry booth, an Irish wool and linens vendor, and the photographer. You can see all the vendors at the the feis site under Vendors.

2015 Notes

Another ditto. But, GEORGE was back after having been away from us for a while. Very happy to see you George!

Vendor Score: 7.5


2014 Recap

Results are different at Champ level, as some of you know. Results for all dances are completed, top 3 in each dance determined, and then the overall top half from the entire comp are determined. When they are ready, the dancers are gathered and awards presented.

I can understand where it would take time to do this, but timeliness was only one of the issues I felt the results had. It took approximately 1.5 to 2 hours from completion of TGCs last dance to presentation of her awards. I felt that was a little long, granted, I have never tallied a PC comp so that might be normal.

Results were presented in an area on the lower level that would have been fine if comps had been done one at a time. Thing is, they waited until somewhere around 5 comps were ready before presenting the awards.

Picture if you will, 5 comps of dancers with 10 – 20 dancers each, the parents and friends for all those dancers, and dance bags and zucas for some of them, crammed into an area not fit for that many people. It was difficult for dancers to get to the presentation area when called, and for spectators to see, and picture taking was next to impossible. Not planned well at all. I feel simply doing them one comp at a time would have helped tremendously.

2015 Notes

Huge improvement over last year!

  • Time from dance to awards dropped to somewhere between 60 and 90 minutes.
  • They moved the results up to the side of the venue lobby which is a huge area and added a podium. There was plenty of room for dancers and families.
  • CON: There were no chairs which would have been nice for some spectators, and, we were in the lobby where the fumes I mentioned above lingered 🙁

Results Score: 7.5

Feis Flow

2014 Recap

Flow was not bad considering the number of dancers, TGC had three dances on three separate stages, with about 20 dancers in the comp and she was finished in roughly 2.5 hours. Since this is only the second PC feis we have attended, I really do not have a standard to judge it by, but I thought that was pretty good.

2015 Notes

Ditto, right down to the number of dancers. Oh, I have a lot more than 2 PC feiseanna under my belt now.

Feis Flow Score: 8


Overall, I thought this was a better feis than last year and would put it in the 7.5 to 8 category.

What Say You?

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Gem City Feis 2014 PC/OC Review

gcfThe Gem City Feis was held on October 11th, 2014 at the Dayton Airport Expo Center in Vandalia, OH (basically attache to the Dayton International Airport, 15 minutes north of Dayton proper).

This is the third review I have done for Gem City, but I have been to the feis numerous times. If you would like to review the previous reviews, see this page.


As I have said in the past, the Expo Center is a great venue for a feis. Lots of space, nice size stages, nice separation between the stages, etc… My big peeve with this venue is the assigned camping area. If I was to refer to last years review, I said:

…last year I also said “probably could have taped off a bigger area for camping then they actually did, since the camping filled up and became difficult to navigate in and out of, but the annoyance was minor” and maybe I was a little too subtle. There is a ton of open area that could have been used for camping, but they taped off the same inadequate area this year and people were openly irritated. TAPE OFF A BIGGER CAMPING AREA IN 2014 PLEASE!

Well that went over well… not. Same area as the past few years, too small, too cramped, too frustrating. I won’t ask for a bigger area for 2015 since past attempts have gone SO well, but if someone from the committee reads this, I actually have an idea on how to expand the area.

Next peeve for this year was the temperature. The PC/OC end of the venue was very warm, while the opposite end was almost chilly because they had opened two of the large garage doors on that end of the building.

Lastly, stages. Stage size was great with PC/OC stages being 32 x 32 or bigger, but stage condition was horrible. I saw numerous falls, one resulting in the dancer being carried off the stage and transported by wheel chair a little later. The feis committee mopped at lunch, and occasionally between comps, but it did not seem to help much. Stage 2 actually stopped comps and moved one of the floor panels after numerous dancers fell on it, including the dancer in the wheel chair.


Typical for Champs, three judges, all attentive and two of the them on our stage were not familiar to me, which was a nice change. The other thing I realized which has not been the norm for TGCs results, was that all three judges scored her evenly. Typically (it seems), TGC will do great with two judges and meh with the third. I always wonder how she can score so differently, but this time that was not in question. All the judges saw the same dance 😉


I did not encounter any issues here. When the stage musician was playing, the other stages music was not a distraction. I did hear that the musician on Stage 2 was erratic with her tempos, but I did not encounter that, and TGC had no problems with the music.


Vendors seemed lighter than years past. Balinvilla was there (sans George, but he is doing well according to Betsy), the wig ladies, the feis t-shirt guys, and one other t-shirt guy. No real Irish nick-nacks, no Irish M&Ms… TGC was sad.


Convention Center food, pretzels, pizza, salad and sandwiches. They did have a nice fruit and cheese plate which I thought a nice option. Drinks were also available, coffee, water, soda and beer. I thought prices were high however, $2.50 for a bottle of water and over $5 for a pretzel and soda. The fruit and cheese will set you back $9. My advice, plan ahead. There are options fairly close if you are familiar with the area and easy to find if you are not, so brown bag it 😉


Gem City does a nice job with the PC/OC results and have an area set off in one corner to do the presentations. The presenter gives plenty of time for pics and makes an extra effort to make sure everyone is done taking pics before she had the dancers bow.

The awards are gems, and all placers get one. TGC got a Prizewinner gem last year and scored a placement gem this year and I think the PC/OC gems are bigger. A little sad that there were no sashes because trying to wear your gem could cause significant bodily harm due to their size.

If there were any negatives about the awards (other than no sashes) it would be the area proximity to Stage 1 made it hard to hear the award announcements when Stage 1 was going at it. Secondly, they had a bunch of lovely pumpkins lined up right in front of the podium and although it looked nice, I think it made it hard for the winners to get up on the podium. Maybe next year, add some space between the pumpkins and the podium.

It took about an hour for results to come out after TGCs comp was done dancing, which is a bit better than average.

Feis Flow

Feis Flow when things were going was not bad, and according to the stage estimator Mrs. WTF used, TGC was right on schedule. The ‘issue’ was the Treble Reels.

Scheduled to start during lunch, they were repeatedly delayed, and at one point they announced that it would be “AT LEAST 20 more minutes” before they started. If I had to guess, lunch on stage 2 started at 12ish and the Treble Reels didn’t go till closer to 130. If anyone has more exact info, please let me know.

Other than that, from my perspective, flow was pretty good.


Positives and negatives… venue was great, stages, not so much, awards were nice, flow had its hiccups, vendors were limited, food was pricey. I would place this around 6 or 7, your mileage may vary.

What did you think?

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Bluegrass Feis PC/OC Levels Review 2104

bgFeisThe Bluegrass Feis was held at the Lexington Convention Center on Sunday, May 11th, 2014. This is the second time we have done this feis and you can see my previous review here.

As has become my habit of late, this review focuses on the PC/OC levels. If you have comments on the grades levels, please add them at the bottom of the review or contact me and I can add them for you.


Second time at this venue, and after having read last years review, apparently I am not as big a fan this year.

Stages & Seating

As it was last year the venue had 7 stages, with 1 – 6 actually being 3 big stages divided down the middle by tape, making two roughly 16 x 24 foot stages that were literally connected. This made for cramped standing for bigger comps and cramped dancing for everyone except the more beginner dancers.

Stages 1 – 6 were for grades, and stage 7 was for PC/OC. Stage 7 was about 24 x 32 but was not divided as the others were. Later in the day, stage 5/6 became just stage 6 and had some PC/OC comps on it. Stage 7 did have some maintenance issues shortly after we got there and dancing came to a halt while they fixed what I was told was a loose screw.

Seating wasn’t bad, but the people who were so courteous the prior day in Cincinnati decided to leave it in Cincinnati. You can see there were a few complaints (here and here) and seating due to these people was not adequate.

Camping & Access

Camping was very cramped, a lot worse than I remember last year. I wonder if the number of competitors was increased. Very tight camping area, little room to move and very crowded walkways made the whole thing seem claustrophobic. There were areas on the far end of the venue that could have been used better. I think I made the same observation last year.

Awards & Results Areas

Grade level awards were posted at one end of the venue on a large wall, with awards fairly close.

Champ level dancers had their podium stuck in between stages 7 and 5/6. No seating and lots of noise from the stages on both sides.


Free and plentiful, but could involve some walking.

Venue Score: 7.5


Judges seemed very attentive again today and rated TGC about the same as the previous day (1 judge was the same both days). So maybe it is TGCs skills evening out 🙂 I also thought the judges did an excellent job of keeping things moving.

Judge Score: 10


I really cant speak to the music for the entire venue, and to be honest, since we stayed on stage 7, I am not even sure if the merged stages (1 – 6) had there own musicians (6 different) or each merge shared 1 (3 different). Can somebody help me out with that one?  The musician on 7 seemed fine and I heard no complaints.

Musician Score: 8.5


Only saw a Italian Ice/gelato stand inside the venue, but a short walk in the same building brought you to a food court with a variety of options, all reasonably priced. There were also options close to the venue.

Food Score: 8.5


Feis vendors were pretty much a repeat of who was in Cincinnati at Queen City. Here is the list, but alas, still no Irish M&Ms.  🙁

Vendor Score: 7.5


Results for champs, as mentioned above was jammed in between two stages. No seats and music competing with the announcer from both sides. It took about an hour and 15 minutes from the end of TGCs comp to announcements, so slightly worse than QC.

Results Score: 7

Feis Flow

From start to finish, both PC dances and got awards in about 2 hours. That part was good. I also noticed that by 130ish, it seemed like things in the entire venue were starting to wrap up and at least one stage was being torn down.

Feis Flow: 9


Two part scoring with a Feis Score consisting of Judging, Music, Results and Flow, and then the overall consisting of everything.

Feis Score: 8.625

And the WTF Rating is 8.3… Not the highest for the weekend, but it had its high points. Good job Bluegrass!

Were You There, What Did YOU Think?

Polling software still on sebaticle. Would love to hear what you thought, so can you do it in the comments below? It can be anonymous  🙂  Thanks!

Wisconsin Spring Feis PC/OC Review 2014

logocolorThe Wisconsin Spring Feis was held on May 3rd, 2014 at the Wisconsin Center in Milwaukee, WI.

Editor’s Note:

Back to back feiseanna were held at the Wisconsin Center this weekend so the summaries and scores for Venue, Food and Vendors will be the same for both days and only listed in this review.

This review is for the PC/OC portion of the feis. Sorry, it got to hard to monitor stages and results for grades and pay attention to what was going on with TGC and her schedule. If you have comments for the Grades portion of the feis, please contact me and I can share them in a separate post, thanks!


This is the first (and second) feis I have attended at this venue and I am on the fence about the venue itself. It is huge and has lots of potential, but I do not think the space was adequately used.

There were 10 stages with stages 1 – 3 set up for PC & OC and 4 – 10 for grades. The huge hall was divided in half by a partition with the PC/OC stages butt up against it. Grade level stages 4 – 8 were in the same half of the hall, separated from the PC/OC stages by a large camping area, and an attempt at walkways between the stages and the camping area. Stages 9 and 10 were in the other half of the hall kind of off in the corners.

The other half of the hall had the results for grades set up on the partition that divided the hall, basically in back of stages 1 – 3. It also held the vendors (about 8 of them), a small smoothie cart and some tables for dining. It also held the awards area for PC/OC which was a nice size and accomodated that purpose better than any other feis I have seen while TGC has been at this level.

The PC/OC stages were very large, about 28 x 32 and covered with the non-slip material which made for a nice dance area. TGC danced on two different stages during the two days and had no problems, and I saw no slips or falls on either of them. TGC did say that stage 3 had either a loose board or high spot she noticed when she was practicing before the feis started, but that was the only complaint I heard.

Afraid that even though I watched a dance or two by friends on the grades stages, I did not notice to much about them.

Camping in the ‘designated area’ was not adequate for the number of people there Saturday. There was plenty of area in the other half of the hall but it appeared that rather than take a 60 second walk, piling on top of each other was preferred.

Camping in the viewer chairs, was as always, an issue. People ‘tried’ not to do that and piled there stuff behind the last row of chairs which impeded pedestrian flow. Add to that the people standing behind that gear, and the people standing behind them, trying to see the dancers, because they could not sit down for all the gear piled onto the chairs, and the walkway that was supposed to be about 10 feet wide quickly dwindled down to about 5 feet. Add in overflow camping from the other side of the path, well, you get where I am going with this.

The concessions were at either end of the hall and there was only one bathroom I saw in the hall, but more were located in the hallway outside, so not to bad.

I heard parking was $15 but to be honest, since we were in a hotel attached to the venue, we used hotel parking when we got there Friday night and did not get in the car till it was time to go home on Sunday.

If I had run the feis, I would have moved all the vendors up to the front of the hall between the main doors and the stages, there was probably 40 feet of free space that would probably would have fit them all. Then, I would use the other half of the hall to space out the stages more and add more camping, but that is just me 😉

Venue Score: 7  (but it has the potential to be 9 or 10. NOTE: Sunday seemed less crowded and more pleasant then Saturday)


PC/OC  always has 3 judges. They were attentive on our stage and took only one break that I saw. I realized with this back to back, that although there is always similarities in PC/OC judging, having 3 judges does not automatically mean a high score. Saturday was good, Sunday, less so.

Judge Score: 9.5


Each stage had their own musician and according to TGC, the music was fine on the stage, but in the viewing seats it was really hard to distinguish between which stage was playing what. I also saw one dancer jump the gun which I believe was due to having a hard time hearing the music.

Musician Score: 7


We only caught the lunch menu and it was much what you would expect for a ‘convention center’ venue. Hamburgers, hot dogs, fries, pizza. We had two cheeseburgers,  and one fries and it was $17, which seemed high, but the burgers were good and pretty big. There were lots of options if you wanted to venture outside the venue, but not many fast food establishments.

Food Score: 7


The shoe guy, NOT GEORGE, who also sold t’s and sweatshirts, some nice knit wear, Irish nic nacs, jewelry, the wig ladies, Guinness wear, a ribbon fob booth but not Made by Mare, the photographer and the feis tshirt booth. Plus, we were able to find Irish M&Ms (Smarties) and I found Lucozade, which I first had in my Grandmothers store in Ireland when I was a kid (queue the reminiscing music). All in all, a nice vendor turnout.

Vendor Score: 9


I am still getting used to how these PC/OC results work and I don’t know if I have determined the average yet, but I didn’t think these were hateful. It was about 90 minutes from the end of TGCs comp and the results and she was in a huge comp.

Awards were given in a large area off in an isolated part of the hall, so there was plenty of room to gather and the noise from the viewers was not a distraction to the other competitors.

Results Score: 9

Feis Flow

Gotta say that the flow of the feis was pretty good for the number of competitors. TGCs comp was done with both dances in about an hour and the comp was the biggest comp for a standard feis I have seen.

Casual observation of other stages and it seems like the flow on those was smooth and steady as well.

Feis Flow: 9


Two part scoring with a Feis Score consisting of Judging, Music, Results and Flow, and then the overall consisting of everything.

Feis Score: 8.625 – Music brought this down a bit but the Results and Flow were pretty good considering the sheer numbers there.

And the WTF Rating is 8.36… not to bad and this is a feis we would definitely consider going back to.

What Say You?

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Buckeye State Feis, PC/OC Review 2014

FeisLogo_nodateThe 6th Annual Buckeye State Feis was held on April 5th, 2014 at the The Franklin County Veterans Memorial in Columbus, Ohio.

NOTE: This is for the PC/OC stages and results. If you have comments for the Grades stages and results for the feis, please contact me and I can share them in a separate post, thanks!

Venue – This is the fifth feis I have attended at Vets Memorial. Buckeye has been held here every year since its inauguration,  and we have been to all except one due to a dance school change.

I like the venue. It is big and there is plenty of room for the stages to be spread and still be good size. There were six stages, but I was focused on Stage 1, the OC stage (but some PC comps ended up dancing on it), and Stage 2, the PC stage. Stage 1 was 40 x 32, and stage 2 was 32 x 32, which, if I remember correctly, are the biggest stages I have seen at a ‘normal’ feis.

I did see some a few slips and falls, but the feis volunteers were very proactive trying to stay on top of stage maintenance. Dancing came to a stop on one of the stages so they could mop it after one fall, and they kept a wet towel by the side of the stage so dancers could wet their shoes before dancing.

Seating was plentiful for the most part. There were some feis shaming incidents, but in general we were always able to sit to watch TGC dance.

Results for champs were held over on one side of the hall, away from most stages which was good, but, it was too close to the concessions. During one awards ceremony, they had three large comps, along with the parents and other observers waiting to hear results, and it was so packed that some dancers had a hard time getting to the front if they were called.

Camping, I thought, was pretty good, with lots of areas set aside to store gear. This made the feis shaming incidents more obnoxious because there was really no need to take up seats with gear.

The concessions (except the actual built-in stands) were grouped together on one side of the hall, and vendors were setup together towards the front of the hall. Very convenient, but see the note about Champ results above.

Parking was good and all located right next to the hall but may have involved a bit of a walk depending on when you arrived. There was a drop zone for dancers and gear. Parking was $7.

Venue Score: 8.5 

Judges – The PC/OC  stages, as always, had 3 judges each. They were attentive, kept things moving, and took very few breaks.

Judge Score: 9.5

Music – Lots of space between the stages, with each stage having their own musician. No musical confusion, and although I could hear other musicians from where I was sitting between dances, I could not hear them when our stage musician played.

Musician Score: 9.5

Food – They had the normal convention center fare in the halls concession stands, but they also brought in outside vendors, a gyro stand, a Hawaiian shaved ice truck, a specialty coffee truck, and some others. Prices were OK, but I thought drink prices were a bit gougy, and you weren’t ‘supposed’ to bring in coolers.

Food Score: 8

Vendors – George the shoe guy, with his daughter who follows WTF on FB… Hi George’s daughter!  🙂   A tie-dye t-shirt guy, the typical wig and feis jewelry booths, and one other small jewelry table. No real Irish swag, and TGC was disappointed that no one had any Irish candies 🙁  You can see a list of the vendors on the feis page.

Vendor Score: 7.5

Results – We got there kind of early (as usual) so there was a few hours between when we arrived and when TGC danced. We watched other champ comps, and it seemed that results for them were very slow. After TGC danced however, it was only about an hour before her results were announced, which, while not the best we have seen at this level, was better than I expected after monitoring for the previous few hours.

Results Score: 8.5

Feis Flow – Feis flow was pretty good. From the start of TGC’s first dance to the presentation of her comps results was between 2 and 2 and a half hours. The feis peoples were on top of what was going on on the stages, and rearranged stage use on the champ stages to keep things moving. Well done.

Feis Flow Score: 10


Two part scoring with a Feis Score consisting of Judging, Music, Results and Flow, and then the overall consisting of everything.

Feis Score: 9.375 – PC/OC is always helped by judges and music, but the Results and especially Flow were pretty good.

And the WTF Rating is 8.79… Good job Buckeye!

What Say You?

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