Iowa Irish Fest is located in the Lincoln Park area of Downtown Waterloo and takes place during the first full weekend in August. The weekend will kick off on Friday, August 4th at 4:00 PM with a ceremonial procession that will open the festival and run all the way through Sunday, August 6th.

This festival is always a big draw to Downtown Waterloo and is one of the biggest celebrations of Irish culture in the Midwest.

We're helping you make sure you make the most of the weekend with a full-on rundown of everything you'll need to know.

For more information make sure to go to Iowa Irish Fest's website here. Before you get all the info on the event, be sure to enter to win a family four-pack of tickets to Iowa Irish Fest!

Entertainment Schedule

Friday August 4th, 2023

Trinity Irish Dancers ~ 4:30 PM-5:00 PM @ Nagle/KWWL Stage

Shane Hennessy ~ 5:30 PM-6:30 PM ~@ Nagle/KWWL Stage

The Black Donnellys ~ 6:00PM-7:00 PM @ Trad Stage

Colm & Laura Keegan Band ~ 7:00 PM-8:00 PM @ Nagle/KWWL Stage

The Dublin City Ramblers ~ 7:00 PM-8:00 PM @ LSB Stage

Screaming Orphans ~ 8:30 PM-9:45 PM @ LSB Stage

Doolin ~ 10:30 PM - 12:00 AM @ LSB Stage


Scythian ~ 10:30 PM-12:00 AM @ Nagle/KWWL Stage 

Iowa Irish Fest
Iowa Irish Fest

The band is made up of a bunch of college friends who discovered their shared love of Celtic music more than a decade ago. Scythian headlines various music festivals throughout the nation year round.

They are a festival favorite every year (and one of my favorite acts at Iowa Irish Fest).

Saturday August 5th, 2023

Saturday's festivities kicks off with the High Nelly Bike Rally which will start at 4th Street & Sycamore Street at 9:00 AM. Registration for the event begins at 8:00 AM. If you get to Iowa Irish Fest, you'll probably be able to snag yourself a Bloody Mary or an Irish coffee right outside of Jameson's.

In the Cultural Village starting at around 5:00 PM and wrapping up at 6:00 PM, you can check out a Blacksmith Competition or "Forge Off" that will also include a knife handling demonstration.

Here are the musical/entertainment acts for Saturday night of the festival:

Hannah Flowers ~ 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM @ Trad Stage

Chicago Police Pipes & Drums ~ 11:30 AM - 12:15 PM @ Nagle/KWWL Stage

The Dublin City Ramblers ~ 12:15 PM - 1:15 PM @ Nagle/KWWL Stage

Shane Hennessy ~ 2:00 PM - 3:00 PM @ LSB Stage

Aoife Scott ~ 3:00 PM - 4:00 PM @ Nagle/KWWL Stage

Ian Gould ~ 3:30 PM - 4:30 PM @ Trad Stage

Doolin ~ 4:30 PM - 5:30 PM @ Nagle/KWWL Stage

The Black Donnellys ~ 5:00 PM - 6:15 PM @ LSB Stage

Screaming Orphans ~ 6:15 PM - 7:15 PM @ Nagle/KWWL Stage

Kellen O'Cullom ~ 6:00 PM - 7:15 PM @ Trad Stage

Tallymoore ~ 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM Jameson's Stage

Sorcha ~ 6:30 PM - 7:30 PM @ Dillon’s Pub Stage

Seo Linn ~ 6:45 PM - 8:00 PM @ LSB Stage

Gadan ~ 7:45 PM - 9:00 PM @ Trad Stage

Crowfoot Rakes ~ 8:00 PM - 9:00 PM @ Dillon’s Pub Stage

Scythian ~ 8:00 PM - 9:15 PM @ Nagle/KWWL Stage

Wyld Nept ~ 9:00 PM - 12:00 AM @ Jameson's Stage

Colm & Laura Keegan Band ~ 8:30 9PM - 9:45 PM @ LSB Stage

Blame Not the Bard ~ 9:30 PM - 11:00 PM @ Trad Stage

Multi-Band "Mix Tape" Event ~ 10:00 PM - 11:30 PM @ Nagle/KWWL Stage

Tallymoore ~ 10:30 PM - 12:00 AM @ LSB Stage

Sunday August 6th, 2023

The final day of Iowa Irish Fest will begin with Whiskey, Mimosas, & Yoga @ the COR Building at 9:00 AM. Many people will flock to downtown Waterloo for a Catholic Mass at the Nagle/KWWL Stage that will begin at 10:00 AM.

Some other exciting events going on during the festival's final day including Sheep Herding at Lincoln Park. Here is the full rundown of entertainment for the day:

Exorna ~ 9:00 AM - 11:00 AM @ Jameson's Stage

Chicago Police Department Pipes & Drums ~ 11:00 AM - 11:30 AM @ Hero's Stage

McNulty School of Irish Dance, Dubuque ~ 11:00 AM - 11:30 AM @ LSB Stage

Hannah Flowers ~ 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM @ Trad Stage

Trinity Irish Dancers (with Dan Vaughn) ~ 11:30 AM - 12:00 PM @ Nagle/KWWL Stage

Shane Hennessy ~ 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM @ LSB Stage

Tallymoore ~ 12:00 PM - 2:00 PM @ Jameson's Stage

Blame Not the Bard ~ 12:30 PM - 1:30 PM @ Trad Stage

The Celtic Tenors ~ 12:30 PM - 2:00 PM @ Nagle/KWWL Stage

Kellen O'Cullom ~ 1:30 PM - 2:30 PM @ Dillon’s Pub Stage

Aoife Scott ~ 1:30 PM - 2:30 PM @ LSB Stage

Chicago Police Department Pipes & Drums ~ 2:00 PM - 2:30 PM @ Hero's Stage

Screaming Orphans ~ 2:30 PM - 3:45 PM @ Nagle/KWWL Stage

Colm Keegan Band ~ 3:00 PM - 4:00 PM @ LSB Stage

Ian Gould ~ 3:00 PM - 4:00 PM @ Dillon's Pub Stage

Kellen O'Cullom ~ 3:00 PM - 4:00 PM @ Jameson's Stage

Doolin ~ 4:30 PM - 5:30 PM @ LSB Stage

Gadan ~ 4:30 PM - 5:30 PM @ Trad Stage




Gaelic Storm ~ 4:30 PM - 6:00 PM @ Nagle/KWWL Stage 

When you're not jamming out to some of these amazing acts throughout the weekend, make sure to check out some of the classes that you can take.

Iowa Irish Fest Classes

Whoever said you can't learn while having a bit of fun clearly has never been to Iowa Irish Fest. The event will play host to multiple booze related classes.

The Guiness Experience

These sessions are all led by a National Guinness Brand Ambassador, named Jimmy Callahan. His classes are more like seminars in the history of Guiness brewing and the beer making process.

What You'll Get From the Class

All attendants will learn how to pour the perfect pint, sample five Guiness Family beers, and take home a Guinness pint glass.

When: Saturday, August 5th 2023: 

12 PM, 2 PM, 4 PM, and 6 PM

The class size is capped off at 40 people and all attendants must be over 21 (obviously).

Cost per session: $30

Where: Lower level of Screaming Eagle

World of Whiskey Master Class

With this class you'll be able to "taste your way around the World with 5 different whiskey profiles." Attendants will be able to sample spirits like Minor Case Sherry Cask Finished Straight Rye Whiskey Sexton Single Malt Irish Whiskey.

What You'll Get From the Class

All of these spirited students will be able to try these five different whiskeys, and a Whiskey Master t-shirt.

When: Friday, August 4th at 1:45 PM and Saturday, August 5th at 5 PM

Cost per session: $40

Where: Elks Club Ballroom

Irish Whiskey Master Class

These classes will focus solely on Irish whiskey and have attendants sample five different Irish whiskeys to see what makes them unique.

What You'll Get From the Class

Students will be able to sample five different Irish whiskeys and receive a Whiskey Master t-shirt.

When: Friday, August 4th at 7 PM, Saturday, August 5th at 10 AM, and Saturday, August 5th at 3:15 PM

Cost per session: $40

Where: Elks Club Ballroom

Irish Whiskey Master Class – “Spot On” Whiskey

What You'll Get From the Class

Attendants will sample Green Spot, Green Spot Chateau Montelena Finished in Zinfandel Wine Casks, Yellow Spot, Red Spot, and Blue Spot. In addition, you will receive a t-shirt.

When: Saturday, August 5th at 4:45- 5:30 PM

Cost per session: $50

Where: Elks Club Ballroom

Cedar Ridge Master Class with Head Distiller, Murphy Quint

What You'll Get From the Class

You'll be able to sample different Cedar Ridge whiskeys and receive a complementary Iowa Irish Fest branded whiskey glass.

When: Friday, August 4th at 5 PM

Cost per session: $40

Where: Elks Club Ballroom

Keeper’s Heart Irish-American Whiskey Master Class with Distiller, Kate Douglas

What You'll Get From the Class

Participants will be sampling drinks from this Minnesota distilling company and are set to receive a Iowa Irish Fest branded Tuath Whiskey glass.

When: Saturday, August 5th at 6 PM

Where: Elks Club Ballroom

Purchase tickets to any of these sessions only until Wednesday, August 2nd. All attendants to these classes must be 21+.

Another reminder, these specific event costs do not cover the cost of your admission into the festival.

Stay up to date with the latest events in Eastern Iowa by downloading the free station app from your app store. Also, make sure that you are following the station across all social media platforms so you can stay in the know about events coming to the Cedar Valley.

Pershing Square Restaurant in NYC

One restaurant in New York City has an interesting connection to one Iowa celebrity. This spot was a filming location for an Iowa adjacent actress.

Fenelon Street Elevator

The steepest and shortest railway is in Dubuque.

More From K92.3