The Celtic Celebration on Saturday at the Marion Community Center was such a rousing success that organizers have already scheduled a return event for 2013.
Pam Bowers and Jeanice Thomas organized the event on behalf of Marion Advancement Campaign, Marion PRIDE, and Marion Main Street Merchants. The event was the brainchild of Knocknasheega Celtic Band, who performed at an earlier Art and Music Stroll and really enjoyed Marion, Bowers said.
The group struggles to find enough venues to play in Wichita, so they wanted to return to Marion for an event, and suggested having a dinner and entertainment event.
“We had the facility, and they had the talent,” Bowers said.
The event sold 160 advance tickets, and 20 people from Wichita arrived without reservations. Including the performers, volunteers served probably about 200 meals, Bowers said. Another 30 people enjoyed the entertainment by Knocknasheega Celtic Band, Wichita Caledonian Pipes and Drums, and Cory Academy of Irish Dancing.
“I’ve been asking people, and they have a hard time picking a favorite,” Bowers said.
After the main performances were over, some of the entertainers stayed until 11:30 p.m. to play for approximately 30 people who stayed behind to listen, she said.
Proceeds from the event will be divided among the groups that made it possible, with a portion of the funds set aside to help with future events that are a net expense, Bowers said.
Organizers learned some lessons from this event that they will apply when they have another Celtic Celebration on March 2, 2013. Bowers said they plan to move some of the tables to the basement so it isn’t so crowded. The guests that eat downstairs will be able to watch the entertainment after dinner from the balcony, which Bowers said offers an excellent view.