NORWICH – A “Halfway to St. Patty’s Day” celebration is set for Friday night, with two local businesses and a local band joining forces for what’s expected to be a fun-filled evening.
“Halfway to St. Patty’s Day celebrations take place all around this country and around the world,” said Frank Revoir, member of The Ryan Clan who will be performing Friday.
The music for the Halfway to St. Patty’s Day celebration kicks off at The Blarney Stone Pub at 9 p.m. and there is no cover. Food from 28 South Broad will be served from 5-10 p.m.
The Ryan Clan has been playing – sometimes separately and sometimes together – since the members were children.
The band is composed of brothers Tim, Pat, Tom and Dan Ryan, cousin Frank Revoir, and brother-in-law Bill Scranton, who is married to the Ryans’ sister.
“We started playing Irish music in the early 1980's. We were not the Ryan Clan until approximately 7 years ago,” said Revoir. “Prior to that for several years, we performed under other names such as The Sons of Ireland and The Wild Colonial Boys and our good friend, Mike Carnrike was the band leader and lead singer. However, he decided to venture out in a different direction and he now performs Irish music with his daughter, Patti Carnrike and their group, Glenravel, is well known throughout the area.”
Per the group’s website (theryanclanband.com), “The six member band is known throughout the southern tier as an upbeat, high energy, foot stomping, hand clapping, family band, performing authentic Irish music. Whether young or old, the Ryan Clan motivates their audience into full fledged Irish delirium. If you aren't Irish, you'll wish you were by the end of their performance.”
“We're an Irish pub so it's fun to count down the days until our favorite holiday, said Sarah Woods of The Blarney Stone Pub. “The Ryan Clan are just amazing and always have the crowd dancing a jig.”
“We engage our audience. We talk with them. Tell jokes. And of course, our songs require the audience to sing refrains, clap, yell, etc.,” said Revoir.
Eric Guinn, owner of 28 South Broad, said that his business is offering house made corned beef sandwiches on heidelberg rye, with swiss cheese and cabbage, and a side for $9. “And, of course, my smiling face will be there,” said Guinn.
“We continue to learn new material,” said Revoir. “We generally perform a significant number of gigs in March and September each year, as that is when everyone wants to hear Irish music. During the rest of the year, we tend to perform at private events. We have begun to venture into the Irish Festival scene as well. However, we will never stop performing to our base fans in Norwich and Sherburne where it all began. We are family entertainment. We play many functions at schools and other community centers, that are alcohol-free events and fun for all ages, with many organizations utilizing our services for their fund raising events (i.e. Holy Family School; Catholic Charities).”
With regard to two local businesses joining forces to bring entertainment and food together for the celebration, Guinn said, “I feel that joint efforts like ‘Halfway to St. Patrick's Day’ are helping this community survive and this will become a business standard in order for downtown to thrive. Folks should come out to support downtown and celebrate a fantastic day twice a year.”
Woods said, “What's really nice is that our neighbors at 28 South Broad are getting into the spirit offering fresh corned beef sandwiches to the pub crowd. Local music and food in a hometown pub, we'll raise a pint of Guinness to that!”
“Our community is lucky to have a number of events that bring us together,” said Brenna McCormick. “The local businesses working together to provide a new tradition is another reason for us to be proud to call Norwich home.”