The informant is Catholic, and of Irish descent. They agreed to meet up with me, and share pieces of folklore for this project.
What is Irish Fest?
“Um, so…I- In Milwaukee, Wisconsin where I’m from, they have this thing called Irish Fest every year, and- because there was a really big population of Irish people in Milwaukee, and Irish fest is the biggest festival for Irishness outside of Ireland and- Like a lot of people from Ireland actually come to Milwaukee for it because it’s, um like a bunch of Irish music and stuff is played there, and they don’t gather as much in like Ireland. Like it’s the biggest music festival for Irish music. Um, so me and my family, every year we go to Irish Fest and, um well- I don’t know. So there’s like Irish dancing and, um there’s Irish music and we always eat reubens, which are like an Irish thing. It’s like corned beef.
Do you usually eat reubens outside of Irish Fest?
“I… We do, but not as much. We usually eat it on Saint Patrick’s Day, and… and Irish Fest.”
This ties into when the class talked about how heritage is inherited, something one is born into. Despite how the informant does not live in Ireland, they and other Irish descendants seem to feel drawn to the festival as a way to feel connected to their heritage. I also found it interesting how people from Ireland fly in for the festival as well.