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Irish on Ionia flows into downtown

March 14, 2016
| By Pat Evans |
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Irish on Ionia parties toward zero waste
The annual Irish on Ionia street party in downtown Grand Rapids draws about 20,000 people. Photo via

A restaurant and bar group is producing its annual Irish celebration downtown this weekend.

The 6th-annual Irish on Ionia begins at 7 a.m. on Saturday in Grand Rapids at The Waldron Public House, at 58 Ionia Ave. SW, which hosts the event for the first time.

The first 200 people through the gates will receive a free “kegs & eggs brunch buffet” and a 22-ounce Irish on Ionia mug.

This year, HopCat and Portage-based Latitude 42 Brewing paired up to brew Bangin’ in the Mash Irish Stout, which will be available for purchase in cans.

The event will feature a mix of DJs and Irish dancing, as well as Irish folk and rock acts, such as the Saltbound and The Waxies.

BarFly Ventures, the parent company of Waldron, hosted the event for the previous five years with the predecessor to Waldron, McFadden’s.

The street party is produced by the company's events and catering company, BarFly Events.

“This year’s entertainment is better than ever,” said Shane Philipsen, planner for Irish on Ionia.

Philipsen added that The Waldron “brings a new element” to the event, with “upgraded food, beer and a casual, but more upscale atmosphere that lends itself to a great party.”

Tickets are $15 if purchased ahead of time and $20 at the gates, and there are VIP tickets available. 

Tickets can be purchased online.

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