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Desert Lass 
Posted: 27-Mar-2007, 06:06 PM
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Group: Celtic Nation
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Joined: 17-Aug-2006


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On Saturday, June 16, at 5pm, the Irish Cultural Center, 1106 North Central in downtown Phoenix, will open its gates for Arizona’s First Annual Bloomin’ Beerfest, a unique event that combines the fine old Irish tradition of Bloomsday with the fine new American tradition of a beer tasting. Co-sponsored by the Irish Cultural and Learning Foundation and the Arizona Craft Brewers Guild, the event will mark the 103rd anniversary of Leopold Bloom's fictional journey through the streets of Dublin in the James Joyce novel novel, Ulysses. Bloom’s journey included stops at more than a few pubs. At Arizona’s first Bloomin’ Beerfest the available brews will originate with twenty of Arizona’s top craft brewers, rather than with the brewers of Irish beers and ales.

Bloomsday is celebrated in Ireland and throughout the world by Irish people and Joyce fans alike. The name “Bloomsday” derives from Leopold Bloom, the novel’s protagonist; June 16 was the day in 1904 on which the events in Ulysses were set. In the novel, Bloom travels around Dublin meeting fascinating characters and making full use of the city’s pubs. To literary and Joyce lovers around the world, Bloom represents both the Everyman of modern society and the heroic Ulysses of Homer’s great epic poem, The Odyssey.

Arizona’s 2007 Bloomsday celebration will feature the talents of the Arizona Readers Theater who will perform traditional readings from Ulysses, such as “Molly’s Lament,” throughout the evening. Expect to see Molly’s coffin enshrined in the stone cottage at the heart of the Irish Cultural Center. Live music will lighten the mood and traditional Irish and festival food will be available for purchase.

The price of Bloomin’ Beerfest tickets includes admission to the event, 16 tickets which can be presented to taste the wares of participating craft brewers, and a souvenir beer mug. Presale tickets can be purchased online for $25 from May 24 through June 14 at www.azbrewguild.com ($35 at the door). Beer tasting ticket sales are limited to 750 persons. “Designated Driver” tickets for $5 and children under 12 are admitted free of charge. “Readings only” tickets are offered at $15 and can be purchased at the Irish Cultural Center and at the gate. The Proceeds of this event benefit the Irish Cultural and Learning Foundation (ICLF), the 501©3 corporation that operates the Irish Cultural Center in downtown Phoenix in partnership with the City of Phoenix. The ICLF operates the Center and its educational and cultural programs to preserve and showcase Irish culture for the education and enjoyment of the people of Arizona.

ICLF’s partner in this event, the Arizona Craft Brewers Guild, is a statewide organization of small brewers dedicated to producing quality ales and lagers. They also produce events to familiarize the public with the fine brews produced by their members.

The Irish Cultural Center and Learning Foundation is a 501(c ) 3 Non-profit organization.

At twenty years of age the will reigns; at thirty, the wit; and at forty, the judgment.
Benjamin Franklin
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