STILLWATER — Parading bagpipers, a blazing bonfire, pub food, a stilt-walker, and a fire juggling priest will be a few of the highlights at Bagpipes & Bonfires — a Celtic street festival — at the Episcopal Church of the Ascension in Stillwater on Saturday, Sept. 23. This popular community event is expected to attract more than 500 people, many in kilts and costume, for a party in a large tent in front of the church.
The festivities, recommended for adults 21 and older, will commence at 5:30 p.m. with a ceremonial lighting of the bonfire and more than 20 members of The Brian Boru Irish Pipe Band of St. Paul parading up and down Third Street. Inside, Straight Blues Band with six musicians will take to the main stage at 7 p.m. for dancing and merriment until the end of the party at 10 p.m.
Revelers may purchase homemade pub food, Lift Bridge Brewery beers, wine and non-alcoholic refreshments, as well as games of chance including a wine toss, and Hammershlagen. All are invited to participate in a kilt contest for a chance to win prizes.
A special Bagpipes & Bonfires' raffle will feature a grand prize of two round-trip airline tickets to Ireland ($3,500 value.) Second prize is a weekend getaway to Madeline Island for two via private charter airplane out of Lake Elmo with a $500 voucher for food and lodging ($1,530 value). Third prize is a six-night stay in a private three-bedroom townhouse in Orlando, Fla., just minutes away from DisneyWorld and Universal Studios with a $500 voucher for food and fun ($1,500 value). Three additional raffle prizes include a night out on the town in Stillwater with dinner for six at Pub 112; a behind the scenes tour of Ascension; and a romantic gondola ride on the St. Croix River. Raffle ticket holders need not be present to win. Tickets cost $10 and are available in advance by contacting Jen Truman and firstname.lastname@example.org.