Well, after few days of sleep and rest it is time to share some memories of this year’s Celtic Thunder Celebration. We started early this year as it seems the day goes by way too fast and it is impossible to get every activity in, in a short amount of time.

It seems even starting at Noon, we ran out of time. Maybe next year we'll have to start at 8am and go twenty four hours? I have heard comments about doing a potluck dinner? I did this once while I was in California and it seemed to work as most of you were close enough. However, since I'm in Dayton, it is too difficult to try and pull it off......But, now that I have two kitchens, it may work. Of course, we are a year away from our next celebration and have plenty of time to think this through. So, share your thoughts and maybe next year we can pull off a potluck dinner.

Not to worry Elaine, we will not make you do any cooking. I know it is a long way to Dayton from Dublin, Ireland and would be quiet difficult to pull-off something like bringing food all that distance. The same could be said for Mary and John, Julie and Steve and Leona from Australia!

Okay, now, the day started with guests arriving at Noon and just mingling with one another. We had several "Celtic Thunder Rookies" this year so the veterans showed the rookies the ropes of participating in a Celtic Thunder Celebration. It went well and everyone seemed to fit right in. This year we had the pool set up! However, the only one I saw in the pool was Colton White. He did seem to enjoy it.

As you all know, Judy and Pat Laughlin travelled all the way from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania to attend he celebration. They both were awesome and were a tremendous help with setting things up. Darcy White brought her mother, Joyce and Father, Sam along with her son, Colton "The Pool Dude". Darcy was our photographer and did a "bang-up" job as you will see. Darcy brought "Celtic Thunder Lei's" she made. What a great job Darcy! Guests were given Lei's as they arrived which seemed to get everyone in the "Irish" mood. Gladys and Hortense arrived bringing with them, Mary Ervin. Neighbour’s Kathy and Walt arrived bringing with them tasty morsels of the buffalo wing persuasion. Mary and Darcy jumped right in and helped in the kitchen while I was preparing casseroles for the dinner. The Kurlander's arrived bringing with them devilled eggs and macaroni salad. It seems the "food" stage is set and the party gets going. Neighbour’s Bill and Chris arrive bringing the appropriate liquid refreshment, Tullamore Dew Irish whiskey. Bill insists I have a sip. Boy, is that smooth stuff! Right there with Jameson's Whiskey. It seems Walt McMahan didn't believe me about how smooth it was and decided to give it a try. A bottle and a half later, Walt confirmed it was really smooth. Not sure, but heard something about him hitting the "Seley Mattress" early that evening.

Casseroles are done and it's time for the Celtic Thunder/Irish Trivia contest. The room is filled with excitement, anticipation and cheaters! Grumbling, comments and complaints filled the room. Everyone finally finishes and the results are tallied with these results:

FIRST PLACE: Barbara (Hortense) Seley. Barbara won two tickets to the Celtic Thunder concert in Reno, Nevada on November 9th along with a Celtic Thunder 2017 Cruise t-shirt, a Celtic Thunder “X” DVD, Bumper sticker and kozi. You will see the excitement she showed when she learned of her winnings.

SECOND PLACE: Joyce (Front Seat Joyce) White. Joyce won one of the special gifts that Elaine Massey and Declan Browne from Celtic Thunder donated to the party. An autographed Heritage DVD, signed by George Donaldson, Ryan Kelly, Keith Harkin, Emmet Cahill and Neil Byrne. A t-shirt, bumper sticker, and Kozi.

THIRD PLACE: Brian Jameson took home the Heritage CD signed by George, Ryan, Keith, Emmet and Neil. Along with that, a t-shirt and other assorted Celtic Thunder goodies.

FOURTH PLACE: Judy and Pat Laughlin tied. Kind of makes you wonder, huh? I mentioned before there was cheating abounding around the house. They assured me they missed different questions. They took CD/DVD's and other assorted Celtic Thunder goodies.

FIFTH PLACE: Shelia Kurlander, one of the "rookies", took home several Celtic Thunder gifts and goodies.

The usual grumbling by the losers were heard. BUT! No one is ever a loser at Lou's Celtic Thunder party, Everyone received their own copy of the CELTIC THUNDER “X “CD. Amazing how fast the grumbling stopped.

It's time for the show. Everyone takes their seat and the show begins! Of course, everyone seems to enjoy the show. Intermission rolls around and the food is ready. IAATF! Kevin Kurlander did the honours and BBQ'd tri-tip and chicken. Boy, did he do an outstanding job. The meats were done to perfection! Food is served! Casseroles, salads, French bread and for dessert, the most awesome Cindy Gray baked not one, but two pistachio cakes. What an amazing cake! Everyone is full and it's time to finish the show.

Of course, everyone enjoys the show and it's time to go home. What? already? Boy did this day go by fast. Sure seems like we need to make this party longer.....maybe we should add a day?

So, there you go. If you missed the party, you should consider coming next year. It really is loads of fun! For those who came this year, Thank you all for adding to the fun and frolic and helping celebrate ten years of Celtic Thunder! Congratulations to the winners of the Trivia contest. Who knows, maybe next year we will have a neighbourhood treasure hunt along with the trivia contest? Stay tuned.

Thanks again to Elaine Massey and Declan Browne for the awesome CD and DVD's. Really special!

I will forward more party photos in the days to come. Stay tuned!

The next day several of us took a train ride to Virginia City from Carson City. I'll do a story and photos on trip later.

On Monday, I took Judy and Pat to Lake Tahoe as they have never been there. Had great craic ! I'll send photos of that trip in a separate email. All I can say is Pat really likes going fast on mountain roads. The colour of green he turned kept with the Irish tradition. NOT! Stay tuned.

Thunderhead Foodie, Lou