IT ALL STARTED WHEN...
My ancestors tapped me on the shoulder and whispered in my ear that I should create an event honoring the 100 year anniversary of the 1916 Easter Rising. Around 150 people attended from the Irish and Irish Diaspora community for an arts and cultural weekend.
Together with Elaine Barry and Sarah Dolan and the support of the Irish Heritage Club, the Irish Consulate, and Antioch University Seattle a two day event was born. Kicking off the weekend was an evening reception which included a reading of the Proclamation and singing by Irish Soprano, Sarah Dolan.
I moderated a lively panel discussion with the then Mayor of Seattle, the Vice-Irish Consul to the Western United States, plus professors in Irish history and religion and a northern Irish protestant minister.
Focus of the weekend
The main focus of the weekend celebrations was Women of the Rising. Women played a key role in all aspects of this pivotal event in Irish history; from grassroots education, procuring weapons, tending for the sick and injured, and on the frontline of the fighting itself such as Lily Kempson McAlerney (post Rising, Seattle resident).