Are you looking for an alternative activity next weekend, something different than the Minnesota State Fair or the Renaissance Festival? How about the Jessenland Irish Festival on Sunday, August 28?
In addition to Irish music and dance, artists, kids’ games, vendors, a silent auction, and a presentation about the history of Jessenland (at 1:30 pm), Irish Genealogical Society International (IGSI) members will be around all afternoon to answer your questions about your family history.
Jessenland, located about an hour southwest of the Twin Cities, was Minnesota’s first Irish settlement. The parish of St Thomas was organized in the early 1850s. Supposedly Jessenland Township – initially “Jesse’s Land” – received its name from Jesse Cameron, who was the first to arrive in the area.
The current church building was constructed in 1870. In 2006 the church began operating as an oratory, which means place for prayer.
The Jessenland Irish Festival is a way to preserve the settlement’s history while raising funds for the upkeep of the church.
Read more about the festivities here.