The Niagara Celtic Heritage Festival & Highland Games was formed in Autumn of 2001. The two day event draws about 13,000 guests and participants, and has become an important tradition for locals and visitors alike.
Located less than an hour from both Buffalo and Rochester, NY, guests are immersed in the traditions and pageantry of Ireland, Scotland, Wales and all things Celtic! If you haven't attended before, join us this year and celebrate Celtic culture in an amazingly memorable way. rack card (pdf)
Due to the current worldwide pandemic, we have moved our 20th anniversary festival to September 18 & 19, 2021. But we're still hosting a smaller gathering this year! We hope to still gather and celebrate Celtic culture within a smaller and more exclusive weekend. Tickets are limited so buy yours now before they sell out!
*Please email email@example.com with additional other questions.
Due to the evolving nature of this situation, details are subject to change without notice. Any updates to CDC or state regulations will be adapted into this plan, and we will notify all ticket buyers with a final list prior to the gathering. We appreciate your cooperation during this unprecedented time.
We are implementing specific procedures and practices that are in line with CDC guidelines for the safety and health of our volunteers, participants and guests. These new procedures will cover three areas - screening, spacing and sanitization. We will update the list in September based on the most up to date protocols, but attendees should prepare for the following:
The CDC advises that older adults and any people with serious underlying medical conditions might be at higher risk for severe illness from COVID-19. People who are infected but show no symptoms can spread COVID-19, any interaction with the general public poses an elevated risk of exposure, and we cannot guarantee that you will not be exposed during your visit. Your participation means you understand and accept any personal risks associated with your visit.
Can I purchase tickets when at the gathering?
No, tickets are only sold through our website, and there is a limited amount. Purchase here.
Can I get a refund if I purchase a ticket?
No. Due to the uncertain climate we are all facing, all tickets are non-refundable even if the event is cancelled. As we are a 501c3 not-for-profit, your ticket would become a tax deductible donation. This is a requirement for us to ensure we can afford the high costs associated with planning and hosting this year’s gathering. This unusual measure is in place to keep us financially secure so we can keep hosting festivals, starting with our 20th anniversary next year. We realize this is not a risk you may feel comfortable with, and understand if you choose to wait and join us next year.
I can no longer attend. Can I give my tickets to someone else?
Everyone must be properly registered this year. If you decide to transfer tickets, please email firstname.lastname@example.org to complete an approved transfer. Any tickets improperly transferred or resold will not be valid for use.
Why are ticket limits in place?
Guests are limited in the number of tickets they can purchase as a security measure, and to help allow as many people as possible the option to buy tickets.
Where do I go to get my temperature taken?
Temperatures will be taken in a screening area at the start of the entrances.
What will happen if someone has a high temperature?
Anyone with a temperature of 100.4 degrees or greater will not be able to enter, and are encouraged to see a doctor.
Will I be required to wear a face covering?
Yes. We are following CDC guidelines as well as local health protocols. The only exception is children under the age of three who are not required to wear facial coverings.
Anyone found not wearing a face covering at any time (except during a meal) will be removed from the premises by security. Only performers are permitted to remove face coverings temporarily during their performance, but they will be kept a good distance from attendees.
What is considered an appropriate facial covering for my visit?
- They must cover an individual’s nose and mouth, and remain safely attached to your head.
- Costume masks and veils are not proper facial coverings.
- Guests who cannot wear a mask due to disability or medical issues must alternatively wear a plastic face shield.
What about wearing face coverings while eating?
You are allowed to remove your face covering to eat, provided you stay a safe distance from those not in your party. Seating areas will be spaced out appropriately.
You are required to bring your own to enter the gathering; they will not be available for purchase or free at the entrances.
Some attractions and events will remain part of the gathering, all of which are safe enough to continue. A large amount of annual activities will not happen for the gathering, due to their hands-on nature, but will return for our festivals. Please peruse through our website for specifics, which will be updated all summer.
No, the entire grounds are used for parking and the festival itself. For nearby campsites please check lodging.
Includes parking, all entertainment, events, attractions, and kids activities. You may choose to purchase food or products from vendors.
For this year's gathering, we're offering one price per day only.
All parking is FREE, no matter the length of your stay. Once you reach the grounds we will help direct you to the closest possible parking spot based on your arrival time.
There is a special parking area along the entrance (simply ask the traffic staff for directions once you reach the grounds). The festival has accessible facilities and large paths for wheelchairs.
- Our grounds are large, so be prepared to do plenty of walking! We do not have on-site wheelchairs, canes or other personal needs, so please remember you will need to bring your own.
- Anything othen than single-rider scooters/ people movers will not be allowed on the grounds. Bikes, rollerblades, skateboards, hoverboards, etc. are not permitted.
- We do not permit our transportation to be used for any private deliveries, tours or other personal trips. Vehicles are on-site strictly for emergencies and grounds/ staff use only.
Click Here to view places to stay nearby, which includes nearby hotels, motels, bed & breakfasts, campgrounds and more.
Yes, we have ATMs inside festival grounds.
Tickets include wristbands which allow same day re-entry anytime at all our gates.
What is Allowed?
- Lawn chairs, chairs, jackets, sweaters and blankets are encouraged
- Dogs are permitted. See Rules Under 'Bring Your Dog'.
- Your own supply of wipes, hand sanitizer, etc. to better assist personal safety.
What is Not Allowed?
- Animals other than dogs
- Outside Alcohol
- Outside food & drink
- Coolers and baskets
- Bikes, rollerblades, skateboards, hoverboards, etc.
- Peddling or soliciting
Any items brought onto the grounds from this list, or which are deemed a nuisance or danger to others, must be removed from the property upon request. Persons may be removed from the premises with no refunds.
Absolutely, provided they do not restrict required face coverings. We encourage all guests to come in costume. Looking for an outfit before you arrive? Visit our Resource Center for ideas.
The fairgrounds has trees, buildings and shelters. During the gathering, many tents will also help act as cover for any type of weather.
There are restrooms on site, along with several portable sanitary facilities and hand washing areas. We will also offer many hand sanitizer stations.
Yes, it is a wonderful event for children of all ages, and 12 & Under are FREE. There are special performances, kid-friendly food and an area filled with activities and crafts. Nearly everything offered for kids is FREE (except food and vendor purchase)! The paths through the fairgrounds are suitable for strollers. Sorry, but we do not host carnival rides. Click here for more info.
No, coolers, baskets, and all outside food and drink (except water) are NOT permitted on the grounds. You will be turned away at the gates, so please leave your items at home or in your car.
Are you open during inclement weather?
We are open rain or shine, and do not offer refunds in the event of inclement weather.
Only dogs are permitted at the fairgrounds during our festival. Please read our rules here before you come!
**No other animals/ pets are allowed for their safety and the security of others.
Lost items may be turned in to Guest Services, located at the Ticket Entrance. All items will be kept for at least 30 days after the Festival. To inquire about lost items, call 716-778-5730 or email email@example.com.
The Niagara Celtic Heritage Festival staff and volunteers take no responsibility for personal effects and possessions left on premises during or after any event. We do, however, maintain a lost and found and will hold recovered items at least 30 days. Every attempt will be made to return any recovered item to its rightful owner.
If anyone in your party goes missing please notify the nearest security staff. They will commence a sweep of the grounds and work with the entire festival staff, using safety protocols, until the missing person(s) are found.
Our First-Aid station, run by local fire safety and medics, is located next to The Great Hall. If you're unable to reach the station, notify the nearest festival volunteer or security staffer and they will ensure the first-aid staff comes to you.
In the event of a large emergency, information and instructions will be announced on stages and over the fairground-wide sound system. In a suspension of operations, guests are encouraged to seek shelter in the permanent structures of the property, or to vacate the grounds if it is safe to do so.
Contrary to occasional beliefs, few events anywhere are free to attend. Most require parking fees, tickets for highlight events, free to enter but charged per activity, or like us and many others: admission. Why? We pay for nearly everything happening on our grounds: hundreds of performers, historians and special guests, security, insurance, electricity, kid's activities, tents, chairs, benches, animal farms, and on and on and on. Any festivals that are free are either small, government supported, or have no bills. Niagara Celtic is proud to be self-sustaining, while continuing to give back to countless other businesses, groups and performers by including them in our weekend events.
Niagara Celtic is held only one weekend a year, but we are no different from The Sterling Renaissance Festival, Darien Lake or any other place that has activities from sunrise to sunset included in the fare. Plus, parking is free and children 12 & under are not charged admission...and we spend a large budget annually to ensure there's plenty of free crafts, games and activities for kids.
So to sum up, your admission covers all the wonderful things you see and do all weekend-long, and towards the next year's festival (with any minor surplus supporting other local and Celtic groups/ activities...so it all goes back to our community). We're so grateful for all the support throughout the years, which allows our festival to continue growing, making it bigger, better and more worth the admission every year!
Festival Director: Beth Banks
Associate Directors: Cate Banks, Vicki Banks
Administration: Phil M. Banks
Care & Insight: Wallace Orr, Olivia Dickenson
Clans: Chris Nelson, Tim Nelson
Electric: Ian Dinse, Ryan Johnson
Celtic Arts Theatre: Diana Straube, Tim Straube
Celtic College: Gretchen Schweigert
Dragonfly Stage: Michael Tomaino, Kendyl Glena
Fireside Stage: Jacki Minchen, Aaron Greenwald
Motte & Bailey Arena: Rebecca Schweigert
Historical Groups: Phil Dickenson
Pipe Band Logistics: Sharon Tomaino
Entrance: Deb Bronschidle, Afton Brousse
Fire Sculpting: Chris Banks
Greeters: Paula Banks-Dahlke
Grounds: Bob Loveland
Grounds Hospitality: Amy Miner-Loveland
Guidebook: Kathy Lamont
Highland Games: Paul Krest
Office: Phil M. Banks, Ryan Johnson
Participant Check-In: Jamie Ketch, Kelly Ketch
Patron Hospitality: Nicola King, Kathleen Leibensperger
Pubs & Bar: Ryan Flore, Talan Pomeroy, Benjamin Martin, Wallace Orr, John Howard
Radios: Matt Tomaino, Ashton Wallak
Security: Richard Schweigert, Gregg Forsman, Justin Chang
Souvenirs: Jamie Keller, Sharidan Hathaway
Ticket Booth: Kim Dickenson, Matthew Seib, Wendy Clark, Melissa Schaefer
Traffic: Brian Minchen, Drew Clark
Vendors, Food: Catherine Chapman
Vendors, Retail & Community Groups: Liz Allore
Volunteers: Sheena Bakos, Duane Bakos
Wee Folk Shire: Kristine DeGlopper-Banks, Kathy O'Keefe, Jordan Black
special thanks to:
Leave your feedback on our Facebook Page! Your comments help improve our festival every year. You may even see your comments added to this page!