2020 Kells Irish Festival

Kells Irish Festival

Oregon’s largest Saint Patrick’s Day Celebration enters it’s 29th year March 13-17th with Kells Irish Festival. The five-day event will take place at both Kells Irish Pub in downtown SW Portland and at the Kells Brewery on NW 21st. The party includes live music, traditional Irish dancing, bagpipers, Irish food, and libations, including Kells handcrafted beer. This year’s downtown festival is two blocks long, with the festival tent covering the parking lot at the corner of SW 2nd Ave. and SW Pine St. 

More from a press release:

A limited number of advance five day festival passes are available now for $30 at KellsPortland.com for ages 21 and over. Five day festival passes include a wristband good for admission at both pubs Friday through Tuesday and at the Festival Tent Saturday and Sunday of the event; they do not include admission to The Kells Smoker on Friday.

Kells Irish Pub

Gerard and Lucille McAleese established Kells in downtown Portland in 1990, and in 1991, they began the tradition of a St. Patrick’s Day Festival. As a family owned business, Kells is deeply connected with its community, and the McAleeses are recognized for their generosity to a number of nonprofits and community organizations. In advance of the Kells Irish Festival each year, the company sweeps all the money that has been tossed up on the restaurant’s ceiling throughout the year, then matches and donates it to The Center for Medically Fragile Children at Providence Child Center. Kells has donated more than $325,000 from the fundraiser over the years.



  • Pub: Open 11.30 a.m., minors allowed until 3pm, live music from 5 p.m. to 1 a.m. from Grafton Street, St. James Gate, Sami & The Groove, and Coming Up Threes. Friday only admission is $10 starting at 7 p.m.
  • Tent: Open 5 p.m. for Black Tie Smoker, a 21+ boxing event that pits Golden Glove boxers from Ireland against the best amateur pugilists of the Northwest. Smoker general admission is $30.
  • Brewery: Open 11:30 a.m., minors allowed until 8 p.m., live music from 8 p.m. to 12 a.m. from Brian Odell and Louder Oceans. No cover.


  • Pub: Open 11 a.m., no minors allowed, live music from 2 p.m. to Midnight from Boys of Malin, Jordan Harris, Sami and The Groove, The Hereafters, and Grafton Street. Saturday only admission is $20 starting at 4 p.m., good for both Festival Tent and Kells Irish Pub, includes a souvenir T shirt for the first 500 people with paid admission.
  • Tent: Open 11 a.m. to 1 a.m., minors welcome until 4 p.m., featuring entertainment by Yeates Academy Dancers, Kells Pipers, O’Douling, An Daire Dancers, Sami and The Groove, Grafton Street, Coming Up Threes, Kells Pipers, and Dance Machine. Saturday only admission is $20 starting at 4 p.m., good for both Festival Tent and Kells Irish Pub, includes a souvenir T shirt for the first 500 people with paid admission.
  • Brewery: Open 12 p.m. for Family Day with arts and crafts, face painting, Irish dancing by the Yeates Academy Dancers, the Kells Pipers, a petting zoo, and visits with Irish wolfhounds. Minors allowed until 6 p.m. Live music from 12 p.m. to 12 a.m. from Grafton Street, O’Douling, Mbrascatu, and Sami and The Groove. Saturday only admission is $20 starting at 4 p.m., includes a souvenir T shirt for the first 100 people with paid admission.


  • Pub: Open at 9 a.m., no minors allowed, live music from 10 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. from O’Douling, Sami & The Groove, Grafton Street, Danny O’Hanlon, and Sami and The Groove. Sunday only admission is $5 starting at 6 p.m.
  • Tent: Open 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. for Family Day with with arts and crafts, face painting, a petting zoo, visits with Irish wolfhounds, Celtic jewelry vendors, and entertainment by Grafton Street, Murray School Dancers, Beltaine, Kells Pipers, and Sami & The Groove. No cover.
  • Brewery: Open at 10:30 a.m. for Timbers v New England Revolution, minors allowed until 8 p.m., entertainment from 1 pm. to 10 p.m. from Murray School of Irish Dance, Boys of Malin, Crimson and Clover, O’Douling, and Jordan Harris. No cover.


  • Pub: Open 11.30 a.m., minors welcome until 8 p.m., live music from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. by Crimson and Clover and Grafton Street, no cover.
  • Brewery: Open 11:30 a.m. to Midnight, minors allowed until 8 p.m., live music, no cover.


  • Pub: Open 10 a.m., no minors allowed, live music from 10 a.m. to 2 a.m. from O’Douling, St. James Gate, Grafton Street, Beltaine, Wil Kinky, Grafton Street, Coming Up Threes, and Sami and the Groove. Live music upstairs in the Banquet Room from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. from Boys of Malin, Wil Kinky, O’Douling, and Danny O’Hanlon. Tuesday only admission is $20 all day, includes a souvenir T shirt for the first 500 people with paid admission.
  • Brewery: Open 11:30 a.m., minors allowed until 6 p.m., entertainment from 12 p.m. to 12 a.m. from Danny O’Hanon, An Daire Irish Dancers, Kells Pipers, Grafton Street, Murray School of Irish Dance, Coming Up Threes, Sami and The Groove, and the Kinky Brothers. Tuesday only admission is $20 all day.
Kells Irish Festival

Serving the Northwest since 1983, Kells Irish Restaurant is a local family-run establishment that is consistently ranked among the top Irish pubs in the United States. With locations in Seattle, Portland and San Francisco, it is a touchstone of each community that stays true to its roots. Kells owns its own farm in Wilsonville that supplies much of the organic food to its restaurants, including the lamb, the eggs, seasonal produce, and hops for its fresh hop beers in the fall. For more information, visit www.kellsirish.com.

Samurai Artist
Samurai Artist

Founder of The New School and most frequent contributor Ezra Johnson-Greenough has worked in the craft beer industry for almost 10 years, doing everything from illustrating beer labels to bartending at renowned beer bars and breweries like Belmont Station, Apex, Laurelwood and Upright Brewing. He has also had a hand in creating events like the Portland Fruit Beer Festival, Portland Beer Week, and the Brewing up Cocktails series. He is available for freelance consultation in marketing, events, graphic design and branding. Contact: SamuraiArtist@NewSchoolBeer.com