San Patricio Mexican-Irish Festival

Clifden, Co. Galway

A five-day Irish-Mexican festival celebrating the John Patrick Riley of Clifden, one of the several hundred immigrant Catholic Irishmen who defected from the US Army and formed the Saint Patrick's Battalion (Battalion de San Patricio) to fight for Mexico in the 1846-48 Mexican-American War.

Celebrated as heroes in Mexico every September, the San Patricio Battalion were a group of soldiers who broke away from the Anerican army in 1847 and joined with their opposition, the Mexicans, in solidarity. Led by John Riley of Clifden, the 'San Patricos' paid the ultimate price for deserting America, but are still revered as heroes in Mexico for their willingness to fight and die with them, a fellow Catholic people.

This shared Mexican and Irish episode in history will form the backdrop for a joing commemoration in Clifden, which will be attended by His Excellency, the Mexican Ambassador to Ireland, Carlos Garcia de Alba and his embassy officials. Mexican and Irish traditional music and dance, talks and exhibitions, will take place in various venues over the five days.

Date 7. Sep - 12. Sep 2012

San Patricio Mexican-Irish Festival