The worldwide success of Riverdance has made Irish dance popular.
Troupes of Irish dancers have sprung up all over the United States.
It's thrilling to watch their lightning fast footwork. The girls dress
in beautiful costumes with hand-embroidered Celtic designs and their
curling wigs bounce as they launch themselves high into the air.
Our guest cook Maggie has been studying Irish dance since she was just 4-years old. She is one of the Burke Irish Dancers.
We visited them during a practice session and learned that more people
are involved in Irish dance in the United States than in Ireland.
Burke Dancers compete in regional and national competitions. It's hard
work to get your feet to fly like that. These young women are true
athletes and push themselves to their limits as their teachers
encourage them to kick their legs higher than their heads.
The History of Irish Dance is fascinating but its just one part of the rich Irish culture.
We've picked out some websites that we thought you might like to explore:
Learn the meaning and origins of Irish names
Irish stories for children
The story of St. Patrick
Learn why some Irish emigrated to the United States
Irish Pride doesn't end on St. Patrick's Day. There are Irish Heritage and Celtic Music festivals in major cities around the US.