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Let Be Known…

January 16, 2009

Set Dancing, originally uploaded by IrishFireside.

Let it be known that Tom Sweeney is kind and generous!

He has been the most gracious host and tour guide for our stay in the Twin Cities.

Last night was amazing! We did a whirlwind tour, and met so many wonderful people.


First stop, Keegan’s in downtown Minneapolis. The place was hopping for Thursday Quiz Night. Terry and Virginia gave us a warm Irish-American welcome, and Tom Dahill provided everyone with some great music.

Funny thing is that Tom Dahill started chatting with Liam, and with the mention of Knockhopple, Tom began reciting a few lines from a little known poem called Knockahopple Road. HOW could he have known it? It was written by a distant relative of Liam’s named Paddy Hill. Ends up Paddy taught Tom “everything he knows” about Irish music. Paddy gave him the fiddle he now plays. Small world, huh?


Then is was off to Saint Paul to visit Kate Dowling at the Irish Music Center. There we had the pleasure of sitting in on an Irish music course led by Daithi Sproule from Altan. It was a great opportunity…and the class was wonderfully conversational – people even brought treats!

If we lived in the area we’d definitely be signing up for courses.

Then it was back to Minneapolis for a great round of Irish set dancing. It was in a great old building, and after we slid our way to the studio we were created by a charming group of set dancing enthusiasts sipping wine and beer with some healthy snacks…love that.

Liam LOVES set dancing, so he spun his way through paces and had a fantastic time!!!

When we were back at the Sweeney home, we stood around chatting for a bit. Even though we weren’t hungry, Tom cooked up a package of absolutely the best-tasting hot dogs ever. Mmmmmm.

Then it was off to bed.


In the morning, Tom cooked up a hearty breakfast and more great conversation ensued. We got back on the road much later than expected, but it was so worth it.

Now, we’re heading south to Liam’s brother’s in Iowa. And tonight we plan to experience the Gunder Burger at the Irish Shanty in Gunder. Should be an adventure.

Note: I’m writing this from my phone, so please excuse any typos or overly brief descriptions (FYI – I don’t know texting abbreviation and acronyms, so luckily I won’t be putting you through that).

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. Seth Hoyt permalink
    January 19, 2009 4:58 AM

    That Tom Sweeney: what a fiddler! Plus, he’s a really good guy, with a heart of gold, and I echo those very accurate words about him. Plus, it’s fun to see him bow in hand.

  2. Meghan Sweeney permalink
    January 20, 2009 12:58 AM

    I’m a bit biased, but I agree that my father is one of the most genuine people. I know that he enjoyed hosting and showing you around the Twin Cities.

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