Special to the Irish American News by Izzy Cusack
Celebrating his 50th year in show business, Hibernian Media Chairman Mike Houlihan is sparing no expense for his 5th Annual Hibernian Hooligan Ball as he puts together yet another spectacular “hooley” celebration.
“My 74th birthday is just two days before the event and looking back over my career I have much to celebrate, including Hibernian Media’s two weekly Irish radio programs The Hibernian Radio Hour and The Houli’s Hooley, both streamed online every Saturday night on Global Irish Radio and podcast at hibernianradio.org; Hibernian’s Annual Irish American Movie Hooley film festival, which recently moved to the Lake Theatre in Oak Park and is scheduled to return again next September for its ninth year; the recent return from their tenth Hibernian pilgrimage to Ireland starring “the darling girl from Clare”, Eimear Arkins, and now planning for next October, as well as a variety of books, films, and concerts currently in the works.
Starting out at the American Shakespeare Theatre in 1973 in Stratford, CT with an acting fellowship, Houli has trod the boards all over the country on regional theatre stages, Off and on Broadway, on TV, major motion pictures, and more recently writing, producing, and directing independent films. He continues his work today as a cultural warrior for Ireland after founding Hibernian Media in 2013 as a not-for-profit public charity dedicated to Irish and Irish American culture. “We tell stories to enlighten future generations while honoring our ancestors”, he sez.
“ We’re looking forward to our 5th Hibernian Hooligan Ball on Sunday Dec. 18th. This is our only fundraiser of the year, and we hope all our friends can join us to enjoy the music of THE LARKIN & MORAN BROTHERS, The Emerald Society Pipes and Drums band, and our terrific young dancers Michalene Donnelly, Maggie Olk, Tadgh Spillane, and Jack Bullington kicking up a ruckus! We’ll also be welcoming several surprise guest performers expected to join the party as well as raffling off some great Tullamore Dew Irish Whiskey for all our pals.”
Since falling out with long-time radio partner Skinny Sheahan over a half-eaten pizza one night at Cork & Kerry, Houli has dedicated his current radio show to Irish First Responders with great success and looks forward to putting together a new documentary film, IRISH COPS UNDER SIEGE, featuring the over 200 guests on the show who have told their stories of bravery and courage since 2019. Skinny and Houli eventually patched up their differences thanks to Fox’s Pizza, one of the sponsors of the radio show along with Flood Bros. Disposal, Madden Funds, Local 150 Operating Engineers, Cork & Kerry, The Irish American News, and Sheehy Funeral Home-“where all the right people go!”
If you’re looking for a good time, do yourself a favor and bring your money to The Cork & Kerry on Sunday December 18th, 10614 South Western Ave. from 3-8PM for great music, dance, laughs, and plenty of craic!
All donations are tax-deductible! More info at hibernianmedia.org