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Striking an Irish chord in California

Plans for the Belfast International Homecoming 2020 were unveiled Wednesday evening in Los Angeles. Among the guests at the Santa Monica reception were Dennis Doyle, a Los Angeles native who speaks fluent Irish, proudly sports an fáinne, and is a harpist of some renown in Southern California. He was joined by visiting emcee and Belfast native Geraldine Hughes, who took time out from filming for a new production in New Orleans with “Breaking Bad” star Bryan Cranston, to issue an open invite to the Homecoming to Irish American organizations in the Golden State. Host for the evening was another Belfast expat, Geraldine Gilliland, who is the proud owner of Santa Monica’s finest Mexican restaurant, Lula Cocina Mexicana. Among guests at the reception, which was addressed by Homecoming founder Máirtín Ó Muilleoir, were Sylvester McCoy, famed for his role as the Seventh Doctor Who and whose grandmother hails from Portadown, and the screenwriter of “I, Tonya,” Steve Rodgers.