Engaging Ireland News

Current news and information about Ireland and Irish travel

2011 St. Patrick’s Day Festival: Dublin

Have you firmed up your plans for St. Patrick’s Day 2011 yet?  The following article is from the Irish Independent newspaper’s online site from Wednesday, January 19, 2011.


This year’s St. Patrick’s Festival is jam-packed with world class entertainment and events.


Dublin’s streets will come alive as the annual parade kick starts the festival.

Onlookers will be dazzled by dancers, artists, street theatre troupes and marching bands coming from all corners of the globe.

DublinSwell –Words and Voices for the City of Literature

In a new and exciting move for the festival, DublinSwell –Words and Voices from the City of Literature, offers the public an once in a lifetime cultural evening celebrating Dublin as UNESCO’s new ‘City of Literature’.

This unique ticketed event will bring together a star studded line up of Irish faces from literature, music, film and theatre. Sebastian Barry, Roddy Doyle, Paul Durcan, Glen Hansard, Paul Howard ( Ross O’Carroll Kelly), Declan Hughes, Paula Meehan, Joseph O’Connor and many more will make the city come alive in an evening of imagination and inspiration.

In the stunning surrounds of the capital’s new Convention Centre, this promises to be a fitting and inspiring tribute to literary Dublin.

Tickets on sale now for Friday 18th March. See www.tickets.ie

Sharon Shannon

Sharon Shannon, one of Ireland’s most accomplished musicians will present a lively evening of traditional music at the National Concert Hall. Her unique style of accordion playing is celebrated worldwide, and her home-coming is sure to be a heartening musical experience.

Tickets on sale now for Saturday 19th March. See www.nch.ie

Events back by popular demand from last year include Céilí, Big Day Out and Treasure Hunt.

Céilí is an outdoor celebration of traditional Irish dancing on Friday 18th March. It offers you the chance to join in and fill the streets with dance as you immerse yourself in Irish culture and craic. Open to all, it promises to be an unforgettable afternoon filled with fun, as expert callers lead you through dances such as the Siege of Ennis, the Walls of Limerick and lots more.

The St. Patrick’s Festival Treasure Hunt is a fun filled free event for all ages. It takes place on Saturday 19th March. Crack the clues and conundrums that lie concealed in the many cultural venues around the city. The Treasure Hunt is great opportunity for all to explore or rediscover Dublin.

Big Day Out will feature the best of street theatre, performance and music in the heart of Georgian Dublin. With acts from Ireland and around the world, Merrion Square is transformed into a family wonderland on Sunday 20th March, a giant oversized playground

Posted 7 years, 1 month ago at 7:59 pm.

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Cork Folk Festival 30th Anniversary

If you thought the festival season was over, you should think again! The Cork Folk Festival (sponsored by Beamish) will celebrate its 30th anniversary in 2010 with a full slate of entertainment. The main attraction to the festival is music; however, there are other activities as well, including a parade up Oliver Plunkett Street on Sunday, sean nos and set dancing workshops, music classes, an open-air food market, and a free music trail at over 18 pubs around Cork City. There are even activities for the kids.

For more information or to purchase tickets, drop by their website at http://www.corkfolkfestival.com/. While you’re at the website, be sure to take a look at the beautiful print that the festival commissioned local artist and musician, Colm Murphy, to produce to commemorate the 30th anniversary of the festival. Only 200 numbered and signed prints will be made available, and the website tells you how you can get one for your very own!


Posted 7 years, 4 months ago at 3:04 pm.

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Ranelagh Arts Festival

From the Ranelagh Arts Festival website (http://www.ranelagharts.org/) “Who We Are” section:

 ”A group of Ranelagh residents came together in 2005 to deliver an innovative and inclusive Arts Festival for the local community from 29th September to 2nd October 2005. Our objective was to establish an annual arts festival for the people of the village and beyond. The aspiration of the committee was to create a diverse programme with something for everyone. The programme featured local artists and musicians, performances by children from the area, poetry, plays and film, as well as internationally recognised artists. “

The website further describes the festival as: 

  • An Arts Festival for the community, organised by local residents;
  • Our contribution to building a sense of community and celebrating Ranelagh, past and present;
  • An opportunity to promote the importance of the arts in people’s lives;
  • A festival for all age-groups, to be enjoyed by everyone living and working in Ranelagh and surrounding areas.

Included in the offerings are events related to literary arts, theatre arts, music arts, visual arts, cinematic arts, and other genres.  The 2010 Ranelagh Arts Festival runs from September 29 through October 3, and a full online program is available at http://www.ranelagharts.org/RAF_Prog_2010_Web.pdf. With a wide variety of venues and genres, there’s surely something for everyone at this festival!

Posted 7 years, 5 months ago at 3:49 pm.

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42nd Annual Birr Vintage Week & Arts Festival

Despite the difficulties the current economy places on local and regional events such as these,today begins the weeklong festival and celebration of history and the arts in Birr (Co. Offaly). The festival continues through August 20 and includes such diverse events as Circus Skills workshops, a busking contest, golf, traditional afternoon teas, a vintage tennis tournament, an Olde Time Traditional Fair, a   fly-in, road bowling, and various art venues such as a visual arts trail launch, art exhibitions, and artisan and craft markets. All this with the music, circus performances, and the big parade on Sunday (August 15), promise to make a week of fun for just about any taste.

For further information about this festival, visit their website at http://www.birrvintageweek.com to look at the full schedule of events for the week.

Posted 7 years, 6 months ago at 7:57 am.

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What’s on in Ireland

The festival season in Ireland is still in full swing as we enter the month of August. We’re highlighting just a few of the myriad events taking place all over Ireland.

Belfast Taste and Music Fest 2010 runs 4 – 8 August in, of course, Belfast at the Botanic Gardens. This festival brings together two favorite pasttimes of just about everyone we know: food and music. For more information on this event, visit http://www.belfasttasteandmusicfest.com/.

Also running from 4 – 8 August is the Dublin Horse Show, brought to you by Fáilte Ireland. This annual extravaganza was first held in 1864 and is aptly described on their website as  “a celebration of Ireland’s affinity with the horse, from the best show horses to the best international show jumpers.” The event is held a the Royal Dublin Society’s complex in Dublin. A list of events and details about the show can be found at http://www.dublinhorseshow.com/.

Don’t forget the annual Kilkenny Arts Festival, which begins on August 6 and continues through August 15, with events taking place in venues around Kilkenny. The festival website proclaims that this festival is “the very best in Irish and international visual art, clasical music, theatre and dance, jazz, world & traditional Irish music, literature, film, architecture, indie music, craft and children’s events.” Their website can be accessed at http://www.kilkennyarts.ie/ for a complete listing of events and festival information.

And, finally, if you’re anywhere near Kenmare on August 15, you will want to make a special effort to visit the Kenmare Traditional Annual Fair. You’ll experience a fair like the ones that used to take place all over Ireland but have faded into just a memory in most places. The Kenmare Chamber of Commerce website has a little bit of information and a contact e-mail at http://www.kenmare.ie/community-event-view.php?id=1.

These are just a scant few of the gatherings and festivals that will occur across Ireland this month. If we have left out your favorite event, leave a comment telling us about it. Slan go foill!

Posted 7 years, 6 months ago at 10:25 am.

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