Shannon Festival returns to the heart of the town for the second year from Friday 8th until Sunday 10th September. Organisers have completed the programme of events for an exciting weekend full of music, arts, entertainment and fun for all the family.
Local singer-songwriter Adam Moloney has been signed up by 7-times Grammy winner Will.i.am and is working on his first album.
This year’s festival sets out to provide a real-time demonstration of the inherent cultural possibilities that can be achieved once The Shannon Venue is delivered.
Ahead of the event, local artist Sinéad Scullion and the Junk Monkeys are working away on some art pieces, as is Karen Barrett who is making flags and some backdrops, all helping to make the weekend colourful and interesting.
Christy Collins and his fantastic colleagues from the Men’s Shed are also assisting in the preparations, and a great team of volunteers is being assembled to help everything run smoothly.
Festivities will begin with a lunchtime gathering on Friday the 8th in SkyCourt, where people can get a bite to eat in the festival tent while being entertained by some talented local musicians.
Providing the snacks in the food hub beside the festival tent will be Hells BBQ, Boxty’s Irish Street Food, Mo Crawleys Crepes, Shannon Ices and Jaynes Churros.
At 3.00pm, Tricia McDonald will take a Children’s Yoga class, followed by Adult Yoga with Julie Hyde at 4.00pm before Drum Dance Ireland hold a workshop for all age groups.
Paddy Casey returns to Shannon Festival and will top the bill on Sunday
Minister of State, Pat Breen, will conduct the official opening ceremony at 7.15pm before that Eclipse Stage School will showcase their talents.
Soon after, the evening entertainment will kick-off with the Royal Bhangra Dance Group followed by popular local singer-songwriter Adam Moloney. Coincidently Adam celebrates his 15th birthday on the night. Big Generator will close out the evening, pumping out all the hits.
Saturday’s activities commence with a market from 10.00am to 3.30pm which will be followed by a variety of children’s entertainment hosted by HT Promotions. A basketball demonstration, Maloney’s Berg GoCarts, Wild Encounters and lots more will also be keeping people busy.
Music for the evening will be provided by three groups with a strong Shannon connection; Three Screws Loose, Protobaby and One September, who will celebrate their 30th anniversary on the night. Young September (the next generation) will also sing a few tunes.
On Sunday the 10 o’clock Folk Group Mass will relocate from Sts John & Paul Church to the Festival Tent, to be followed by a Christian Church Service.
During the morning festival-goers will have a chance to view the vintage cars and scooters and perhaps enjoy some coffee from 11 am to 1.00pm.
World renowned choir director, arranger and vocal coach, Mark DeLisser, will host a community choir singing workshop at 12 noon.
Family fun entertainment will be hosted by James Sexton of HIYA while from 2.30 to 4.00pm Shannon Musical Society will hold a dance workshop, and a drama workshop at 3.00pm, all in the festival tent.
Sixmilebridge Folk Club and local musicians will lead a session of traditional music, organisers hope to have some set dancers on hand to encourage others to join in.
On Sunday evening the Shannon Festival will draw to a close with well-known musicians Mundy followed by Paddy Casey and friends.
Throughout the weekend a number of activities have been arranged for the SkyCourt malls. These include buskers, street entertainers, puppet shows, art classes, photography workshop, writing workshops with Rachael English and Madge O’Callaghan and drop-in-drama.
Visitors can also attend demonstrations by the Fire Service, the Defence Forces, the Road Safety Authority mobile unit, a Chemifloc science demo and much more.
Shannon Festival Committee would like to acknowledge the support of local traders and companies who are making donations or offering goods and services. They would also like to thank the community for giving generously at the flag day held in the town centre earlier in the year. These efforts have helped to make this festival possible and free to all who attend.
For more information and the official running-order, check out shannonfestival.com or the Shannon Festival Facebook page.