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Dublin: 13 °C Saturday 15 August, 2020
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Feeling festive? Here are the Christmas-themed events on around the country this weekend

No matter where you are, there’s plenty to do this weekend.

Image: Leon Farrell/Photocall Ireland

IT MAY HAVE been unseasonably warm earlier this week, but Christmas really is just two weeks away now.

If you don’t want to brave the shopping centres this weekend, there’s an awful lot of Christmassy goings-on throughout the country for children and adults, alike, to get into the festive spirit.

Dublin

The Great Outdoors Christmas Festival kicks off at 1pm today on Chatham street, just off Grafton street.

A street party will be followed by Santa himself abseiling down the front of the Great Outdoors shop on the street.

The free event will have outdoor games, face paint, hot chocolate and Christmas music, before Santa heads to his grotto at 3pm to hear what children want this year.

At St Anne’s Church on Dawson Street, the Mornington Sisters will be singing old and new Christmas carols from 1pm.

Over on College Green, the Designer Dublin Christmas Market is back for its fifth year.

Visitors can browse the stalls of authentic Irish fashion, jewellery, art, furniture, ceramics, craft and delicious artisan food.

Entry to the market is free with all the stallholders’ fees going directly to the Society of St. Vincent De Paul.

The Dublin Flea Christmas Market is set to take place this weekend at the Point Village beside the 3arena, with over 100 stalls showcasing the work of independent designers, craft makers and artists.

Over at the Powerscourt Centre, the annual Simon House of Lights kicked off on Thursday but you still have a chance to catch the light projection show today at half 5.

Mulled wine and festive treats will be available, with all proceeds going towards the Simon Community.

And for anyone who likes the panto? Aladdin in the Helix and Robin Hood in the Gaiety are just some of the shows for children (and adults) on this weekend.

If Christmas Movies are your thing, there’s plenty on at the Light House Cinema in Smithfield this weekend, with Die Hard, It’s a Wonderful Life and Home Alone all hitting the screens.

And, for a slightly more orchestral feel, the Goethe-Institut Choir will perform Gloria at the National Concert Hall on Monday night. The choir will be joined by the Young European Strings Chamber who will perform a range of pieces dating from the 16th to 20th centuries.

Cork

There’ll be a musical feel to festivities in Cork this weekend.

Glow Cork at Grand Parade in the city has a hive of market stalls, food drink and festive entertainment to savour.

A giant Ferris wheel dominates the skyline while, this weekend, choral singing will be performed throughout the weekend.

Choirs as diverse as the Cór Scoil Spioraid Naoimh Cailíní and the Cork County Council Staff choir will perform.

There’ll also be a special art workshop for children in the Children’s Library at the Grand Parade at 2.30pm today, celebrating the world of Narnia from “The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe” fame.

The Cork International Choral Festival, meanwhile, will present ‘Christmas at the Cathedral’ for an evening of festive carols, song and poetry this evening.

Acclaimed soprano Majella Cullagh will be joined by the Littleshoes Players, the Montfort Youth Choir and PfizerPfonics at St Fin Barre’s Cathedral.

Bus Éireann are also running special late night buses to allow people to get back to areas such as Blarney, Midleton and Bandon tonight. More info can be found here.

Galway

The Galway Christmas market is open a few weeks now, and its range of market stalls, ferris wheel and festive lights are certainly worth a visit.

Tomorrow, a special concert in aid of the Galway Simon Community “The Knights Before Christmas” will take place in Galway Cathedral.

A children’s concert will take place at 3pm, before the main event at 7.45pm. The A Capella Knights will be joined by The Bluebirds, The Galway Bell Choir, The Hession School of Dancing and the Simon Music Project.

Want something a bit more active? Galway Simon have also arranged a 5/10k Santa Dash for Sunday.

Other choral events in Galway this weekend include the Cois Cladaigh annual Christmas concert at 8pm from St Nicholas Collegiate Church, in aid of Enable Ireland, and the Coole Harmonies choir of young singers will appear in the same venue tomorrow at 6.30pm.

Limerick

Limerick on Ice began on Thursday and is celebrating its 13th year at Arthur’s Quay this year. The ice skating rink will stay open well into January.

On Bedford Row, some of Santa’s helper elves will be helping to collect all of the children’s letters while offering seasonal workshops including tree decoration making, gift wrapping, cookie decorating and story telling.

Carousel rides, festive music and street performers will be on offer, while there’ll also be a collection for St Vincent de Paul Christmas Toy Appeal.

Starting today at Park Point on the Dublin road, Christmas in Dreamland will feature Santa himself at the all-inclusive and accessible indoor play centre. The special guests at Dreamland this year include Mickey and Minnie Mouse.

The Christmas Experience at St John’s Castle, meanwhile, offers a host of festive treats for children including puppet shows, magic shows and an appearance from Santa, himself.

Synonymous with Christmas time, the Coca-Cola truck will be stopping at the Parkway Shopping Centre today too.

Waterford

In Waterford, meanwhile, there’s a host of Christmas events on, with the city’s Winterval festival providing a wide range of activities for the young and old.

A multitude of events ranging from an elves workshop, choral singing and the Christmas market are all on this weekend.

Some of the more unique events on show include the Toy Museum featuring games through the ages and the Polish Christmas Craft Market.

For all your Winterval needs, you can find more info here.

Read: Gardaí pulled over a rather suspicious character in Kildare this morning

Read: The good people of Sligo have built this Christmas market inside an airport hangar

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Sean Murray

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