life is short

It's the June Bank Holiday ... Here are 7 VERY different festivals to check out this weekend

As Grandpa Simpson once said (admittedly, before dozing off) you shouldn’t kill time … you should savour it.

SO – IT’S ANOTHER big Bank Holiday weekend.

Any plans?

If you’ve been up to your torso in work all week, and haven’t really thought about it – here are some last-minute suggestions.

Bear in mind – the weather forecast isn’t fantastic. So if you are planning on checking out some festival entertainment, maybe pack those wellies.

1. Bloom in the Park

Ireland’s ‘largest Gardening, Food and Family’ event is now in its ninth year – and it’s become hugely popular.

If you like gardens, it’s the place to be.

This year’s event showcases 25 ‘exquisite’ show gardens “from the very best of Ireland’s landscape gardeners and designers”. You can also check in on 125 Irish food producers, a fashion stage and a craft village at the sprawling Phoenix Park site. 

There’s also a Children’s Zone – presumably, some sort of corner where you can stack the kids for the afternoon, as you head off to enjoy the pretty flowers.

It runs from today until Monday, and tickets are €18.


2. Forbidden Fruit 

Just across the river from Bloom – but with a slightly later start time (and curfew, thankfully), Wu Tang Clan headline tonight at the Royal Hospital Kilmainham music festival, with support from Jamie XX, Groove Armada and many (many) more.

It’s on tomorrow too – Richie Hawtin headlines, alongside the likes of Booka Shade and East India Youth.

Tickets are €59.50 (per night).


3. The Salmon Leap

Organisers of the Salmon Leap festival – a new folk and traditional event in Co Kilare, are at least promising copious amounts of canvass (see below).

The always excellent Kila headline tonight – and Sharon Shannon’s on tomorrow. Tickets are €35 per day.

4. Anyone for Opera?

Fancy something different? Rossini’s ‘La Cenerentola’ (Cinderella) is being performed in the grounds of Lismore Castle in Co Waterford tonight and tomorrow.

The show starts at 8pm (both nights) and the Castle gardens are open, with food and wine on offer, from 6.30pm.

Tickets are €95.

lis Lismore Music Festival Lismore Music Festival

5. Cork-bound

If you’re in the Cork area – the likes of Paddy Casey, Ham Sandwich and Hermitage Green will be playing at the Bandon Festival between tonight and tomorrow.

Tickets are pretty good value – €20 per adult for weekend entry, and €15 for a day-ticket.

ham Bandon Music Festival Bandon Music Festival

6. The Cat Laughs 

You know what this is.

The annual Kilkenny comedy-fest has been ongoing since Thursday, and the big ticket events will likely be sold out by now.

There’s so much on though – you’re bound to get in somewhere… Ardal O’Hanlon, Andrew Maxwell, David O’Doherty, Dom Irrera and Jack Dee are among the established stars playing this year.


7. Back in the Big Smoke

Finally – back in Dublin, but at the opposite side of the city, the Dublin Port Riverfest is expecting to attract around 65,000 between today and Monday.

There are plenty of free events. Highlights include the arrival of seven tall ships and schooners – all of which will be open to the public.

Organisers are also promising fly-boarder demonstrations, tug boat “dances” (us niether), river kayaking and free tours of the Jeanie Johnston Tall Ship.

The festival culminates with a Grand Parade of Sail on Monday.

All Aboard'Roz Purcell pi Leon Farrell / Photocall Ireland Leon Farrell / Photocall Ireland / Photocall Ireland

Read: Former home of Rory McIlroy on market for €3.5 million

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