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Dublin: 12°C Saturday 28 May 2022

No plans for the October bank holiday? Here's what's on over the long weekend

A quick round-up of the weekend’s best events.

STUCK FOR THINGS to do this bank holiday weekend?

Here are our picks, from pumpkin carving in Wicklow to a film festival in Monaghan. 

Whether you’re in the mood for Halloween or not….

0310 Launch of the Bram Stoker Festival18_90555461 Joy O’Brien Awesu (6) and Eric Moore (6) at the launch of the Bram Stoker Festival 2018. Source: Sasko Lazarov/Photocall Ireland


Sink your teeth into all that the Bram Stoker Festival has to offer this bank holiday. 

The festival celebrating the legacy of the author of Dracula which runs until Monday includes Victorian fun parks(Stokerland), live music, workshops, theatre, podcasts and audio tours. 

Xenophobia and the Vampire Myth, a panel discussion being held tonight in Trinity College will delve into the themes of the classic 1922 horror film Nosferatu, where the vampire character is cast as the most contemporary of feared ‘outsiders’.

For a full list of events, check out the website.

PatMcCabe Author Pat McCabe Source: Westival


This Bank Holiday Westport will be hosting both international and homegrown talent for Westival.

The music and arts festival will feature performances this weekend from Lisa Hannigan, Gilbert O’Sullivan, Dexy’s Midnight Runners and Le Galaxie. 

As well as musical acts, a number of theatre events are also taking place including an evening with Pat McCabe, the Booker Prize-nominated author. 

The evening of stories with the Butcher Boy author is on tonight at 7pm in Westport Town Hall Theatre – tickets are €15 and available here. 

For a full list of events at Westival’s head over to the website.

BAZ_2280 Source: Barry Cronin via Spirits of Meath


According to legend Samhain, the ancient Celtic festival that we now call Halloween, originated on the hill of Tlachtga, near Athboy more than 3,000 years ago.

The Spirits of Meath-Samhain Halloween Festival which celebrates this heritage is now in its tenth year with over 35 events.

In Athboy, you can learn more about the Story of Samhain during a torchlight procession that will make its way from the Fair Green up to the top of the hill on Halloween night.

Or if paddling is more your thing, take a boat tour through the Boyne Valley for scary stories of fact and fiction, legend and myth.

For more information on these events and more, check out the website. 

Macnas From The Wild Sky photo-call by Julia Dunin Photography-1 Macnas Performers JoJo Hynes,Yvette Pique and Connor Burke Kennedy launching the 2018 Macnas Parades in Galway. Source: Julia Duni


Over 54,000 people are expected to attend the Macnas Halloween Parade in Galway tomorrow evening. 

The parade will wind through the streets of Galway, starting at 5.30pm on the NUI Galway campus. 

Once the parade kicks off it will take the following route:

University Road, Salmon Weir Bridge, St Vincent’s Avenue, Francis St, Eglington St, William St, Shop St, Church Yard St, Mainguard St, Bridge St, O’Brien’s Bridge, Dominick St Lower, Dominick St Upper, Crossing canal, Raven’s Terrace, Claddagh Quay.

This year’s theme, Out of the Wild Sky, celebrates the act of transformation being unleashed upon the city.

Make sure to hit the streets early to get a good spot.

CMK_25102018_Guinness Cork Jazz Day of the Dead 01 (2) Dia De Los Muertos’ Jazz Parade which launched the Guinness Cork Jazz festival Source: Clare Keogh


Nearly 1,000 jazz musicians from over 20 countries are flying into Cork this weekend, including acts like China Moses, Laura Mvula, Blind Boys of Alabama, Nnenna Freelon and Stanley Clarke.

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To catch some of the headline acts head to the main venues that include The Metropole, The Everyman, Cork City Hall, Cork Opera House, Cork School of Music and Firkin Crane Theatre.

Also, this year’s festival will celebrate the golden era of the social dancehalls with The Swing Jive on tonight at Cork City Hall.

To see a full list of performances and events check out the Cork Jazz Festival website.

shutterstock_721235911 Source: Shutterstock/Alyssa Cerny


For some seasonal family fun, Kilruddy House in Southern Cross, Bray is hosting a Halloween festival today and tomorrow.

Pick and carve your own pumpkin in the walled garden and afterwards, you can head over to the scarecrow plots, where you can build your own scarecrow.

But you do need to bring your own clothes and heads for your scarecrow – straw and tights will be provided on the day.

Organisers have warned that there is now only a limited number of tickets available at the door on the day, more information here. 

Source: Element Pictures Distribution/YouTube


The Clones Film Festival is now in its 17th year and once again has a wide range of national and international films on its programme this year. 

Some films showing over the weekend include The Breadwinner, A Mother Brings Her Son To Be Shot and Rosie.

The full brochure can be found here.

Adamson’s Bar is hosting the after parties for the festival and Sunday is definitely not one to miss – an ABBA Sing Along Social followed by a disco with music from the movies. 

 Got any other suggestions? Let us know in the comments.

About the author:

Adam Daly

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