1 March 2015
By Bryan T. Smyth
Cork St. Patrick’s Festival 2015 this week launched their full
programme of events, with Cork Community Artlink’s parade participants
from Enable Ireland highlighting a festival full of community
involvement and cultural diversity with music, food and street
performances. Promising four days of free family fun, the Festival
runs from March 14th-17th throughout the city centre.
This year’s Festival kickstarts on Saturday 14th and Sunday 15th with
free family entertainment including music, street theatre and the
Festival Market set to transform Patrick’s Street from 10am to 6pm.
The Festival Market and music moves to Grand Parade on Tuesday 17th,
as the parade takes over the city. Throughout the festival, there will
be extensive series of traditional Irish Music Sessions with the Lee
Sessions, culminating in the newest addition to their festival
programme, the Paddy’s Night Fleadh, which takes place on Tuesday,
March 17th at 8pm in Cork Opera House. The Fleadh will feature John
Spillane, Jimmy Crowley, Karen Casey, Niall Vallely, Pulses of
Tradition, Anna Mitchell, and many more.
This year’s theme – Cultural Concepts, A Play On Culture is captured
throughout the festival in every form, from horticulture to a play on
language. With no two interpretations the same and a mix of
ethnicities making up nearly 20% of this year’s participants, the
diversity of culture in Cork is apparent.
Commenting at the launch, the Lord Mayor of Cork, Cllr. Mary Shields
said: “The Cork St Patrick’s Festival 2015 once again focuses on free
family entertainment and offers a fresh alternative to the other
festivals. By emphasising the family aspect of this celebration, we
are nurturing the Festival for future generations and renewing the
reputation of St. Patrick’s Day.”
“The city is set to be a hive of activity offering a variety of music,
food and street performances to suit every type of audience. We
welcome young and old to come and enjoy the cultural atmosphere with
over 80,000 people expected in the city for this year’s Festival,”
added the Lord Mayor.
The parade itself, led by the Lord Mayor and Grand Marshall, begins at
1pm on Tuesday, March 17th on South Mall and will travel onto Grand
Parade, St. Patrick’s Street and finish at Merchant’s Quay. A strong
sense of community involvement is evident in this year’s parade with
up to 3000 participants from community arts, sports and music groups
from the city, county and beyond taking part. These will be joined by
carnival floats with local commissions by Dowtcha Puppets and Cork
Community Art Link, along with commissions by street theatre companies
LUXe, Spraoi and Bui Bolg.
For details on the Festival programme, log on to
www.corkstpatricksfestival.ie, or join the Cork St. Patrick’s
Festival’s official Facebook and Twitter pages.
For those who cannot make it to Cork St. Patrick’s Festival, there
will be a live stream on www.corkstpatricksfestival.ie.
The Cork St. Patrick’s Festival is organised by Cork City Council.