Festivals and Events
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Festivals and Events
Festival of Fires. At the end of April, this event at Westmeath's Hill of Uisneach (the historic residence of the High Kings of Ireland and a gathering place for tribes and clans) features theater and music and is Europe's oldest festival. www.festivalofthefires.com.
Percy French Summer School. In mid-July, one of Ireland's best-loved songwriters, Percy French, is celebrated in Roscommon town and at Castlecoote House with a summer school, complete with concerts and lectures. French was born at Cloonyquinn House near Elphin; his best-known songs include "Are Ye Right There Michael?" and "Phil the Fluther's Ball." Co. Roscommon. www.percyfrench.ie.
Castle Palooza Festival. Music dominates at this festival, held at Charleville Castle in Tullamore over the August bank-holiday weekend. www.castlepalooza.com.
Flat Lake Festival. County Monaghan holds the Flat Lake Festival in Clones in mid-August. The event focuses on arts, books, films, and music, with numerous literary readings in tents and straw-filled barns—there's even sheep karaoke. www.theflatlakefestival.com.
Terryglass Arts Festival. This event in North Tipperary presents music, dance, and street theater for five days in the third week of August. www.terryglassartsfestival.ie.
Tullamore Show. Ireland's biggest agricultural gathering attracts 60,000 annually in early August to the Butterfield estate near Blueball on the road to Birr. An international visitor center caters to the huge crowds of overseas visitors who flock to see the largest assembly of cattle anywhere in Ireland competing in 1,000 classes for 42 national titles. Tullamore, Co. Offaly. www.tullamoreshow.com.
Pumpkin Festival. You'll see some of Europe's largest pumpkins at this annual festival in Co. Cavan's Virginia, held on the October holiday weekend. www.virginia.ie.
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