Cruinniú na Cásca: What's Happening Nationwide?
On Easter Monday, April 17, the very first Cruinniú na Cásca celebration takes place across the country. This new, large-scale, free festival invites members of the public nationwide to join in a vibrant celebration of contemporary Irish life and creativity. While Dublin hosts the festival’s largest hub, the programme of events nationwide is as culturally captivating as it is varied.
Here are just some of the events taking to our nationwide streets and public spaces, cities, towns and villages on this very special day of cultural celebration:
Stroll the streets of Cork City, where you can brush up on your cúpla focal by joining a local history walking tour, courtesy of St. Peter’s, before stopping in to the Triskel Arts Centre for a late afternoon screening of Irish animated film Song of the Sea. Or wander to the historic 17th-century structure, Elizabeth Fort, for unmatched views of the city below and a guided tour too.
Glór, Ennis will kick off Clare’s events with a family-friendly cultural programme of activities including a sing-a-long screening of the 1967 Disney classic The Jungle Book, as well as craft and dance workshops to get everyone’s creative juices flowing.
In Donegal, Glenveagh Castle will be welcoming visitors who’d like to roam the castle, grounds and gardens and even meet some historical figures with fascinating tales to tell.
In Dingle, Kerry, the Lúmina light, art and music event takes place. In association with Other Voices, local schools and performers have been collaborating on creative projects and on Easter Monday their collaboration will be showcased with an exhibition of projections and light sculptures along with live music. In Tralee, visitors to Siamsa Tíre can enjoy Beautiful Beasts, an exhibition of sculpture for children presented by The Ark, Dublin, while interactive brass instrument workshops for children should also get horns tooting.
In Naas, Kildare, people can celebrate the day the old-fashioned way with a traditional Easter Parade, this time showcasing the community’s cross-cultural creativity.
Dunamaise Arts Centre in Portlaoise will host just some of Laois’ Cruinniú na Cásca events, including special performances from Laois Dance Ensemble, Music Generation Laois and renowned singer-songwriter John Spillane, whose recently composed song 100 Snow White Horses, was inspired by Laois’ historical figures.
Children in Leitrim’s Carrigallen area can dive into Curiosity Workshops that cover creative art, electronics and instrument building and drama too. St George’s Heritage Centre in Carrick-on-Shannon will also host family sing-a-long workshops, town tours and a performance by the Millennium Choir.
Limerick’s citizens and visitors are invited to explore the city and county’s history and landscape via guided tours of Georgian and Medieval Limerick, tours of county towns Adare and Kilmallock and self-guided walks across the county’s stunning scenery.
The people of Abbeyshrule, Longford, can see the local 12th century Cistercian Abbey illuminated with a special ceremony of light held at dusk, this will be complemented by musical performances from local artists. While in Ardagh, families can relax together with a lively afternoon of storytelling.
The ancient surroundings of Louth’s Mellifont Abbey will become an atmospheric venue for the day, hosting performances from local traditional music act Kern and lauded fiddler Gerry O’Connor. Those curious about the abbey’s 900-year-old heritage can also find out more from archaeologist Geraldine Stout.
Mayo’s Jackie Clarke Collection will hold ‘Bee Creative in Ballina’, a family day of workshops, displays, food, music, competitions, face-painting, an Easter egg hunt and more, celebrating the wonder and importance of wild bees.
Clones Library in Monaghan will be encouraging would-be sculptors to get creative and try their hands at modelling and sculpting. While in Offaly, art meets nature at Lough Boora Discovery Park where artists have created a series of impressive large-scale sculptures that are now part of the park’s permanent collection.
Take a soundtracked trail in Sligo with a guided tour of the town’s heritage sites, punctuated along the way with traditional Irish music. Or enjoy a day of entertainment, music and cultural fun at Strandhill’s People’s Market.
Theatrical circus is on the menu in Thurles, Tipperary, with A Fairies’ Tail courtesy of renowned aerial dance company Fidget Feet.
Step back to the 12th century at Athlone Castle, Westmeath, with free admission to the ancient structure’s visitor centre, guided tours, a fact-finding treasure hunt, a game of giant chess and a chance to meet the Easter Bunny and Alice in Wonderland too.
In Wexford, plenty of entertainment is on offer at the Cruinniú na Cásca Cabaret at Wexford Arts Centre. This family-friendly variety performance will showcase a vibrant mix of local music, spoken word talent and much more in the spirit of the day’s cultural celebration.
More events are being scheduled daily so be sure to check Cruinniú na Cásca for regular updates, new additions and other essential information.
Check out this health and safety guide to ensure everyone has a fun and safe day out this Easter.