The inaugural Vandeleur Festival Kilrush will take place on the weekend of Friday 21st to Sunday 23rd July and will feature a series of events, including a performance by the Kilfenora Céilí Band and a Fashion Show by the Celia Holman Lee Agency.
The three-day festival gets underway at the Vandeleur Walled Garden and Visitor Centre on Friday 21st July with free admission being provided to an art exhibition by Kilrush-based Ailish Malone, whose self-taught abstract landscapes are inspired by the West Clare landscape, in particular the Shannon Estuary and the Atlantic Ocean. The popular visitor attraction will also host a musical performance by Teresa Carrig who will be launching her new CD – ‘Roots of Love’.
From 8.00pm to 10.00pm in Frances Street in Kilrush town centre, there will be live music by The Alvin Purple Experience and a Fire Show by Rogu, featuring three of Ireland’s greatest contemporary circus performers.
One of Ireland’s most enduring and famous céilí bands will take to the stage in a specially erected marquee located within the newly renovated courtyard at the Vandeleur Walled Garden and Visitor Centre on Saturday 22nd July at 7.30pm. The Kilfenora Céilí Band will be supported by popular West Clare singer/songwriter PJ Murrihy.
The deluxe, high street, and boutique designs from some of the best local retailers in Kilrush and surrounding areas will be showcased on Sunday 23rd July from 7.00pm when The Holman Lee Agency hosts a Fashion Show at Vandeleur Walled Garden and Visitor Centre. The Fashion Show will be the concluding event of the festival.
Cllr Joe Cooney, Cathaoirleach of Clare County Council, said: “Vandeleur Festival Kilrush is a valuable addition to County Clare’s events calendar and will shine a spotlight on the arts and culture community in West Clare. The event will also deliver benefits for the local economy and will help to promote the West Clare capital town as a vibrant place to visit.”
Pat Dowling, Chief Executive of Clare County Council, commented: “Working with the local community, the Vandeleur Walled Gardens and Visitor Centre has developed an event that it is hoped will become an annual feature on the local and national festivals calendar. Clare County Council is committed to investing in the future development of the visitor attraction, which is an important commercial and cultural centre for the wider benefit of Kilrush.”
Cllr Ian Lynch, Cathaoirleach of the West Clare Municipal District added: “Vandeleur Festival Kilrush is a real win for the people of Kilrush and the surrounding area, who now have a fantastic festival right on their doorstep,” explained
He continued: “Everyone in the town is looking forward to a massive weekend of festivities. I am delighted to be able to directly support the event organisers and look forward to welcoming people from all over Clare and beyond to the town next week. It will be particularly exciting to see the world famous Kilfenora Céilí Band perform in the recently upgraded courtyard at the Vandeleur Walled Garden and Visitor Centre and as this event will help to further increase awareness of this valuable heritage tourism product.”
Noel Kilkenny, Chairperson of Kilrush Amenity Trust, stated: “We are delighted to support the programme of events that has been lined up for next week as it contains something for everybody with performances and activities that can be enjoyed by people of all ages. Creating a community-focused attraction is a key priority for the Vandeleur Walled Garden and Visitor Centre, and it is wonderful to have received such positive support from the wider community for this festival.”
Colette Costello, Head of Operations, Vandeleur Walled Garden and Visitor Centre, confirmed that a park and ride service will operate every fifteen minutes between Kilrush town centre and the Vandeleur Walled Garden and Visitor Centre from 6pm on Saturday and Sunday.
She explained: “People attending the event are encouraged to park in town and walk through the Turret Lane access to the centre which will be sign posted, alternatively we will be providing a park and ride service which will operate every 15 mins from outside Patrick Bourke’s menswear to the Vandeleur Walled Garden and Visitor Centre to facilitate all visitors to the Saturday and Sunday evening events. Visitors with limited mobility are welcome to park in the car park closest to the centre.”
The Fashion Show and Kilfenora Céilí Band performance are ticketed events. Further information on the Vandeleur Festival Kilrush is available here.