Lauching Festival Cluain Meala Marie McMahon (curator of the county museum) and Cllr Catherine Carey, District Mayor
Clonmel promises to be full of festival cheer in a few weeks time with the return of Festival Cluain Meala from August 5th-13th.
The town will be be transformed with a cycling criterium, gigs, busking and medieval activity, all focusing on many free events.
The successful collaboration of the three major festivals staged in Clonmel in August – the Medieval Town Walls Festival, the Suir Valley 3 Day Cycling event and the Clonmel Busking Festival - celebrate Clonmel’s rich tapestry of culture, sport and music.
Festival Cluain Meala opens on Saturday, 5th August, with the Suir Valley 3 Day International Cycle Race. Stages one, two and four start between 11am and 1pm from Kickham Barracks, Clonmel, with stage one finishing in the centre of Cahir on Saturday, 5th August at 3.45pm.
Stage three, the Clonmel Criterium takes place on Sunday, 6th August between 6– 7pm, starting and finishing in O’Connell Street. The riders will negotiate five laps of a 1.7km circuit for 45 minutes. This year’s circuit is more technically challenging, and will be seriously fast.
Stage four on Monday, 7th August starts at 11am from Kickham Barracks and finishes at the top of the Nire.
The Clonmel Busking Festival launches at Hotel Minella on Thursday, 10th August at 7.30pm, with the premiere of a short film ‘William Crotty - The Highway Man’, along with the launch of a graphic novel by artist Eamon Cowan.
There will be a Strictly Come Dancing performance in aid of Our Lady's Children's Hospital in Crumlin, with performances by AOK-Dance (Ballet, Lyrical and Contemporary Ballet), Synergy Dance Club (Hip Hop), Kool School (Gymnastics) and more musical acts. All are welcome.
Tickets at €10 each may be purchased at the Clonmel Tourist Office, beside The Main Guard.
Friday, 11th August kicks off with busking on the streets and under the arches of the Main Guard. Also from 12 noon until 3pm Western Studio (St Luke's Hospital), Western Road, will host an Open House full of art, music, food and a tour around Western Studio.
Saturday, 12th August features the Busking Competition, with a first prize of €1,000; free IW Wrestling and choirs singing under the Main Guard.
On Sunday, 13th August the Family Fun Day Extravaganza at Denis Burke Park will feature live music, a pop-up Medieval Village, Free Wrestling, Water Balling, Bouncy Castles and much more.
Last year between 8,000-10,000 people were estimated to have visited the Family Fun Day at some stage, making it one of the most successful community events in the town in recent times.
Over 120 gigs will be performed over the weekend in pubs across Clonmel. Join the music trail of Rock, Indie, Country, Traditional and much, much more.
Check out the full listing on www.clonmelbuskingfestival.com and follow the festival on Facebook at clonmelbuskingfestival and festivalcluainmeala. Admission is free to all music gigs, with donations welcome for Our Lady's Children’s Hospital in Crumlin.
The Medieval Inn Trail returns on Friday, 11th August with a costumed tour of local inns and plenty of merriment along the way. Register your interest at the Tipperary County Museum at 076-1065252, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
Costumes will be available for hire or you can bring your own, the admission is €10. Everyone will meet at the County Museum, Mick Delahunty Square, Clonmel from 6pm and will hit the trail at 7pm sharp.
On Sunday, 13th August, Denis Burke Park will be transformed into a medieval village by Montague demonstrating the craft, cooking and lifestyle of the times, with lots of free medieval fun including a farrier, archery, a combat school, a falconry and coin minting. There will also be a ‘Big Dig’ in the Park, along with Buí Bolg Medieval Street Entertainers and Uncle Mike's Pet Show. Banna Chluain Meala will also perform.
South Tipperary Arts Centre will be hosting a variety of projects to coordinate with Festival Cluain Meala. Further details are available in the brochure.
Thanks are extended to the festival's many supporters including Tipperary County Council, the Heritage Council, the National Walled Towns Network, Bulmers and Hotel Minella, as well as the many volunteers who have given their time so selflessly to make the event a success.