The four-day weekend isn’t the only aspect of St. Patrick’s Day worth looking forward to this year as St. Patrick’s Festival rolls into the city from March 16-20. This year there will be a dedicated festival quarter in the National Museum of Ireland, Collins Barracks, hosting events from 12 noon until 6 pm. You can expect comedy, music, dancing and delicious food.
The parade will happen on March 17, winding from Parnell Square to St. Stephen’s Green from 12 noon until 2 pm. Marching bands from countries including the US and Germany will be participating this year.
You can kick it all off with some amazing céilí dances and music on the main stage at the festival on Thursday, then talented Irish speakers, writers, comedians and singers will take to the stage. Damian Clark, Neil Delamere, Julie Jay and Grace Mulvey will also have the audience roaring with laughter.
At 7.30 pm you can watch Mo Cultivation, a celebration of urban music, including soul, R’n’B and hiphop. You can also view an exhibition at the National Museum of Ireland on Irish history, politics, art and culture from 1900 onwards and, of course, visit the funfair!
What we’re really looking forward to on Friday (aside from the parade) is the Actual Reality Arcade. It opens at 12 noon and features ten, huge playable retro games. There are no screens, just tangible experiences!
You can also attend a talk on how The Cranberries (one of the best bands ever) made it big in the US, see Damian Dempsey perform and attend the Breathe Festival. This festival combines yoga and wellness with concern for the environment and it’s a must for any like-minded Dubliners.
Then, at 7 pm, you can wind down even further with A ‘Snakey’ Paradise Cabaret Special. This definitely isn’t the kind of cabaret you might have watched on holiday as a child. It’s far more interesting.
Breathe Festival, the Actual Reality Arcade and lots of the other events continue into the weekend. You can also watch a group of incredibly talented harp players perform on what is an iconic symbol of Ireland.
The Irish Food Writing Awards will host some fantastic chefs and writers, which is sure to get your tummy rumbling. Plus, there will be tons of fantastic talks on all things Irish and music from Mango x Mathman.
On Sunday you can enjoy a discussion about the magazine Totally Dublin and watch a couple of fantastic film screenings in the Palatine Room. The first follows singer Macdara Yeates as she meets with the daughter of Yann Fouréré to discuss Breton music and regionalism, and you can catch it at 2 pm. Then, at 4.30 pm, you can watch Macdara Yeates again as she travels to Dublin and Scotland discussing the influence of Hamish Henderson’s writings on folk singer Dominic Behan.
There’s a lot to see and do at the St. Patrick’s Day festival this year! Not able to make it? Don’t worry because you can watch it all online with SPFTV! Visit the website to read about the full lineup of events and guests this year.