Pictures: Lough Ree Monster Festival a huge success

Monster festival a huge success as crowds flock to Lanesboro over the weekend

Jessica Thompson

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Jessica Thompson

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jessica.thompson@longfordleader.ie

There was great excitement in Lanesboro over the weekend as people arrived in their droves to enjoy the Lough Ree Monster Festival.

The festival kicked off on Friday night with the arrival of the Lough Ree Monster, which was designed and built by Kevin Hanlon and certainly attracted attention from children and adults alike over the three days.

The weekend saw a huge amount of musical entertainment take to the stage in the Big Red Barn, with a range of home-grown talent wowing the crowds.

There was also a hugely popular family day on Sunday, with a number of kids' attractions including a gyroscope, bouncing castles and various other fun things to do - not to mention a number of stalls to interest parents and children alike.

“We covered all strands, really,” said Joe O'Brien, one of the festival's organisers.

“There was something in it for everybody. It was a marvellous weekend.

“The weather was kind to us. It rained but then it would dry up again,” he added.

“But it was dry for the arrival and the departure of the Lough Ree Monster, so that's the main thing.”

The music took place in the Big Red Barn, which was an indoor venue, meaning the showers of rain certainly didn't effect the music-lovers in the crowd.

The Lough Ree Monster itself sat on the River Shannon for the whole weekend, overseeing proceedings, and was given a fantastic send-off on Sunday night, with a fireworks display lighting up the sky as the monster drifted off home.

Its departure was followed by more fantastic music in the Big Red Barn.

This was the first Lough Ree Monster Festival to be held in about 20 years but, thanks to the success of this year's event, it may become a more regular fixture.

“That's something that'll be discussed in the coming weeks,” said Mr O'Brien.

“But I don't see why it couldn't be emulated next year.”