Gathering 
inspires 
‘Return of the Rossies’

The Co Roscommon town of Boyle will come alive at the end of May when it hosts a 10-day festival to coincide with The Gathering. The ‘Return of the Rossies’ is the county’s flagship gathering event, and it has been organised in association with Roscommon Co Council.

The Co Roscommon town of Boyle will come alive at the end of May when it hosts a 10-day festival to coincide with The Gathering. The ‘Return of the Rossies’ is the county’s flagship gathering event, and it has been organised in association with Roscommon Co Council.

The line-up includes Tommy Fleming and orchestra in a show that has won him critical acclaim in both Ireland and the UK over the past year. Taking place in the walled gardens of Lough Key Forest Park on Saturday, May 25, his appearance will be followed by an extraordinary fireworks display, which is sure to entertain young and old.

Another music act sure to draw crowds is Irish rock band Ham Sandwich. The group – who will appear at Slane Castle later this summer when they support Bon Jovi – will take to the stage in Lough Key on Sunday, May 26.

Known for their dynamic live performances, which involve balloons and confetti, along with the band’s unique style of crowd interaction, the band have travelled far and wide, appearing at some of Europe’s top festivals.

The skies around the county will be filled with hot air balloons during the festival as enthusiasts from across the globe gather in Boyle with their craft, 20 years on from their last visit.

Their visit coincides with a planned international reunion of Roscommon societies, Lough Key’s participation in the BioBlitz family day, a series of military events and performances celebrating The Connaught Rangers, and the launch of Boyle 400.

Throughout the week, events continue with Boyle Musical Society’s 30th anniversary celebrations, while Boyle Arts Festival will bring music and film to the town. There will also be a rambling bus tour to Roscommon’s four historic houses, angling events, Arigna Mines family day, walks, a farmers’ market and a trail of live music in pubs throughout the town.