Get ready Athlone! The Shannon Festival kicks off next weekend

Longford Leader Reporter

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Longford Leader Reporter

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The countdown on, the line-up is confirmed, the excitement is building and the forecast is good! What more could you need for a great weekend of fun?

The Athlone Shannon Feastival next weekend (September 8 and 9) expects to attract thousands of people to Athlone to take part in and enjoy the action packed line up of activity, on and off river, all weekend.

The Radisson Blue Festival Marquee, located at the castle walls, is the hub of activity, hosting workshops, talks, demos and kids entertainment all weekend.

The Feastival’s official launch event takes place on Saturday afternoon at 4pm when the Sheraton chefs will be busy shucking oysters kindly sponsored by the Sheraton Athlone Hotel to accompany Guinness from Sean’s Bar and Jazz at Feastival HQ.

The Vikings are landing and will set up the Sheraton Viking Settlement at The Strand, where visitors can experience Viking life by exploring the medieval village and seeing weapon making, embroidery, medieval cooking and more!

On Saturday evening local chefs sharpen their knives and forks and wield their tongs for the Viking BBQ Cook-Off at 6pm, an event sure to satisfy the appetite.

Sunday is known for being a day for relaxation so why not treat yourself by visiting the Sirana Spa Wellness Area for some pampering and massage? Or for a bit more action watch the local crews as they battle it out to be crowned 'Champions of The Shannon' in the Leisure Boat Rowing Races.

Professional fly-boarders take centre stage at 4pm as they hover over the river performing a variety of amazing stunts and tricks.

The Flogas Demo Kitchen hosts a series of foodie talks, cooking demos and tasty treats all afternoon. And at 6pm Viking Mike casts off and sets sail for a Viking Whiskey Cruise hosted by Midlands Whiskey Experiences.

Cafes and Restaurants participating in the Feastival Food Trail all weekend include The Fatted Calf, Kin Khao, Thyme, Smoke BBQ, The Corner House Bistro, Fine Wine & Food Company, La Cucina Di Angelo, The Radisson Blu Hotel, Hodson Bay Hotel Sheraton Athlone Hotel and The Prince Bar with more to be announced.

Fashion puts its best foot forwards at The Feastival Fashion Trail. Burgess Department Store hosts a series of workshops from 11:30am on Saturday with  Kathryn Byrne of YOUR IMAGE MATTERS and Athlone Town Centre hosts a STYLE SQUAD event with Rebecca Rose Stylist and Tanya from My Little Love Stories Blog from 12 to 4pm.

Meander the Music Trail around Athlone’s pubs featuring sessions at Sean’s Bar, The Snug, The Castle Inn, Fiddler’s Bar, The Malt House, The Sheraton Athlone Hotel Bar, The Quayside Bar at The Radisson Blu Hotel, The Prince Bar and The Waterfront Bar in the Hodson Bay Hotel. 

The Artisan Food Village, open Saturday and Sunday, will showcase the best of locally produced food from producers including Kilbeggan Chocolate, Tara Jams, Wild Irish Foragers, KO Kombucha, Quarrymount Farm, Durrow Mills, Behan’s Fruit & Veg, Harvest Café, Radisson Blu Hotel, Prince of Wales Hotel and more.

 

Other highlights of the weekend include:

·         Heritage Boat Spectacle and Cruiser Flotilla

·         Whiskey walking tours, and tastings with Athlone Whiskey Tours

·         Performances by The Band of the 2nd Brigade and recitals by ‘Poetry in the Park’ at Athlone Castle

·         FREE Guided Tours at selected times at Athlone Castle and Luan Gallery

·         ‘Reflections’ A special Waterways Ireland Archive Exhibition at Abbey Road Artist Studio and Luan Gallery.

 

Athlone Chamber’s John Mc Grath said “There’s a palpable air of enthusiasm around in advance of the Feastival. And it’s great to see local businesses jumping on board and supporting the event in so many ways.

The business supporters pack has been well received with business around town proudly displaying their ‘Supporting Business’ stickers.

And it’s still not too late for even more people to get involved and help make it a great success.”

The Feastival is the Opening Act to the global World Canals Conference on September 10 to September 12, expected to attract over 400 delegates from all over the world to Athlone.

The Athlone Shannon Feastival is supported by Westmeath County Council. Roscommon County Council, Waterways Ireland and the Creative Ireland Fund. Major sponsors of the event include Sheraton Athlone Hotel, Radisson Blu Hotel, Viking Tours and Flogas.

 

For a full programme of events visithttp://www.athlone.ie/visit/athlone-shannon-feastival/

andhttps://www.facebook.com/shannonfeastivalathlone/

or follow @Ath_Feastival