The Ballybunion Bealtaine Festival will be held on Sunday, 21st May, 2017 at 2pm at the Old Convent Hall on Convent Walk off Doon Road, Ballybunion. Thanks to grants from Kerry County Arts Council and Community Support Fund, the festival is free to all who attend as are the refreshments and dancing to the music of Dermot Murphy.

For those of you who do not know, Bealtaine is Gaelic for May Festival. The Celtic tradition was to hold the Bealtaine Festival half way between the Spring Equinox and Summer Soltice. It marked the beginning of Summer in the ancient Celtic calendar. Through this festival the Celts celebrated fertility, fire and abundance of the natural world around them.
Today, the celebration of creativity in older people is the focus of the Bealtaine season for many Irish Active Retirement Asssociations. Here in Ballybunion, we try to honor the Celtic tradition of Bealtaine through the arts of painting, writing, crafts, music and dance. This year will be our 11th celebration of Bealtaine and it is sure to be a fun day for all who attend.

Bealtaine this year will open with a welcome from our Chairperson, Pat Buckley, a drink and a chance to view the members’ paintings which will be on display. Then, Caroline Doyle from the HSE will open the event. Mai Langan, who headed up this year unique project, will present the booklet that was compiled in honor of Bealtaine 2017. Entitled Recipes & Reminiscences, it celebrates the members favorite foods and memories of what life was like growing up in Ireland, the U.K. or the U.S.A. in the 40‘s, 50’s or 60’s. Thanks to Kerry County Council’s generous funding, everyone attending will also go home with a copy of this unique booklet.

This festival is a chance to celebrate community. Please put the date on your calendar and plan to attend. Everyone is welcome.