Athenry Medieval Festival Memories, Christmas 1998

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Before the actual festival (13th – 16th Aug.) was, as usual, a busy time for all.

We had two brilliant workshops for children with Tina Animations (R.T.E.) and Macnas workshop on puppetry.  We ourselves were sewing, hammering, painting and moving props.  Some were practising their skills for the Car Treasure Hunt.  There is no truth at all in the rumour that one of our committee got lost for a few hours: The concerts and drama in the Castle were wonderfully although carrying a hundred chairs up and down the Castle stairs knocked some of the enthusiasm out of us: P.J. Molloy opened the festival and in fine style we enjoyed the Parade and the Sports Event.

Our pageant, written and produced by Cha Taylor was based on a local historical event and with a cast of hundreds it was to be as usual the highlight of our festival. Nine o’clock on Sunday the 16th the Pageant parade began from the Presentation College Gym. The rain begin to fall, it got heavier and heavier until it bucketed down in torrents.  Our intrepid actors and actresses carried on regardless.  Lighting and sound were affected and the loyal audience eventually had to let good sense prevail and leave the stands for dryer places.  The finale, the fireworks by Theatre of Fire, lifted our spirits.  What can one do about the weather? Drying of costumes was a mammoth task – paying our bills on even bigger task but with the good will and support of the whole community, we feel it was all worthwhile.

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About this record

Written by Teresa Ruane

Published here 18 Apr 2023 and originally published Christmas 1998

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