6th July 2015

Abhainn Rí 2015 has finally come to a close and what a successful festival it was this year! It was fantastic to see Callan alive and buzzing during the 10 days. We hope you had time to enjoy some of the events on offer. A massive thank you to everyone who helped to transform Bridge Street and to all the volunteers and performers who contributed to making our festival a very special experience – What wonderful community spirit!

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29th June 2015

Abhainn Rí Festival 2015 is truly underway! Since last Friday evening we have seen the launch of four visual arts exhibitions, enjoyed a night of poetry and traditional music and partaken in a 50 person strong community drum circle. This years Annual field day was particularly successful as we saw crowds drawing to Abbey Meadow for a day immersed in varied and fun filled games and activities for all the family. To round off the day, The Elemental Session, a battle of the bands, showcased a line up of local  musical talent with special guest Fionn Gardner. Fennelly’s Late Session has kept us entertained into the night with music by Áine Duffy on Saturday night and Indian Exotica on Sunday night, serving up delicious food and music to accompany.
We have plenty more in store this coming week from pop up yoga at the Friary, to metal raising demonstrations on Bridge Street. Our weekday lunchtime heritage walks always draw a crowd. Come and join a poetry and Persian food night or share your poems, jokes or songs at the Open Mic session. Callan Pictorial Past will bring you on a visual tour of Callan’s history.
Tickets are selling fast for The International Dinner Dance this coming Friday. Drop by the box office on Green Street to pick up your ticket. Its sure to be a great night of delicious culinary delights from around the world and entertainment by Callan’s own Highway Men.
There are free workshops galore with Bridge Street Make, exploring shop facades and continuing the painting on the buildings of Bridge Street. Younger audiences have a chance to take part in a day long graffiti workshop and community drumming circles will happen throughout the week. Meadows Bloom will offer day long guidance in creating willow land art.
Our free festival gig, which will take place on Saturday 4th July at Abbey Meadow car park will be hosted by the Caravan Club Extravaganza with special guests Kojak, Amber and the Little Bear and Tullara Connors an Australian percussion guitarist singer/songwriter. The event will coincide with KCAT Courtyard Tapas Bar serving tasty snacks into the night. Everyone welcome! Fennellys will continue to host its Late Sessions serving tasty grub and sensational sounds.
Our festival winds down on Sunday 5th July. The Abbey Meadow will host The Vagabond, Monkeyshine Theatre’s wandering venue. Monkeyshine will perform a number of interactive storytelling performances throughout the day and even invites us to bring a picnic to Abbey Meadow.This is followed by Children at Play on Bridge Street where street games, food stalls, chats and drumming will bring us into the evening.
We have even more to offer at Abhainn Rí 2015. You will find our full timetable of events here
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21st June 2015
The Abhainn Rí Festival, is a unique community festival that showcases the diverse and exciting cultural and community life of the small town of Callan. Now in it’s sixth year, the eclectic festival’s ten day programme, running from Friday June 26th to Sunday July 5th, is bursting with visual art, music, theatre, heritage, inclusion, street theatre, architecture and food events. The real star of the Abhainn Rí Festival is the town itself and the programme highlights forgotten and overlooked corners of this handsome town,  such as Bridge Street, The Abbey Meadow, The Workhouse, Fennellys,  an old agricultural co-operative, and the streets of the town itself. Outdoors:
The annual Field Day will make another appearance this year and will take place in Abbey Meadow on 28th of June. This fun day out for all the family will include a vintage car display, vintage tractor run, dog show, The Great Callan Duck Race, bouncy castle, bungee trampoline, wheel of fortune, food stalls and much much more. The field day will coinside with a special event The Elemental Session, a music event for all gae groups, begins as the field day winds down. On Sunday 5th of July Children at Play will be in full swing on Bridge Street Lower and will include street games and food stalls. Abhainn Rí 2015 will host a number of outdoor workshops throughout the duration of the festival including grafetti, yoga and willow art to name a few.Food:
On the menu this year, The International Dinner and Dance which will take place at the Parish Hall  on Friday 3rd of July will serve a variety of delicious European and Persian cuisine. Bring your own wine and dance the night away to the tunes of Callan’s own Highway Men. Highlights also include the Farmers Market and Food Fair. The 4th of July Food and Games celebration will include hot dogs, pie eating competition, American fancy dress, rodeo bulls, line dancing and much more! In conjunction with the Festival Gig, Festival Courtyard Tapas Bar will be serving up tasty nibbles from KCAT’s courtyard.

Spoken word:
Take a trip down memory lane with Callan’s Pictorial Past Evening, enjoy an evening of poetry with the Poetry Reading and Persian Food event or just sit back and have a laugh at Comedy Night. Enjoy the very best Callan has to offer and explore the deepest recesses of verbal communication in all it’s applications with this year’s Open Mic Spoken Word evening.

Theatre:
This June at Abhainn Rí Festival 2015, The Bridge Street Project, an inclusive theatre and architecture project, is taking over houses, shops, the street and our imaginations. The project will rediscover the possibilities of our town centres, through a collective re-imagining of Bridge Street as a public space with a civic future. Across Ireland the lights are going out in our rural town centres. The Bridge Street Project will culminate in Bridge Street Will Be, an innovative site specific contemporary theatre performance that will take place on the streetscape and interiors of overlooked buildings on Upper Bridge Street. This is a unique, choose-your-own-adventure, inclusive theatrical experience where the audience decides the future of Bridge Street. The performance takes place on Bridge Street and runs every night from Tuesday 30th of June to Saturday 4th of July. Other highlights include Everybody Needs A Little Magic taking place Friday the 3rd of July in the Workhouse Chapel, whislt Monkeyshine Theatre will be bringing their wandering venue, The Vagabond, to Abbey Meadow on Sunday 5th of July where they will be holding a number of storytelling performances and workshops.

Visual art:
From Saturday 27th June until Sunday 5th of July Still, We Work (Sarah Browne, Vagabond Reviews, Mirrian O,Connor, Anne Tallentine), the touring exhibtion from the National Womens Council of Ireland will be showcased in the newly developed Callan Workhouse Union space. This exhibition considers contemporary representations of women and work, and produces new connections amongst artists, activists and audiences. It is a unique opportunity for artists and women to come together and examine issues around women and work today. On the Bright Side, a retrospective exhibtion by KCAT Studio Artist, Andrew Pike will take place in KCAT’s Art and study Centre . This retrospective exhibition presents an extensive and broad selection of his work made since 1999, including sketches for the 2006 Big River Parade, self-portraits, animations, and commissions highlighting his ongoing dedication to the artistic process. Breda Lynch, a Kilkenny born artist, based in Limerick, presents an exhibtion comprising of multi-disciplinary elements that display her ongoing interest and research into identity, the double, and dialogues from the peripheral of history. An exhibition of three local photographers capturing moments in time through nature, portraits and landsacpes will be be on display in L’Arche Cafe fromTuesday 30th to Friday the 4th July.

Music:
This year Callan will be alive with the sound of music with a wide variety of free events ranging from a trad-session in Hourigans Bar on opening night to The Elemental Session taking place in the Abbey Meadow on the 28th of June, hosts a fine mix of local and national artists of all genres. This year’s festival is sure to have something for everyone, culminating in The Festival Gig on Saturday 4th July at Abbey Meadow car park. This is Callan’s 6th annual Abhainn rí Festival of participation and inclusion. We have a full varied programme of exciting events and activities to share with you. Join in on the fun, educational and inspiring workshops on offer. Learn new skills and meet new people. We hope you come along and be apart of something spectacular!

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15th June 2015

Callan Abhainn Ri Festival 2015 is almost here! This year’s festival opens on the evening of Friday 26th June with the launch of visual arts exhibition Still, we work at the newly developed Callan Workhouse Union, followed by the Kilbride Cemetery Mass. That night, join us for a poetry and traditional music seisúin in Hourigans on Bridge Street. Highlights of this year’s festival: The Festival Field Day at Abbey Meadow promises to be day filled with fun and exciting activities for everyone in the family, from vintage car display, bungee trampoline, dog show, 7-aside camoige to the great callan duck race. The International Dinner and Dance will be  serving up delicious cuisine from all over the world. Bring your own wine and dance into the night to the music of The Highway Men. The comedy night at Carrolls Bar promises to be the funniest night of the year, with both local comedians and guest John Colleary (The Panel, The Savage Eye) ready to tickle our funny bones and drive us to hysterics.
The hugely exciting “Bridge Street will be” performance will portray the history and potential of Bridge Street in a unique interactive theatre experience. Our local Seamus Kelly will be exhibiting his limestone carvings at the Old Mill whilst L’arce café will host an exhibition from three local talents in photography. Every lunchtime from 1pm-2pm there will be heritage walks exploring the history of Callan and it’s environs. We also have many free workshops available for all tastes and ages.
Please find our full programme of events in a shop near you or click here
To book tickets for any of our events or to reserve a place for any of our free workshops please call 085 281 0707.
We are always appreciative of all the help we receive each year in the running of our community festival. If you would like to volunteer at this year’s Abhainn Rí Festival please contact us on info@abhainnrifestival.com
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10th June 2015

We have a full and varied programme of exciting events and activities to share with you. Join in the fun, educational and inspiring workshops – learn new skills in architecture and graffiti, attend a pop up yoga class, share your talents at the open mic spoken word evening or come with us on a lunchtime heritage walk. The past and future of Bridge Street is explored through the bold participatory theatre experience Bridge Street Will Be, performed by a community cast of over 70 actors from our town. We’re delighted to host the National Women’s Council of Ireland’s touring exhibition STILL, WE WORK, exhibited in the newly developed Callan Workhouse Union space. The beautiful Abbey Meadow will be brought alive with a number of outdoor events – pop by our lively Family Field Day,  make sure you catch the inaugural Great Callan Duck Race and drop into one of Monkeyshine Theatre’s workshops as they set up The Vagabond camp. This year’s festival is a chance to see the work of artists and crafts people from Callan and beyond with exhibitions popping up in a number of unexpected spaces around the town. For those who love dancing and food the International Cuisine Dinner & Dance is not to be missed. We’re delighted that John Colleary is a special guest for the Comedy Night. The diversity of our town is the focus on this year’s Thomas Hunter Inclusion Summer School and we’re particularly excited to host a free outdoor gig under the stars in the atmospheric Abbey Meadow car park. We would like to thank all those who have contributed their creativity and time to making this festival possible. It’s been a great experience putting the programme together – we hope you enjoy.

Please find our full programme here

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3rd June 2015

Abhainn Rí 2015 is proud to present a strong and varied Visual Arts trail at this year’s festival. Amongst others, we will be hosting Still, We Work, a project initiated by the National Women’s Council of Ireland and On The Bright Side, a retrospective exhibition of work by Andrew Pike. This year’s Abhainn Rí lives up to its reputation of being a festival of inclusion and participation, offering an array of free workshops to people of all ages and abilities. Come and try your hand at making pallet garden furniture, decorate a local street wall with newly learned graffiti skills, bring your little one to a children’s yoga class or join a day long willow workshop in the Abbey Meadow.

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27th May 2015

Our hard working Abhainn Ri festival committee has been organising and compiling a huge array of events for your entertainment. Last week our programme was finalised and this week it goes to print! Expect to see a copy on our website and in local shops and establishments in the weeks ahead! From Duck races to poetry, heritage walks to music, workshops and exhibitions, there is plenty to keep you occupied from the 26th June to the 5th July.

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May 19th 2015

Abhainn Rí 2015 has confirmed its date for this year’s comedy night. Come join us in Carrolls Bar at 9pm on Monday June 29th for giggles and hilarity with local comedians and surprise guests! Admission is €7 and includes tasty finger food. Contact us on info@abhainnrifestival.com for further information and to buy tickets.

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May 11th 2015

7 weeks and counting….Abhainn Rí 2015 will be well underway. This years festival will see enormous diversity in activities and events over the 10 day festival period. Enjoy a pop up yoga class, a fun cycle tour of Callan, an evening of spoken word, a heritage walk, and storytelling for young and old at the Vagabond wandering venue, and more.

Once again, if you have any questions or want to get involved in this year’s festival, please contact us on info@abhainnrifestival.com

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May 5th 2015

In less than 8 weeks Abhainn Rí Festival 2015 will be here! The festival committee is currently working on an exciting programme of events and have already finalised some fun and inspiring activities suited for all ages and tastes.  

To mention a few, the Family Field Day will take place at Abbey Meadow on Sunday 28th June, a night of food and entertainment will be enjoyed by all at the International Dinner Dance at the Parish Hall on Friday 3rd July and a solo show by Andrew Pike, KCAT studio artist will be held at KCAT during the festival.

Abhainn Rí 2015 will also offer an array of fun and educational workshops that will cater for all age groups and abilities in the run up to and during the festival itself. These will be announced over the coming weeks.

If you have any questions or want to get involved in this year’s festival, please contact us on info@abhainnrifestival.com

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April 22nd 2015

The weather is glorious! The sun is shining! Its a perfect time to be inspired. Send us your creative thoughts and ideas for Abhainn Rí Festival 2015 by this Friday. We so look forward to hearing from you!

Download festival ‘Call for Ideas’ here.

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April 20th 2015

The International Dinner Dance will be taking place on Friday 3rd July in Callan Parish Hall. A great night promised including delicious 3 course meal , BYO and music by The Highwaymen. Tickets €20

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March 31st 2015

The Abhainn Rí Festival is seeking ideas for our 2015 programme. Download festival ‘Call for Ideas’ hereDeadline for submissions: Friday 24th of April 2015, 5.30pm

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