Queen’s GAA Festival in Belfast is now in full swing and organisers are encouraging people to make the most of their Festival experience by enjoying the entertainment off the pitch.
With thousands of visitors due to flock to Belfast over the remaining three weekends of the Festival, the Festival programme extends off the pitch as Queen’s Students’ Union opens its doors to many post match events, allowing players and supporters alike to enjoy various social events.
The Festival continues on February 20 – 22 with Gaelic Football’s Irish Daily Mail Sigerson Cup, Hurling’s Irish Daily Mail Fitzgibbon Cup on February 27 – March 1 and Ladies Football’s O’Connor Cup on March 21 – 22 all taking place at Queen’s Upper Malone facilities.
A welcome highlight to the programme includes the five-piece folk and traditional Belfast-based band The Rapparees, who will take to the stage of the Student’s Union this Friday, February 21, as part of the much anticipated Irish Daily Mail Sigerson Weekend.
The local band is set to raise the roof, described as one of the most exciting and engaging bands to burst onto the Irish traditional music scene in decades, they have built a strong student following over the years since they attended university in Belfast.
The fun continues as much loved local comedians Colin Murphy, Tim McGarry and Jake O’Kane take to the stage on February 27 for the Festival Comedy Night, as they guarantee the Irish Daily Mail Fitzgibbon Weekend gets off to a side-splitting start.
Other events taking place include team celebration evenings as well as community initiatives supported by the Department for Culture, Arts and Leisure, Belfast City Council and the Ulster GAA Council, including a Community Health Awareness Forum; Sporting Skills Experience; the official launch of Seachtain na Gaeilge; an AIL Rugby fixture between Queen’s University and University College Cork and a Female Youth Participation Workshops.
A limited edition official Festival jersey has also been designed to offer a lasting memory of this unique Festival. Players, supporters and GAA fans can pick up their merchandise online at www.gaaFestival.com, at Queen’s Physical Education Centre or over the weekends at Upper Malone.
Chair of the Organisation Committee, John Devaney spoke of the social aspect of the Festival, “Queen’s University is delighted to set the precedent by hosting all four major higher education Gaelic Games tournaments within one Festival. To ensure we can offer a balanced experience, however, we feel it’s important to host post match events so players can meet fellow competitors in a social aspect.
“The full Festival programme will ensure there is something that everyone can enjoy and we hope that players and supporters alike will come away having made the most of their time spent at the Festival and gained a full and enjoyable experience,” he concluded.
For further information on Queen’s GAA Festival and to purchase an official Festival jersey please visit www.gaaFestival.com