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Thousands to descend on Portlaoise for annual heritage festival this weekend

Old Fort Quarter 2017

– Full line-up for Old Fort Quarter Festival revealed –

Thousands of attendees from across the country are expected to descend on Portlaoise this weekend for the Old Fort Quarter Festival, taking place from Friday 22nd to Sunday 24th June 2018.

Now in its third year, The Old Fort Quarter Festival celebrates the heritage of the Old Fort of Maryborough in Portlaoise.

Medieval heritage, two music stages, street theatre, a comic book convention and an artisan food market are among the highlights.  New for 2018, attendees at the three-day festival will get to enjoy an additional entertainment stage, along with a dedicated comedy stage.

Many of the events are free-to-attend and spaces will be filled on a first-come, first-served basis – so early attendance is advised. This year’s line-up features the following highlights:

  • Medieval heritage: archery, armoury, birds of prey, shield making, crafts, cookery and historic tours.
  • Music acts: Smash Hits; Roll With It – Ultimate Oasis Tribute; The Frank & Walters; Transmitter; The Valves; The Jury; and Silent Disco.
  • Comedy stage: Ashlee Bentley, John Sheehan, Greg Marx, Anthony Riordan, Cornelius Patrick O’ Sullivan, Eve Darcy, and Pauline Shanahan
  • Artisan food market: Bloom Restaurant Portlaoise, Sharon Shannon’s Garden of Vegan, La Merienda Mexican Street Food, Food Junkie wood-fired pizza and Rockfield Ice Cream
  • Street theatre: stilt walkers, jugglers, puppet shows, giant games, face painting.
  • Crinniú na nÓg: a wide range of free heritage workshops and performances for children and young people.
  • Celtic Comic Con: graphic novel and comic book market, gaming zone.
  • Heritage re-enactment displays.
  • Daily walking tours.

Speaking today, Chairman of the Old Fort Committee, Ivor O’Loughlin said: “Now in its third year, we’re all very excited for the annual Old Fort Quarter Festival, taking place on Main Street in Portlaoise this Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

“This year’s festival will be bigger and better than ever, with two music stages, a new dedicated comedy stage, plenty of history and heritage events and displays for all the family, a comic book convention and some of the very best in Irish, artisan foods.

“It looks like the warm weather is set to return, just in time for the Festival, so it’s the perfect way to while away some of the longest days of the year.

“I’d like to sincerely thank our sponsors and supporters. In particular, I would like to thank the members of the Old Fort Quarter committee, who have been working hard behind the scenes to make this festival happen.

“We’d encourage anyone with an interest in medieval heritage, music, comedy, theatre and a love for Irish food, to join us in Portlaoise for our annual celebration of the Old Fort of Maryborough.”

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