Skibbereen’s own River Day will be held on Wednesday 30th July. The River Day will be held in celebration of one of Skibbereen’s dearest treasures, the Ilen River. The day will begin with a trip to the Fastnet, leaving from the Ilen River. Attendees will be joined by Ger Butler, one of Ireland’s last lightkeepers. Now an attendant at the Galley Head Lighthouse, Butler was previously an assistant keeper at the Fastnet, Bull Rock, The Old Head of Kinsale and Mizen Head Lighthouse. The Lightkeeper was an attendant at the Fastnet during the tragic 1979 Fastnet Yacht Race, which resulted in the loss of 18 lives.
A kayaking trip will be available for those wanting to see Skibbereen from a different view, and a river dance will take place at the Steam Mill Quay. Skibbereen musicians from Comhaltas Óg will be performing on a boat as they travel through the town, and will stop at the Quay at 7pm to provide music for the dance. Later at 9pm, a Séisiún will be held in the West Cork Hotel. The Séisiún will give a real taste of Irish traditions, providing Irish song, dance and stories.
Mark Boyden and Stephanie O’ Toole will be presenting ‘Streamscape Ilen’. ‘Streamscape Ilen’ will be a presentation on the innovative Streamscapes Ilen Enviromental Education Project. Those who attend will learn about Biodiversity and Socio-economics benefits of a healthy river, and will get the chance to be involved in an open discussion afterwards.
Finally, the river will be a source of inspiration for participants of Toma McCullim’s outdoor painting workshop, on Wednesday 30th, so people can paint their version of the Ilen River.
For more information please check out the Skibbereen Arts Festival website at www.skibbereenartsfestival.com, or for ticket information please phone 087 1260327.