• Danny Joyce | Editor

Fáilte Ireland Launches Púca Festival Programme for Halloween 2022

Today, Tuesday 13th September, Minister for Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media Catherine Martin T.D. officially launches the Púca Festival Halloween 2022 programme with a multi-talented lineup announced today including The Academic, Imelda May, Gavin James, Sharon Shannon, Kíla and Seo Linn, joining the previously announced King Kong Company, Block Rockin’ Beats, Lisa Hannigan, Jerry Fish Electric Sideshow Cabaret, Blindboy, Joanne McNally, Neil Delamere, David O’Doherty, Jason Byrne and more.

Returning to Co. Meath from Friday 28th to Monday 31st October 2022 across festival hubs Trim and Athboy, Púca is an authentic, immersive and otherworldly festival that celebrates Ireland as the birthplace of Halloween.

Developed by Fáilte Ireland, in partnership with Meath County Council, to tell the origin story of Samhain or ‘Summer’s End’, Púca was devised to encourage more international visitors to visit Ireland during October and November, and to encourage domestic visitors to explore different regions of Ireland. Working in partnership with Irish artists, seanchaí storytellers, and the local community Púca will showcase the best in contemporary Irish music, spectacle, and performance, and is now in its third year.


Speaking at the programme launch in Dublin Castle, Minister for Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media, Catherine Martin T.D. said;


“As we emerge from the impact of COVID-19, we know the tourism and hospitality industry has a key part to play in Ireland’s economic recovery. Immersive festivals play an important role in delivering brilliant visitor experiences, giving domestic and overseas visitors a unique opportunity to experience the very best of our culture, people and places. Halloween is a globally recognised holiday and Fáilte Ireland’s Púca festival is an excellent opportunity to promote Ireland as the place where it all began. I am pleased to officially launch the programme for Púca 2022 which will encourage visitors from around Ireland and the world to visit Meath, stay, explore and celebrate our ancient Samhain traditions.”


Orla Carroll, Director of Product Development in Fáilte Ireland added:


“Festivals are crucial to the tourism sector, motivating over 200,000 overseas visitors to come to Ireland and contributing €108m to the economy every year. Púca Festival aims to position Ireland internationally as the home of Halloween and will build on existing work already taking place in Ireland’s Ancient East to tell the region’s ancient story. Púca’s distinctive programme of events has something for everyone and we are looking forward to seeing it being brought to life in October. Working in partnership with Meath County Council, Fáilte Ireland is committed to developing Púca into a world-class festival that positions Ireland as the home of Halloween internationally over the next number of years.”

In addition to the music and comedy line-up, other programme details have been confirmed and include:


• The festival ceremonies officially commence with the Arrival of the Spirits Samhain Procession on Saturday, 29th October. Join in the Samhain Procession as it weaves its way through the eerie dark streets of Trim, making its way to the magical Trim Castle where the entertainment continues. This must-see illuminated procession will be a sight to behold with large-scale processional pieces, music, fire, and performances not to be missed. Spectators are invited to celebrate the Samhain Spirits and create their own masks, with dressing up highly encouraged.


• The Púca Big Top Stage in Trim will host high-profile headline acts each night including, Imelda May, Gavin James, The Academic, King Kong Company and Block Rockin Beats, Lisa Hannigan and Cathy Davey, and many more.


• Comedy stages are set to host a stellar line up of comedy favourites such as David O’Doherty, Joanne McNally, Neil Delamere and Jason Byrne.


• The Morrigan Stage at Trim Castle Hotel will feature the Blindboy Live Podcast Show, Jerry Fish Electric Sideshow, Davina Devine – The Queens of Halloween Spooktacular with Mother DJs, and a late-night party at the Púca Festival Club.


• The Darnley Lodge Hotel Athboy will host live performances from The High Kings and the Dublin City Ramblers – 50th Anniversary Celebration Tour


• At Trim Castle, the Boann Stage will feature free ticketed events with the talented Sharon Shannon, Seo Linn, and much more.


• Driven by a passion for folklore and mythology, Candlelit Tales at the Morrigan Stage in Trim Castle Hotel will be breathing life into old stories, for young and old, in keeping with Ireland’s wonderful storytelling heritage.


• Food lovers will rejoice at the Jack O’Lantern Harvest Market taking place in Trim Castle across the weekend. Attendees can expect to discover a wonderful showcase of local producers offering up tasty treats and creepy crafts that are sure to satisfy Halloween appetites.


• On the Fairgreen in Athboy, an all-ages Irish-themed Celtic Voyage Circus will delight families, while after dark the Samhain Circus celebrates the creme de la creme of creepy cabaret, hair-raising high wire acts and sideshow elements, fire performances, and much more.


• The Fairgreen in Athboy and . will host this year's celebration of Samhain, with a living historical village, walking tours, processions and spectacle, and exciting surprises.


• The Irish language is celebrated within the festival programme, and a wonderful array of local traditional Irish musicians will be playing throughout the weekend.


Cartoon Saloon, 7-time Academy, Golden Globe, BAFTA, and Emmy nominated animated studio will create spectacular projections at Púca Festival to tell the story of Ireland as the original birthplace of Halloween which began as Samhain over 2000 years ago.


• Throughout the weekend a variety of free ticketed events will take place including Halloween fun, games, and treasure hunts across Trim and Athboy.


Some programme highlights attendees can expect from Púca include:


ATHBOY


· Celtic Voyage Circus

Friday 28th – 31st October, 1.30pm, 4.30pm, 7pm, Fairgreen Athboy. Tickets €10 Plus Booking Fee.


· Dublin City Ramblers 50th Anniversary Tour

Friday 28th October, 8pm, Darnley Lodge Hotel. Tickets €15 Plus Booking Fee.


· The High Kings

Saturday 29th October, 8pm, Darnley Lodge Hotel. Tickets €29 Plus Booking Fee.


· Kíla

Monday 31st October, time and location to be confirmed.



TRIM


· Lisa Hannigan & Cathy Davey

Friday 28th October, 8pm, Fear Dearg Stage. Tickets €25 Plus Booking Fee.


· Imelda May

Friday 28th October, 8pm, Big Top Púca Stage. Tickets €37.50 Plus Booking Fee.


· Jack O’Lanterns Food & Craft Markets (FREE EVENT)

Friday 28th - Monday 31st October, Trim Castle. Free to join.


· Haunted Trim Walking Tours

Friday 28th - Monday 31st October, 12.30pm, 3pm and 6pm, Trim Town. Tickets €9 Plus Booking Fee.


· Opening Procession - The Arrival of The Spirits (FREE EVENT)

 Saturday 29th October, 6.30pm, Jonathan Swift Street, Trim Town. Free to join.


· Seo Linn (FREE EVENT)

Saturday 29th October, 4.45pm, Boann Stage at Trim Castle.


· The Academic

Saturday 29th October, Big Top Púca Stage. Tickets on sale 10am Wednesday, 14th September.


· Storytelling with Candlelit Tales

Sunday 30th – Monday 31st October, 2pm, Morrigan Stage at Trim Castle Hotel. Tickets €5 Plus Booking Fee


· The Jerry Fish Electric Sideshow ‘Cabaret’

Saturday 29th October, 8pm, Trim Castle Hotel. Tickets €25 Plus Booking Fee.


· Gavin James

Sunday 30th October, 8pm, Púca Big Top Stage. Tickets €35.00 Plus Booking Fee.


· Blindboy Live Podcast

Sunday 30th October, 8pm, Morrigan Stage at Trim Castle Hotel. Tickets €26.50 Plus Booking Fee.


· Sharon Shannon (FREE EVENT)

Sunday 30th October, 4.30pm, Boann Stage, Trim Castle.


· Joanne McNally

Monday 31st October, 8pm, Knightsbrook Hotel. Tickets €27.50 Plus Booking Fee


· The Hidden Station – Live Variety Podcast (FREE EVENT)

Monday 31st October, 6pm, Morrigan Stage at Trim Castle Hotel. Free Ticketed Event.


· Block Rockin’ Beats, King Kong Company and HamsandwicH

Monday 31st October, 7.30pm, Big Top Púca Stage. Tickets €30 Plus Booking Fee.


Tickets are on sale now at Pucafestival.com and Ticketmaster.ie. Events are individually priced.


Slán go fóill.