THE communities of West Cork are coming together in Bantry on October 9th and 10th for the West Cork Feel Good Festival that features a wide variety of free events, and a chain of ribbons with public involvement.
Cork Sports Partnership, the HSE, Bantry Chamber and a range of community and voluntary organisations have joined with transition year and primary schools students for the festival, which promotes health and well-being.
Sport, food, music, the arts and informative events are all part of the line-up and CoAction, West Cork Development Partnership, the GAA, National Learning Network and West Cork Mental Health Services are among the active partners.
The festival will celebrate the strength and support that community brings through unity and sharing with each other. It aims to open new connections for people and groups and to acknowledge people’s talents and gifts. To symbolise this, over the two days, people will be invited to name and add a link to a ribbon chain of connections from across West Cork’s communities communities.
On Friday October 9th there will be a fun and informative session at Wolfe Tone Square in Bantry, kicking off with a gentle start to the day with the ‘Morning Glory’ dance group from 7.30am – all are welcome to attend.
The HSE Cumasú or ‘wellness bus’ will act as a centre for information and hospitality over both days.
On Friday evening, the ‘Live Life and Sing’ concert will take place at the Maritime Hotel at 8pm. This concert, celebrating the inspiring legacy of the late Donal Walsh, is also a fundraising event for charities including SVP Bantry and The Live Life Foundation. This is the only fee paying event during the festival. Tickets, at €10, are available from the Maritime Hotel.
There is a fantastic line-up of entertainment and heart lifting music planned for this occassion, including Bantry Community choir, Acapellabella, flautist Caoimhe Conlon and traditional music and song with the Skibbereen youth branch of Comhaltas Ceolteoirí Eireann. Hosts for the evening are the inimitable stars of the comedy and cabaret show ‘Eileen and Marilyn’ by Playacting Theatre.
On Saturday October 10th, sporting heroes from West Cork will be acknowledged in an awards ceremony in Bantry Square, with special guest and footballing legend Conor Counihan. This event will follow a morning of sporting activity for children and families at Coláiste Pobal. Saturday afternoon will continue in Bantry Square with a Stew Off – a unique event which will feature the culinary skills of a number of local community groups. Samples of a variety of stews will then be offered to those in attendance.
This year’s festival will culminate in The West Cork Big Sing. Choir leader Caz Jeffreys, invites all ages to join singers from all over West Cork, for an hour of singing and feel good vibes at the Marquee, Bantry square at 4pm.
No musical or singing experience is necessary to take part.