Thursday, March 09, 2023


By Suzanne Pender

SEACHTAIN na Gaeilge is being marked in Carlow this March with a bumper programme of events.

Young people are having much to celebrate with the ever-popular Comórtas Ealaíne (spring art competition) for primary schools already in full swing. Local schools with the best entries will be passed on to Glór Cheatharlach for adjudication, with prizes being awarded to pupils in first to sixth classes.

Other highlights include an Irish drama festival for schools, trad sessions and céilithe, quizzes, Irish language film screenings and, of course, the return of the parade and an afternoon of Spraoi Faoin Aer on Lá Fhéile Pádraig.

Glór Cheatharlach is delighted to present the latest award-winning Irish language film Róise agus Frank as part of the Seachtain na Gaeilge ’23 programme of events in Carlow. More than 1,000 students from a dozen schools will enjoy exclusive morning screenings. A final screening for the general public is scheduled for Wednesday 15 March at 7pm at the IMC Cinema, Fairgreen. Admission is €5.

The George Bernard Shaw Theatre will host the schools drama festival Féile Scoildrámaíochta on Tuesday 14 March, when six schools will stage Irish translations of such popular plays as Annie and Jack and the Beanstalk, while there will be a special staging open to the public that night at 7.30pm of Laochra Gael 1916 by pupils of Gaelscoil Eoghain Uí Thuairisc.

This 30-minute dramatisation of the events surrounding the 1916 Rising is one of the highlights celebrating all things Irish and cultural during this Seachtain na Gaeilge in Carlow.

Tickets for adults cost €5, while there’s no charge for children. Booking is available at or 059 9172400, or on the door.

Lá Fhéile Pádraig kicks off the national feast day celebrations in Carlow with Mass in Irish and the blessing of shamrock in the Cathedral of the Assumption at 10.30am. Music will be provided by the combined Cathedral Choir and Cór an Aifrinn and the celebrant will be an tAthair Conn Ó Maoldhomhnaigh, and members of the 5th Carlow Town Scouts Group will be in attendance.

An afternoon of outdoor entertainment or Spraoi Faoin Aer with lots of family fun will get underway in Potato Market at 1pm, while all eyes will turn to the parade at 3pm.

A Céilí Mór at 9pm in Tinryland GAA Clubhouse with music by Uí Bhriain Céilí Band will bring the day’s festivities to a close.

Comórtas na bhFuinneog, the best-dressed window competition, promises to be extremely popular once again and entry is open to all shops and businesses in Carlow town. Owners are invited to decorate their windows and premises using Irish and/or bilingual phrases and signage. Prizes galore will be up for grabs, with Touchpoint Media sponsoring the top awards, including outdoor advertising packages around Carlow town. To enter, simply dress the window with a display that celebrates all things Irish and email a photograph of the creation to [email protected] and [email protected]. The closing date for entries is 5pm on 16 March.

Carlovians will have several opportunities to gather socially and join a conversation ‘as Gaeilge’ during the festival, including at Lambert’s Café each Wednesday from noon to 1pm.

‘Abhaile do Lá Fheile Pádraig’, a special St Patrick’s get-together for all interested in a spot of Irish conversation in Tully’s Bar, Tullow Street takes place on Saturday 18 March between 3pm and 5pm. This will be an opportunity for all home for the national holiday to renew acquaintances from schooldays past and have a social catch up ‘as Gaeilge’ to wrap up Seachtain na Gaeilge 2023.

The bumper Seachtain na Gaeilge programme with details of all events is available now from Glór Cheatharlach on 085 1340047, 087 2857048 and on Facebook




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