THE village of Foynes is the place to be this weekend as the Irish Coffee Festival this place following its return last year after a six year break.
The festival, which began last night with a floats parade, is very much a family-oriented one, with the emphasis on lots of outdoor and free entertainment, said festival chairman Margaret O’Shaughnessy.
A festival stage has been set up and over each evening will host bands such as Blue Ridge Reiveiw, Shaun O’Dowd and Hanora and An Ordinary Man, the Christy Moore Tribute band.
The Museum Square will also be the venue for a ceili mor with Taylors Cross on Sunday afternoon.
The emphasis on family fun continues this afternoon with a children’s party in the woods, with magic and puppet shows, drumming and lots of surprises.
And there will be chance for the public to give their verdict on this year’s four finalists in the Powers Irish Coffee Making Championship. The four will demonstrate their skills from the festival stage and the public’s verdict will count for 25% of their overall mark.
There will be an evening of music this evening, culminating in a spectacular fireworks display over the harbour - and also including a festival Mass.
Members of the public will be able to visit the Irish naval service vessel, the L.E. Orla this afernoon and again tomorrow afternoon.
Sunday afternoon, the reigning Irish Coffee Champion, Roisin Sweeney will demonstrate her skill, and the many stalls for the Food and Irish Craft Fair will take over the Museum Square.
A pet farm will operate at the community centre, the ceili dancers will jig the afternoon away and a historical walk of Foynes will lead off at 4pm.
Foynes Yacht Club is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year and will mark the occasion with a series of competitions and a fun day on the water.
The festival will end on a high note on Sunday evening when the Powers Irish Coffee Making Championship takes place, in the very building in which the first Irish Coffee was created by chef Joe Sheridan almost 70 years ago. Comedian Alan Shortt returns as compere. All details at www.foynesfestival.com.