AFTER attracting record-breaking crowds and hosting superstar musicians, it would be tough to think how this year’s Knights of WestFest summer festival could top 2012.
However the organisers of the Newcastle West event have decided to embrace the spirit of ‘The Gathering’ and are offering one lucky local ex-pat the chance to be flown home for this year’s event.
The Knights of WestFest’s ‘bring ‘em back for the craic’ competition is inviting people West Limerick now living in any corner of the globe to describe – in no more than 250 words – why they think they should be flown home for this year’s festival, which in just two years has already become one of the biggest of its kind anywhere in the Mid-West.
Once all the entries are gathered, a short list will be drawn up and the winning entry will be chosen via votes on the Knights of WestFest’s dedicated Facebook page.
Ida Dunworth, a member of the WestFest organising committee, said that they have already received a sizeable chunk of entries.
“We’ve already had the bones of 30 or 40 e-mails come in to us for it. It’s simple to enter – you just have to write 250 words on why you want to come home, or why you want someone to be brought home.
“It’s all about getting people back home for the year that’s in it.”
After its debut in 2011, last September WestFest shattered its own records and drew thousands of people to Newcastle West for a weekend of live music and entertainment, highlighted by blockbuster performances from The Saw Doctors and The High Kings in the town square. Last year also saw the successful addition of the Taste of WestFest two-day food fair in the Demesne.
Ms Dunworth said that while plans for this year’s event are still at an early stage, the committee are hoping to attract “international bands”. She also said that Taste of WestFest will return.
Last October, the committee published full audited accounts for WestFest 2012, which showed that despite generating just shy of €114,000 in income, the event had costs of €109,000. The true value of the event, she said, is the business the festival generates for local pubs, restaurants, hotels and other businesses.
“This isn’t about making money. We only look for a minimum charge, which will be the same again this year.
“What we want to do is provide entertainment for the people of West Limerick, and generate a bit of business for the town”.
To take part in the ‘back for the craic’ competition, e-mail your entry to WestfestNCW@gmail.com or visit the Knights of WestFest’s dedicated Facebook competition page. A special website for the event is also due to be launched soon,