Fly casting Gathering festival in Castleconnell this weekend

Donal O’Regan


Donal O’Regan

Enright's Fishing Rod & Tackle Repository: a trip down memory lane on Sunday at 1pm
CASTLECONNELL has spread its net far and wide for the inaugural John Enright Fly Casting festival this weekend.

CASTLECONNELL has spread its net far and wide for the inaugural John Enright Fly Casting festival this weekend.

Festival organiser, John MacNamara, said Mr Enright’s international exploits brought fame and glory to his native village, and they have a packed schedule from this Friday, October 11 to Sunday, October 13. Competitors, including the top 10 casters in the world, current world champion and record holder, are arriving from Russia, USA, Scotland and Norway as well as the Irish contingent,

On Friday, there will be an exhibition of John Enright memorabilia at the Castle Oaks Hotel – all welcome to attend and hear about their three time world champion.

“From 10am to 5pm on Saturday and Sunday you can visit the memories of Castleconnell shop in the parlour at the ACM Community Centre on Castle Street. Everything on show is for sale including art, toys, Castleconnell tablecloths, old Caisleán copies, handmade handbags and much more.

“Also on Saturday morning from 10am, you can take a historical narrated tour of the river by boat from the World’s End, past the Errina Canal, through O’Brien’s Bridge and around the Island past the weir – it’s a unique trip,” said Mr MacNamara.

There are many events for youngsters aged 10 to 16 in the parish hall including new band One Simple Word playing in the hall from 2-3pm; tag rugby from 3-4pm and soccer camp from 4-5pm. Also on Saturday afternoon, the ACM Centre will hold a kiddies disco from 3-4.15pm followed by magic show from 4.15pm-5.15pm with all ages welcome. Saturday night can be spent at the former home of John Enright - The Shannon Inn - with jazz and other entertainment.

On Sunday between 2pm and 5pm a children’s art workshop is on in the ACM Centre. Adults have not been forgotten either with Barbara Hartigan hosting a riverside painting session from noon to 4pm. Call 061 372750 to book.

For the fishing enthusiasts, the overhead casting qualifiers start at 8am on Saturday at the front of the Castle Oaks Hotel and spey casting qualifiers at 10.30am in Doonass. The spey casting finals start on Sunday at 11am and the John Enright overhead casting finals at 3pm. Come along and watch the elite flycasters in the world battle it out for the top prizes for free. If you have never tried fly casting before but would like to have a go then head to the Castle Oaks on Saturday from noon to 4pm or Doonass on Sunday from 1pm – 3pm, and be in with a chance of winning a fishing rod.

For full information and schedule log onto