2022 Ballyhoura Walking Festival – Pictured above are Marie Healy, Fáilte Ireland Regional Development Officer, Ireland’s Hidden Heartlands, Pat Casey, board member of Ballyhoura Fáilte, Margaret Atalla, Chairperson of Ballyhoura Fáilte, Cllr Kieran O’Hanlon, Deputy Mayor of the City and County of Limerick, Miriam Sadlier Barry, owner of Old Bank B&B in Bruff and board member of Ballyhoura Fáilte, Jim Flynn, Ballyhoura Bears Walking Club and board member of Ballyhoura Fáilte DAC, and Jana Mannion, Tourism & Marketing Officer at Ballyhoura Development CLG. Picture: Diarmuid Greene
Joyce Brothers Music Festival starts on Thursday, October 6
With the memory of this summer’s heatwave starting to fade and the autumn evenings beginning to close in, there’s no better time to get your walking boots on for the 2022 Ballyhoura Walking Festival Teams Up with Joyce Brothers Music Festival
Established as Ireland’s first-ever walking festival, it provides an opportunity to explore some of Ballyhoura’s stunning scenery and this year celebrates 26 years of the festival.
Many of the walks are led by members of the Ballyhoura Bears Walking Club, who have in-depth knowledge of the area and its heritage, history, flora, and fauna. The walks are suitable people of all abilities.
Amongst the 2022 Ballyhoura Walking Festival programme’s highlights is the Moonlight Walk to Castlegale on Friday evening, where you can embark on a night-time journey through forest and woodland paths to the top of Carrighenry at the Limerick/Cork border, Saturday’s breath-taking Sunrise Walk to Seefin to catch the 7.45 am sunrise at the summit of Ballyhoura’s highest mountain, or you could Walk in the Footsteps of Fionn MacCumhail, enjoying spectacular scenery in the Ballyhoura Mountains, where the legendary hero hunted and roamed.
Meanwhile, the easy Canon Sheehan Loop Walk, named after the cleric and poet from Doneraile, follows glorious forest tracks, woodland paths, and riverbank through Glenanaar Forest and along the banks of the Ogeen River.
The Cultural Food Fair 2022 returns once again this year. The fair brings together local and international members of the community as they prepare traditional dishes for people to sample. This takes place on Saturday, October 8 at Ballyhoura Apple Farm from 1.30 pm.
Sunday, October 9 offers a relaxing Mystical Yoga Walk, bringing you on the path of St. Finnan and Brian Boru, and exploring old traditions of our ancestors. However, if your walking boots are still on a quest for discovery, you’ll have several opportunities on Sunday to satisfy them!
A morning Nature Walk following the course of the river Loobagh through the forest and up Slievereagh will help you understand the nature of rivers and how they are formed. If you would like to get a real feel for an Irish woodland and riverbank, then the Keale River Walk is the one for you.
Discover the local history, heritage, folklore and archaeology at Lough Gur, learn about the history of the people, castle and medieval town of Kilmallock, or join a guided tour of Doneraile Park and Gardens, a beautiful event filled with pageantry, history, and storytelling set in the majestic Doneraile Estate’s surroundings in north Cork.
For the second year in a row, the 2022 Ballyhoura Walking Festival is collaborating with The Joyce Brothers Music Festival, which complements and enriches the walking programme with its jam-packed schedule; it promises a weekend of music, song, history, and workshops, celebrating the wonderful legacy and remarkable lives of brothers PW and Robert Dwyer Joyce, natives of Glenosheen.
On Thursday, October 6, the Joyce Festival Gala Opening Night features a celebration of the history and life of the Joyce Brothers through music, song, dance, chat and the magic of Des Dillon and his puppets. Artists and local historians, Teresa O’Doherty and Angela Hennessy, will give an insight into the history and importance of the Joyce brothers and their collections. They will also welcome the Irish Traditional Music Archive, as they premiere the “Drawing from the Well” series, featuring Derek Hickey.
On Friday, October 7 an evening concert with “Hup na Houra”, with special guests Dónal Clancy and Mary Bergin, is followed by a trad session in Healy’s Bar. The Saturday, October 8 afternoon schedule includes a series of workshops, in which the music and songs of the collection will be taught by Aoife Ní Bhriain, Matt Cranitch, Muireann Nic Amhlaoibh and more.
This will be followed by an evening concert in the Chapel Rooms, featuring some of Ireland’s finest musicians, Mick O’Brien, Aoife Ní Bhriain and Eimear Mayock, Jackie Daly,Matt Cranitch and Muireann Nic Amhlaoibh. This will be followed by a music session in Shaughnessy’s Bar.
On Sunday, October 9 in the afternoon, historian Angela Hennessy will guide a Historical Walk and Tunes to the Joyce Brothers’ homestead in Glenosheen, with two more traditional sessions taking place: at 2 pm you can join Liam Flanagan and friends in Nuala Mee’s Pub, Ballyorgan followed by another music session in Ó Ceilleachair’s Pub, Kilfinane at 5 pm, featuring Johnny Óg Connolly, Clíodhna Costelloe and Pádraig Ó Dubhghaill, to close the 2022 Joyce Brothers Music Festival.
To mark being surrounded all weekend by the stunning Ballyhoura landscape, festival participants with an eye for capturing a good photograph–whether that be the beautiful scenery or the ‘craic’ of the festival–can take part in an online photography competition. #BallyhouraMoments #BallyhouraWalkingFestival and #VisitBallyhoura are the all-important hashtags you will need to enter!
Registration for the 2022 Ballyhoura Walking Festival, which is also where you’ll get your must-have merchandise, festival brochure, packed food etc, takes place as follows at the Ballyhoura Centre, Main Street, Kilfinane:
For tickets for all 2022 Ballyhoura Walking Festival Events, go HERE
For information on the Joyce Brothers Festival, go HERE
Tickets for all Joyce Brothers Events, go HERE
For more stories on Ballyhoura, go HERE