Seachtain na Gaeilge 2013 began last Monday, March 4 and runs until March 17. Offaly has gotten in on the act, offering lots of events for the annual event that promotes the use of the Irish language and culture both at home and abroad.
The almost two week long event was launched in Dublin last Monday by RTE presenter Evanne Ni Chuilinn and TG4’s Roisin Ni Thomain. Events connected with the festival can be found by logging on to www.snag.ie or by getting a new smartphone app.
Offaly libraries in particular are offering a host of Seachtain na Gaeilge events. Events kicked off in Clara library last Wednesday, with a display and demo of Irish crafts by Clara ICA. Yesterday (Thursday) the same library hosted a talk on the golden era of ceili music and dance from 1955 to 1970 and music by Brosna Comhaltas, while Ferbane library displayed Irish crafts, books, CDs and DVDs. Tullamore later the same day hosted the same talk on the golden era of ceili music and dance.
Looking forward to the rest of Offaly library’s Seachtain na Gaeilge events Birr library will host “Gaeilge agus Ceoil sa Leabharlann” complete with a cupán tae, storytelling, a book display and a film sponsored by the Irish Film Industry on Saturday, March 9 from 11am until 1pm. On Tuesday next, March 12 the senior infants and first class pupils from Gael Scoil Eadan Doire will visit Edenderry library at 9.30am for story-time as Gaeilge. A traditional music session with Killeigh Comhaltas will take place on the evening of March 12 in Tullamore library from 6pm to 7.30pm.
On Wednesday, March 13 Edenderry library will host a tra na gceist table quiz for fourth and fifth class pupils from Gael Scoil Eadan Doire at 11am. In the same library at 6.30pm that day Dr Ciaran Reilly will give a talk on the Gathering entitled “Famous (and not so famous) emigrants from Edenderry and surroundings”. On March 13 Tullamore library has Seachtain na Gaeilge options as well, with a concert with Gaelscoil an Eiscir Riada pupils at 11am.
On Saturday week, March 16 at 11am Tullamore library will host storytime for under tens, with stories told in English and also in Irish. At the same library at 2pm that day there will be a performance of Sean Og dancing by local children. Wrapping up the event for Tullamore libraries will be Edenderry library. On March 20 at 6pm Edenderry Comhaltas will play in the library, followed by a recital by award winning poet Mary O’Connor.
A number of additional Seachtain na Gaeilge events in Birr organised by Biorra le Gaeilge are listed on www.snag.ie. These events include speaking Irish over the course of Seachtain na Gaeilge in The Organic Store and a coffee morning as Gaeilge in Emma’s Cafe from 10.30am on Saturday, March 9. Emma’s Cafe will also host storytelling, music and Irish books on March 9 from 11am until 1pm.
A basket weaving session will take place in Birr library on Tuesday, March 12 from 10am until 4.30pm. On Wednesday, March 13 a film night will take place in the Tin Jug Studio from 7.30pm, while a conversation circle will be hosted in Craughwell’s pub from 9pm. To wrap up events Biorra le Gaeilge will host a one day Irish conversation class on March 18, running from 10am until 4pm.
Speaking about Seachtain na Gaeilge event manager Brendan Ni Ghairbhí said there are over 750 official events registered for this year’s festival “in places as far removed from each other as Australia and Armagh, Corca Dhuibhne and Canada, Newry and Norway, Dáil Éireann and the Norther Ireland Assembly”.