Home What's On Our guide to what’s on during the first weekend of Spring

Our guide to what’s on during the first weekend of Spring

Brought to you by Laois Tourism 

After a relatively quiet January this weekend is a really busy one. Dunamaise Arts Centre is buzzing all weekend with comedy, the Fureys and writing workshops.   

The Laois Hunt Ball is on in Durrow and Courtwood GAA have their dinner dance in the Heritage Hotel so lots of chances to get dressed up this weekend.  

As usual there are lots of outdoor activities with walks with the Slieve Bloom Association and there’s even an Imbolc Festival in the Slieve Blooms which is celebrated locally as a  “Milking of the Goat” Festival.

A great family friendly way to see the local traditions from times gone by and also get to take in a scenic walk. It’s certainly not one you are likely to see anywhere else.  


Comedy at the Dunamaise

Bat The Father, Rabbit The Son is an explosive comedy which shows comedic insights into a father son relationship. The show comes highly recommended and begins at 8pm.  

Tickets are on sale for €16/€14 in Dunamaise Arts Centre.

Laois Heritage AGM

Attention all Laois Heritage Members. The AGM will be held in the Midland Park Hotel at 8pm on Thursday, January 31. We would love to see you all there.


The Fureys

Legends of Irish music & song, The Fureys have been entertaining audiences worldwide for 41 years.

Hear them sing all their hits, ‘When You Were Sweet Sixteen’, ‘I Will Love You’, ‘The Green Fields of France’, ‘The Old Man’, ‘Red Rose Café’, ‘From Clare to Here’, ‘Leaving Nancy’, ‘Steal Away’, etc.

There are very few tickets left so book very soon. Show begins at 8pm. For more information see here

St Brigid’s Cross Making

Headens Bar, Spink are marking St Brigid’s day with a lovely evening of cross making.  

Come along and help celebrate the traditions associated with this famous Irish Saint and enjoy a great night out. Cross making begins at 9pm.

Mary Byrne

Popular singer Mary Byrne will be singing all the hits from the ’60s, the musicals and many more. The show will include special guests, the Portarlington Golf Club Choir.

The show begins at 8pm and tickets cost €15 and are on sale now from Portarlington Golf Club (057 8623115) and from Colgan Sports, Portarlington (057 8623005).

Handmade with Care Exhibition

Heritage House, Abbeyleix is hosting a pop-up exhibition this Friday night. The exhibition will showcase forgotten crafts of the past, as well as present them in a contemporary light.

There will be a number of workshops for adults and children during the exhibition. All are welcome and light refreshments will be served.  

There is no cover charge and runs from 7.30pm-9.00pm.

James O’Connor

Local and well loved musician James O’Connor is playing Kavanagh’s Bar & Venue Friday night from 9.30. There is no cover charge and it’s a great excuse for a night out at the end of a long January.

Townscape – Portraits of homes in Stradbally by Mary Burke

The Laois Arthouse Gallery, Stradbally is hosting Mary Burke’s fascinating Townscape collection. ‘Townscape’ brings sociology, the community and the arts into collaborative practice.

Consisting of 18 paintings in oil pastel on canvas, ‘Townscape’ opened on May 8 in the Irish Architectural Archive and has returned to the Arthouse from 1st-22nd February.   

There is no cover charge to see this amazing collection and can be viewed during opening hours:
Tues and Thurs: 1pm-5pm and 5.30pm-8pm
Sat: 10am-1pm (through the Library)
Wed and Fri: 1pm-4pm (through the Laois Arthouse)


Courtwood GAA Presentation Dinner Dance

It’s time to dust off the glad rags and come along to the Heritage Hotel for a dinner dance in aid of Courtwood GAA. It promises to be a great night with music by Electrix followed by a DJ.  

The evening begins at 7pm and tickets cost €50. For more information phone 087 617 1899 or 086 898 1766.

The 2 Johnnies

The 2 Johnnies are a hugely popular and hilarious music & comedy duo from Tipperary. Known for their comedy sketches and songs that capture the uniquely funny side of all things Irish, they have become part of the fabric of the Irish entertainment scene.  

Tickets are €23 and the show begins at 8pm in the Midland Park Hotel. For tickets see here.

Sailing Solo – Writing and Performing a Solo Play

Join Donal O’Kelly to examine ways of honing text to suit performance and using performance techniques to enhance and change up text.

Donal will use samples from his own work for illustration purposes and this is a not-to-be-missed workshop is for anyone keen to develop their own solo show.

The workshop runs in Dunamaise Arts Centre and tickets are €30 for workshop only. Or sign up today for €40 and it includes a ticket for Bat the Father on Thursday 31st January at 8pm.

The workshop runs from 11am-1pm. 

The Valves

Another firm favourite play Kavanagh’s Bar & Venue Saturday night. There is no cover charge and the gig begins at 9.30pm.

Durrow Laois Hunt Ball 2019

Castle Arms Hotel hosts Laois foxhounds annual hunt ball this Saturday. The evening begins with a champagne reception at 7.30pm followed by a five course meal including wine.

Entertainment on the night is by live band Vegas Nights. Tickets are available from Harry Lalor on 0851032677 and tickets cost €70 for adults and students for €50.

Dirtbirds’ Self-Help Tour  

Come and join the Dirtbirds as they navigate the stresses and strains of modern life in this rip-roaring two hours of comedy gold; a unique blend of hilarious sketches and stand-up.  

Tickets are €20/€18 and the show begins at 8pm in Dunamaise Arts Centre. 


Slieve Bloom Guided Walk

The Slieve Bloom Walking Club’s next guided walk is White Horse Falls/Clear Lake Guided Walk.  

This walk is a Grade A 8km walk and takes 4 hours so a good level of fitness is required.

Meeting point is at Cattle Mart, Mountrath at 11am.  €5 per walk or €20 annual membership (€30 for family).

Bird Watch Laois

Bird Watch Laois are going on a trip to the Laois/Kilkenny border to check out some wetland sites for swans, ducks and waders. Meet in The Square Durrow at 09.30am. All very welcome to join us.

Imbolc Festival 2019 – “Milking of the Goat” Festival

Imbolc Festival 2019 or ‘Milking of the Goat’ Festival is organised by the Slieve Bloom Association. Now in its 7th year, this years Festival will take place on Sunday 3rd February.

The meeting point is Cadamstown Car Park, County Offaly at 1.30pm and leaving at 2pm sharp for the Bracket Stones on Spink Hill.

Imbolc Festival 2019

This truly unique festival in our beautiful Slieve Blooms showcases the ancient traditions of the area.  

The Imbolc Festival marks the beginning of Spring. It is one of the four Celtic seasonal festivals. The Imbolc Festival was revived by the Slieve Bloom Association in 2013 and the custom associated with the Slieve Bloom Mountains is the milking of the goat.

At this family friendly event you will have the opportunity to watch or take part in the ancient Imbolc Festival of the milking of the goat on Spink Hill.  

The meeting point is Cadamstown Carpark at 1.30pm and leaving for 2pm to Bracket Stones on Spink Hill.

Walk & Talk- Timahoe

Take some time out of your busy schedule and join us for a nice leisurely walk and a friendly chat. Meeting point is Goose Green in the village at 12 noon. Any questions or queries, please contact Mary on 087 234 3616 or Anne on 087 947 7362.

If you would like to have something included in our What’s On Guide email us on info@laoistoday.ie or call 057 8670722

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