Fair Director Albert Titterington said that the family-centered event which had introduced three generations to the country lifestyle since he launched the first Irish Game Fair 43 years ago, would likely be attended by the largest number of people in its history.
After an absence of two years due to the Covid pandemic Mr Titterington said: “While there is definitely a major country sports focus for the large and committed all-Ireland sporting audience, this year we have made sure that the Fair has an unrivalled breadth and depth of appeal as a comprehensive, family-focused celebration of Irish country life.”
He also announced that there was a very special addition to the Fair this year in the form of an “Antrim Fly Fair at Shanes Castle” organized by Stevie Munn. He said: “This makes its debut with nearly 30 international fly dressers, trade stands, casting and fly tying demos and tuition.”
Mr Titterington outlined some of the other many attractions at this year’s Irish Game Fair: “Our Fine Food & Craft Festival, arguably the highlight of a large tented village of country living retailers, is recognised as one of NI’s biggest and best.” In addition to the artisan Food Festival the trade village of around 150 retailers from all over Ireland and GB provide virtually everything to “buy into” the “country lifestyle”.
A full size Viking Longship and several dozen costumed re-enactors might also be stars of the show: “Living History Ireland’s encampment and re-enactments bring to life Antrim’s and NI’s history in an entertaining and educational fashion. Sited in the evocative setting of the old Shanes Castle (reputedly damaged by a flaming banshee) families can wander through several time periods from Vikings to World War 2.”
The three Main Arenas will feature country sports, Viking action, muzzle loaders, living history, dog shows and dog agility, falcons, ferrets, horse and donkey drawn vehicles and even wellie boot throwing. And children are well catered for with a special Amusements Area.
Tickets can be purchased through Eventbrite or at the gate (cash). In order to increase the efficiency of entry and parking there is no normal Eventbrite ticketing charge and Eventbrite ticket holders will go through priority parking. https://www.eventbrite.ie/e/irish-game-fair-fine-food-festival-tickets-335980636127
The Irish Game Fair at Shanes Castle is supported by TourismNI and Antrim & Newtownabbey Council; and by CastleWood Holiday Park https://blairsholidayparks.com/
Telephone: 028 (from ROI 048) 44839167
For the Antrim Fly Fair visit http://antrimflyfair.com/