A Matchmaker and a Festival Keep an Irish Tradition Alive
The globally famous event, which takes place in the Co Clare town every September, attracts thousands of people from around the world who hope to find their perfect match. The organisers have said that as the next phase of ‘Reopening Ireland’ has been postponed, which would have allowed indoor gatherings of people and outdoors, the event will now have to be cancelled. Mr White said was the busiest and most successful Lisdoonvarna festival ever and he is staying positive looking ahead to Northern Ireland news. Picture by Matt Bohill. Enjoy reading the Irish News? Subscribe now to get full access. Topics lisdoonvarna matchmaking Covid coronavirus.
Lisdoonvarna Matchmaker Festival 2020
This video gives something of the flavour of the event. Dancing and music beginning most days at noon or earlier and continuing non-stop into the small hours of the morning. Age is definitely no barrier — those attending range from 18 to 80, and the older participants are regularly the first up and last to stagger home to bed late at night. The best known of the matchmakers is Willie Daly, who deals in horses when not dealing in love and who claims to have been instrumental in getting hundreds, if not thousands, of couples to the altar.
Do NOT go expecting a sophisticated or upmarket event. Some nods to change are incorporated — there are speed-dating events these days — but mostly the modus operandi is to provide lots of opportunities for people to get together at dances, sessions and in the pubs.
But also there’s daily music and more traditional Irish dancing in every bar for older people. During the festival, everyone can meet Ireland’s most.
In the hopeless hellscape of , a year-old matchmaking event survives in a village in the west of Ireland. Lisdoonvarna is home to approximately people, but in September the village expands by over times as 80, people attend the five-week long Lisdoonvarna Matchmaking Festival. It attracts singletons between 18 and 80 years old from all over Ireland and a contingency from elsewhere. Every day of the month, from 11AM to 2AM, 15 venues across the one-street town offer dancing — predominantly jive, set-dancing and whatever you do to wedding-pop.
In the age of dating apps , ” girlfriend experiences ” and Ashley Madison , the event seems an extraordinary anachronism. Lisdoonvarna now bills itself as both a matchmaking and a country-western music event. In recent years, jive dancing has had a notable resurgence among young people in rural Ireland, but show bands and country music have long been a part of the festival because that kind of music lends itself to the set dancing. The dancing — I am told over and again — and the craic are what bring the thousands of people and facilitate the romance.
Lisdoonvarna is a time warp. It’s as if time has stood still. A third generation “traditional Irish matchmaker”, Willie Daly is the face of Lisdoonvarna, and maker of over 3, matches. Every time I called to see where he was or when suited to meet for our interview, he assured me that he had a man for me who was tall and handsome from the back.
This Tiny Irish Town Draws Big Crowds Looking for Love
But nowadays, for the month of September and early October, this small town in the west of Ireland is infamous as the place to come for love. With literally thousands of new partners to choose from, music and dance can start as early as So September seems to be the month for old time country dancing and romancing!
Like the one about the man who fell to his knees in front of a woman, followed her to the altar and only later admitted that he had not meant to propose — it had been a long night, and he had tripped. Or the one about a woman whose potential suitors kept hanging up after asking her age, until Mr. Daly advised her to say she was young at heart. After that, the year-old widow enjoyed two months of delightful conversation before dying.
Daly — who thinks he is in his early 70s but does not know precisely because, he says, the priest who kept such records drank a lot — has been thinking about love most of his life. While the festival is on, Mr. Daly conducts business in a pub. He keeps these details in a large, overflowing book held together with tape and a shoestring, inherited from his matchmaker father and possessed, he says, of supernatural romantic powers if you touch it with one hand, you will fall in love in six months; both hands, you will be married in six months; and if you are already married, you will fall in love all over again.
Then, sometimes with no more than a twinkle and a nod, he might introduce two people, buying a woman a drink or nudging a farmer toward the dance floor. The rest of the year, Mr. Daly makes matches by mail and by telephone, though visitors from as far away as New York have turned up on the doorstep of his County Clare farmhouse. Daly, who has just recently decided to learn how email works.
Lisdoonvarna Matchmaking Festival. Main Street Ireland’s top country music festival featuring Nathan Carter, All Folk’d Up, Michael English and Johnny Brady.
Rate or Review. Lisdoonvarna Matchmaking Festival is the biggest event of its kind in Europe and part of the rich tradition of rural Ireland. The festival features live music and dancing with the performances by the very best names in traditional country music. The first two weekends both have an amazing line up of live country music acts and the final three weekends are dedicated to music and dancing, with even more events planned for mid-week.
Lisdoonvarna Matchmaking Festival
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Find love in Lisdoonvarna, Ireland, in September. Photo: couple-playing image by JulianMay. Single people know that finding a romantic partner is more likely at some places than others, but most also know it’s never an easy thing. In Ireland, one little town tries to make things a little simpler by holding a monthlong festival aimed at love. During the other 11 months, visitors to Lisdoonvarna come for relaxation and pampering: The town of fewer than 1, people has earned its reputation as a spa town thanks to the number of natural mineral springs in the area.
Some festival-goers still come to find love, and events like speed-dating and dances promote the idea, but many people also just come to celebrate love and life without expecting to go home with a mate. Although 40, visitors make their ways to the Matchmakers Festival in Lisdoonvarna each September, most are out-of-towners, according to the Tour Clare website.
Matchmakers Festival in Ireland
Lisdoon — as it’s known locally — sprouted up from the karst limestone landscape in County Clare to become one of Ireland’s earliest tourism hot spots. But water wasn’t the only reason people flocked to this spa town. At the end of the harvest in September, farmers descended on the thriving village in search of an alternative tonic: a cure for their lonely hearts. They arrived single and, if all went well, left with a woman who’d be their wife. The meet-a-mate tradition — or at least the general gist of it — continues more than years later with the Lisdoonvarna Matchmaking Festival , Sept.
The town is famous for its music and festivals. Although the music festival was discontinued in the s, Lisdoonvarna still hosts its annual matchmaking festival each September. Lisdoonvarna is located in the area of County Clare known as the Burren , on the N67 road between Ballyvaughan and Ennistymon. The Aille river flows through the town, where it is joined by the Gowlaun and Kilmoon streams.
The town is in the civil parish of Kilmoon. The present town is a comparatively new one by Irish standards, dating mainly from the start of the 19th century. The spa official opened in , but the town was visited before by people partaking of the waters. Even by the s, however, the facilities were quite primitive. The wells were privately owned by the Guthrie family and were later developed and baths built by the new owner, a Dr. Westropp, who lived in a house overlooking the spa. On 11 September , the house of landowner Mike Walsh was attacked by “moonlighters” members of one of the organized bands of desperados that carried on a system of agrarian outrages in Ireland.
A detachment of the Royal Irish Constabulary defended the house and its owner, and there was heavy fighting in and around the house. Head Constable Whelehan was killed. All the moonlighters were captured.
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Fed up with Tinder? The festival has been run for over years and is one of the oldest music events in Ireland. The music lineup mostly includes country.
Lisdoonvarna Matchmaking Festival is the biggest event of its kind in Europe and part of the rich tradition of rural Ireland. The festival features live music and.
For the month of September, this tiny spa town of residents hosts the popular Lisdoonvarna Matchmaking Festival — a month-long celebration bringing together hopeful romantics from around the world. The festival is notorious for its lively all-day, all-night dancing and impromptu marriage proposals often triggered after a few pints at the pub. A third-generation matchmaker, Daly is best known for presiding over the festival.
Matchmaking in Lisdoonvarna dates back generations and flourished with the rise of spa tourism in the s. The dance floor is flooded with spirited party-goers, step-dancing and twirling their dance partners, some decked out in sparkly bling. The next day, we drag our weary butts out of bed and traipse into town for a lookie-loo. The first stop is the Roadside Tavern for a bite and beer tasting, teeming with fatigued festival-goers. Here on the second floor of the pub, Brewmaster Peter Curtin makes a handful of malty ales — none of which are bottled.
Within minutes, a sing-along erupts in the pub.