Yulefest Kilkenny makes a Festive Return!

People turned up in their thousands to mark the start of Kilkenny’s festive season

This Saturday, 26th November saw the commencement of Yulefest Kilkenny with the arrival of Santa Claus to the Marble City by boat and the switching on of the Christmas Lights on the Parade! Revellers turned up in their thousands to welcome Santa to Kilkenny and enjoy the Christmas Market.

Accompanied by Kilkenny Civil Defence and the Nore Dragon Paddlers, brave Santa travelled up the river Nore from Greensbridge to Canal Square where hundreds lined the river banks and bridges cheering to give him a warm welcome to Kilkenny!

Santa was then joined by people on foot and on bike for a parade through Kilkenny’s medieval streets as he made his way to the Castle Park with the help of his Elves and Mayor David Fitzgerald and their pedal power. Santa was in no rush and spent plenty of time getting into pictures with children and enjoying his time in Kilkenny!

Santa, Mrs Claus and the Elves then joined Cathaoirleach Cllr. Pat Fitzpatrick, Mayor Cllr. David Fitzgerald and MC Edward Hayden on the Yulefest Bandstand in officially launching the festive season in Kilkenny as they switched on the Christmas Tree lights!

Visitors to Yulfest joined Santa in the big countdown and Cathaoirleach Cllr. Pat Fitzpatrick commented “Christmas is a time of year to bring people together and Yulefest embraces this community spirit, and creates the perfect festive atmosphere to welcome visitors to Kilkenny. A key feature of the Yulefest Kilkenny Festival is its community connectivity.”

Throughout the day there was live music with Samba Katz, RhythmRiot and Code of Behaviour entertaining people as they browsed the Christmas Market and took part in the festive fun. The Market was open again on Sunday with free live music from Gwen Blanchfield and Oracle

Villa and plenty of delicious food to try and beautiful gifts to purchase.

Yulefest ‘Christmas in Kilkenny’ brings the festive spirit to Ireland’s Marble City and County from Friday 25th November to Friday 23rd December! Kilkenny’s Medieval City is transformed into a Christmas Wonderland of festive cheer for all the family. After the success of last year’s festival, this year Yulefest has grown – with a larger Christmas Market on The Parade and an extended Christmas week programme. Events are on throughout the county with a variety of festive markets taking place this weekend – check out yulefestkilkenny.ie for details.

A highlight of the Yulefest calendar is the Medieval Mile Run which will take place on Friday 2nd December. Brought to you by Kilkenny City Harriers this fast course, will cross over St. Francis Bridge, through Irishtown and High Street and finish at Kilkenny Castle. Open to all levels, the run is a healthy way to start the festive period. Visit yulefestkilkenny.ie to register.

Firm favourites at Yulefest are the Rogu fire show and fireworks display. This year, Rogu will perform Fire Map, a set of new routines where they will fuse circus and fire performance together with the illusions of magic and object manipulation, dance and theatre. This fire and light show will take place on Saturday 17th December. Begin Christmas with a flourish with the Yulefest Fireworks Display on Friday 23rd December. Come together with family and friends to enjoy a visual aerial feast as we light up the skies over Kilkenny Castle Park!

This year there are some very special events as part of the festival – a unique photographic exhibition in Statham’s at the Pembroke with iconic imagery of Kilkenny hurling and camogie stars, and a visit by Dermot & Dave’d Campervan of Christmas Joy! Full details available on www.yulefestkilkenny.ie.

Tim Butler of Kilkenny County Council said “Yulefest’s 5-week festival welcomes visitors to Kilkenny with a packed programme of Christmas activities including live music on the Yulefest Bandstand; the Kilkenny Christmas Market; the Medieval Mile Run; a fireworks display and plenty more. New for Yulefest Kilkenny 2022 is an extended Christmas week programme beginning on Tuesday 20th December. The Kilkenny Christmas Market will be open throughout the week, along with live music on the Yulefest Bandstand and some very special treats that you won’t want to miss.”

Yulefest Kilkenny is programmed, produced and marketed by Kilkenny County Council.



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