News and Events

Banjo Pickers Festival & Harvest Day at Bunratty Castle & Folk Park, Sunday September 28th, 1 - 5 pm

Harvest Day at Bunratty Folk Park Bunratty Co Clare Ireland

News Release

Harvest Day Celebrations and Banjo Festival performers for Bunratty Folk Park

The annual gathering of the Harvest will be celebrated in style at Bunratty Folk Park, Co. Clare on Sunday 28th September 2014 with a traditional 19th century Harvest day. To add an extra special touch, this year’s Harvest day celebrations will include four free performances from participants in the Bunratty Banjo Pickers Festival.

On Harvest Sunday visitors to the Folk Park can enjoy a flavour of rural Irish life from over 100 years ago. Owners of vintage tractors and machinery will come from far and wide to proudly display their wares for what promises to be a great family day out.  There will be old style threshing demonstrations, storytelling with local seanachaí, traditional butter making and bread baking demonstrations and music, song and dance.

In olden days threshing was backbreaking work, which started early in the mornings and continued until the end of the day with neighbours and friends, all gathering to help out. The machine, and all the activity about it, had a special attraction for children. Its moving belts, the noise from inside and the way it put out straw and oats, was as intriguing back then as the latest computer game is today.
“We are delighted to recapture the harvest traditions which brought communities together to support each other. We will have an extra special sparkle to the event with a packed programme of musical performances throughout the afternoon,” said John Ruddle, Chief Executive, Shannon Heritage.
The Folk Park will host musical events from 1.00pm to 5.00pm on Sunday 28th September as part of the Bunratty Banjo Puckers Festival which is taking place in locations around Bunratty from the 26th to the 28th September.

Among the artists performing in the Folk Park on Sunday 28th are: Bog Standard String Band performing an Oldtimey Concert; Full Throttle who will entertain visitors with a traditional concert. Also on hand to entertain will be Saint John the Gambler with a Gypsy Swing Concert and the Moron Brothers from the USA will perform a Bluegrass Concert.

In addition, the Bunratty Folk Park Bean a Ti' (Woman of the house) will demonstrate the art of bread baking and butter making and generously offer delicious tastings. The village school master will greet children and adults as they hand over their customary sod of turf for the tiny school room fire.
Visitors will be able to soak up the atmosphere of the musicians and the Strawboys performing in the Folk Park Village Street during the afternoon. All are welcome to enjoy traditional storytelling by the resident Seanachai, the music and dancing, the sheaf throwing demonstrations and the Tug of War.

A full listing of events and the times for each will be on view at the reception to Bunratty Folk Park Normal admission rates apply.  Special family tickets will be available. No reservations necessary. For more information on Bunratty Folk Park visit

Note to Editor
About the Bunratty Banjo Pickers Festival artists performing at Bunratty Folk Park on Sunday 28th September 2014:

Saint John the Gambler

Saint John the Gambler play exciting Alt-Gypsy-Swing music with a dance-inducing spirit. This Dublin-based band has melded sounds from bygone eras and distant lands with modern song writing to create a bluesy gypsy piracy. Their energetic shows have built SJG a reputation as the “must-see” band at every festival around.

Moron Brothers

The Moron Brothers are a Bluegrass duo from Kentucky that wear overalls and do some pickin’ and grinnin’ while singing comical songs. Their hits include the famous lyric “If my nose was running money honey, I’d blow it all on you.” Don’t be fooled – this is great bluegrass from great talents.

Bog Standard String Band

Derek Copley (Banjo, vocals) and Ais Conway Keogh (Fiddle), who charmed us all last year with the Greasy Coat String Band, team up with Clew Bay Critters Tim Rodgers (Mandolin) and Ben Keogh(guitar) to provide some exquisite Oldtimey songs and tunes. Anything but bog standard!

Full Throttle

No limits for this energetic local line-up! Kirby brothers David (accordion) and Jamie (banjo/mandolin) belt out the melodies, with Stephen (Sods) O’Dea on guitar and vocals and Elaine Ryan on guitar, bodhrán and vocals. You’ll be entertained with famous ballads, country favourites, traditional tunes and some funky twists in a rousing performance.

Full programme details for the Bunratty Banjo Pickers Festival re available at