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More than 150 events are featured in the Clare Festivals & Events Guide 2014 which was launched in Ennis, Co. Clare, this week

The International Rose of Tralee Hailey O'Sullivan from Texas joined 2013 Clare Rose Marie Donnellan from Newmarket-On-Fergus, Mayor of Clare Joe Arkins, Mayor of Ennis Mary Coote Ryan, and officials from Clare County Council to launch the programme.

This year marks the 1000th anniversary of the death of Brian Ború with more than 40 of the events this year celebrating the life and times of the Killaloe native and last High King of Ireland.

The Festivals & Events 2014 guide is being made available at tourist offices, as well as at the County’s libraries and Council area offices. Thousands of copies of the new guide are also being distributed to visitor attractions and accommodation providers throughout Clare.

Mayor of Clare Cllr. Joe Arkins said the guide “showcases the breadth of activity ongoing in communities in every corner of County Clare”

The Mayor continued: “I am delighted to see that many of the events first held during the Gathering will take place yet again in 2014 which is further evidence of the success of the initiative in promoting tourism activity in communities across Ireland. Furthermore, the hosting of dozens of events celebrating Clare’s close connections with Brian Ború will help to promote the growing heritage tourism sector in the County.”
 
He added: “I want to pay tribute to communities across Clare who are contributing to the promotion of the County as an attractive location to visit at any time of the year.”

Some of the event highlights from the next few weeks include the Bunratty International Chess Festival (7-9 Feb), 20th Russell Memorial Weekend in Doolin (21–24 February), Corofin Traditional Festival (24 Feb - 2 Mar), Annie at Glór (25 Feb - 1 Mar), Doonbeg Three Act Drama Festival (1-10 Mar) and Ennis Book Club Festival (7-9 Mar).

Other highlights for the remainder of the year include the Loop Head Walking Festival (25-27 Apr), Whitegate May Bank Holiday Festival (2-5 May), Fleadh Nua, Ennis (18-26 May), Doonbeg Seafood Festival (19– 20 Jul), Kilrush Traditional Music & Set Dancing Festival (6- 10 Aug), Burren Tolkien Society Festival (mid-Aug), Mountshannon Trad Festival (26-28 Sep), Ennis Food Festival (4-6 Oct), Kilrush Traditional Horse Fair (10 Oct), Ború3Peaks (11–12 Oct) and October Fest Beer Festival in Bunratty (25-27 Oct).

Meanwhile, many of this year’s events celebrate Brian Ború, who died following the Battle of Clontarf 1000 years ago in 1014. The events include The Kincora Traditional Weekend (4–6 Apr), Brian Ború Millennium Commemorations (11th – 13th Apr), Film on the life of Brian Ború, Newmarket-on-Fergus (18 Apr), Our Native Woodlands as known to Brian Ború, Tuamgraney (20 Apr), Choral Celebration & Gala Concert, St Flannan’s Cathedral (3 May), Tuamgraney Community Weekend (29 May-2 Jun), Brian Ború Inauguration Re-enactment, Quin (21 Jun), Féile Brian Ború, Killaloe Ballina (3-6 Jul), Brutal O’Brien Pageant, Mooghaun Hill fort (24 Aug), Brian Ború Conference, Killaloe Ballina (Date tbc), Féile Eile, Killaloe Ballina (10- 19 Oct), Killaloe Festival of Light (24–25 Oct), and Killaloe Ballina New Years Eve Festival (31 Dec–1 Jan). Visit www.clare.ie for more on the Festivals and events taking place during 2014.