The Irish have been celebrating the winter solstice for thousands of years, like many cultures around the world. On the 21st December the Oak King (king of light) and the Holly King (king of dark) battle, and only when the Oak King is victorious is the light allowed to return to the land. These traditions are tied closely to our relationship with the land and our dependence on it.
Smashing Times and Slí an Chroí, in partnership with Dublin Institute of Technology, and with support from Dublin City Council Arts Office, are delighted to announce the 9th annual City of Dublin Winter Solstice Celebration Festival taking place on Friday 21 December 2018 from 4 to 7pm.
Where: DIT Grangegorman Campus to Smithfield Square
When: 21 December 2018
Indoor Festival: 4-5.30pm
Outdoor Festival and Parade: 5.30-7pm
Indoor Festival: 4-5.30pm at DIT Grangegorman Campus
The gathering begins. All are welcome to come and enjoy a spectacular grand Céilí and set dancing event featuring traditional Irish music and dancing by the Brian Boru Céilí band. Or come and watch a Solstice Storytelling performance with poetry, song and stories such as The Shamanic Santa Story, The Yule Fairies, How the Fox Stole Solstice and many more. Enjoy face painting, a magic card show or craft making to work on masks, banners and wreaths for the parade. Participants are encouraged to create your own personal ‘withy’ (a decorated twig for your blessings, prayers, wishes) that will be placed in the Solstice fire at the end of the parade taking place at Smithfield Square. Creative stalls included the holly brooch and ivy wreath stand, the withy stand, the hat and rattle making stand and the face-painting corner for a Winter Solstice design.
Outdoor Festival and Parade: 5.30pm, An Croí, DIT Grangegorman Campus to Smithfield Square
Our parade assembles at An Chroi, the main entrance to DIT Grangegorman Campus at 5.30pm. A colourful, choreographed movement performance announces the arrival of the Sun Goddess, the Snow Queen and Ice princesses followed by the lighting of the fire bowl and the beginning of the parade. The route is: DIT Grangegorman > Grangegorman Road Lower > North Brunswick St > Red Cow Lane > Smithfield Square. Our parade is made up of members of the public, and you are all welcome to join us. Dress in bright, festive colours of red and yellow, bring a lantern, a rattle, a drum, a tambourine, anything that shines and makes a sound and walk with us from Grangegorman down to Smithfield Square to celebrate the winter Solstice.
All activities are free. More information available here.