Good news for those who were looking forward to An Tóstal Salthill as the event has been rescheduled to take place this coming Sunday, May 26, with many fun activities planned for its 60th anniversary celebrations.
It had been previously publicised in this paper that the event was taking place on May 5 last however, organisers made the decision to postpone the event due to adverse weather conditions which would have had safety implications for participants in the currach racing.
An Tóstal will now take place this Sunday showcasing the very best of All-Ireland currach racing, along with coastal traditions, customs, music, and dance.
Boating enthusiasts can enjoy watching the competitive racing of currach crews from across Ireland: Clare, Donegal, Kerry, and Galway being among the counties represented. New entrants from Sligo and Cork are expected this year. Live bilingual commentary will keep spectators informed and entertained as the day unfolds. The famous Galway hookers will once again grace the waters of Galway Bay as the Claddagh Boatmen will present a parade of sail to the crowds on the Salthill Promenade during the day.
An Tóstal Salthill is a family orientated free event. The children’s sandcastle competition is very popular with great prizes. In a new addition this year there will be a traditional Irish dancing exhibition by local children and a sean nós dancing exhibition between races. All of these events will take place around Ladies Beach in Salthill where refreshments and a barbecue will sustain the crowds during the day. Live music in Killoran’s Bar, overlooking the promenade will entertain revellers long into the night.
The tug o’war competition has now been moved to Saturday, June 1, and will take place as part of the inaugural Galway Sea Festival.
The timetable of events is as follows: The registration for the currach racing teams and briefing will take place at the Galway Bay Hotel between 10.30 and 11.30am; the currach racing qualifier heats takes place between 12 noon and 4pm with the start and finish line in front of Ladies Beach; the sandcastle competition on Ladies Beach is between 1pm and 2pm - children must bring their own buckets and spades, be accompanied by an adult and be four years or older; Irish traditional dancing display is at 1.30pm between races; the Galway hookers from the Claddagh Boatmen will perform a parade of sail between 2pm and 3pm; Sean nós dancing display takes place at 3pm; the currach racing finals are between 4pm and 6pm with prizes being awarded after the race; and there will be live music in Killoran’s Bar from 7pm until late.