Mullingar gears up to celebrate Bloomsday

Michael Harding, Kathy Harding, and Ferghal Fox at the launch of Mullingar Bloomsday 2011. Photo: John Mc Cauley

Michael Harding, Kathy Harding, and Ferghal Fox at the launch of Mullingar Bloomsday 2011. Photo: John Mc Cauley

Mullingar will once again be celebrating its connection with famous literary genius James Joyce on Bloomsday, June 16.

The Bloomsday 2011 events were launched this week by writer, documentary maker, and Irish Times columnist Manchan Magan who resides in north Westmeath.

Mullingar Bloomsday events are funded by Westmeath County Council and supported by Co Westmeath Tourism Ltd and Mullingar Chamber of Commerce.

Events this year will include the popular Bloomsday walking tour with historian Ruth Illingworth, and the James Joyce character who added great panache to the proceedings last year will again roam the streets of Mullingar.

New events include pony and trap rides and a vintage car display on the Market Square. These will serve as reminders of how the town would have looked back in the early 1900s when James Joyce spent two summer vacations here.

Watch out for the Joyce pop-up reader who will be appearing in local coffee shops throughout Bloomsday and the James Joyce Connection jazz band will again entertain the crowds.

“Co Westmeath Tourism Ltd. is delighted to be part of Mullingar Bloomsday as it’s a significant part of our literary heritage. This year it’s fantastic to have the support of the James Joyce Centre who will promote Mullingar Bloomsday online. The centre has agreed to loan three short documentary films will be shown in Mullingar on Bloomsday. Next year an international symposium for Joycean scholars will be held in Dublin and this will be an opportunity to attract these overseas visitors to Mullingar,” said Rhona Rogers, tourism development officer.

Children aged nine to 12 are invited to take part in a drawing competition themed ‘Mullingar in the 1900s’. Contact Mullingar Library for details. A Photographic and Collected Works of Joyce Exhibition will be hosted by Mullingar Library.

Shopfronts are invited to create imaginative window displays for Bloomsday and restaurants are encouraged to create Bloomsday - inspired menus.

If you would like to get involved, contact Rhona Rogers, Co Westmeath Tourism Ltd, on (044 ) 9335389 or email [email protected].


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