Saturday 1 October 2016

Get set for the weird at Electric Picnic - just don't expect to catch the big match

#SummerFest is the Independent.ie series on Irish summer festivals.

Ciara Treacy

Published 02/09/2015 | 07:13

Three-legged dogs, mad science and a paradise for reggae lovers can all be found at Electric Picnic.

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Just don't expect to see the Dubs' clash with Mayo - it will be a GAA-free zone.

Getting ready for the Electric Picnic at Stradbally Co Laois was Megan Bea-Tiernan from Bray Co Wiclklow at Shane Gillen's Magic Mushroom tent.
Getting ready for the Electric Picnic at Stradbally Co Laois was Megan Bea-Tiernan from Bray Co Wiclklow at Shane Gillen's Magic Mushroom tent.
Getting ready for the Electric Picnic at Stradbally Co Laois was Carina Butterfly, Candy Warhol, Flaming Jade, Fabio Ego Deflato and Shir Madness from The Gladrags and Glam Fags Stage.
Getting ready for the Electric Picnic at Stradbally Co Laois at 'The Bus that fell to Earth' was Dave Sumray from Kilmore Quay Co. Wexford with his dog Rufus.
Getting ready for the Electric Picnic at Stradbally Co Laois at 'The Bus that fell to Earth' was Dave Sumray from Kilmore Quay Co. Wexford with his dog Rufus.
Getting ready for the Electric Picnic at Stradbally Co Laois at the Surf Laundry Club was Aoife Hayward from Ballymacally Co. Clare.

Almost 50,000 people will descend on the annual bash in Stradbally, Co Laois, but there won't be big screens showing any of this weekend's sporting events.

"It isn't something we've done before," said the event's director, Melvin Benn. "I get the impression the local pubs do quite well," he added.

There's a packed schedule of the weird and wacky - and a little music from the likes of Blur and Florence and the Machine too.

And if the music gets too loud for some, they can relax at the My Lovely Ranch petting zoo, where three-legged rescue dogs and horses enjoy the sounds from afar.

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Getting ready for the Electric Picnic at Stradbally Co Laois was Megan Bea-Tiernan from Bray Co Wiclklow at Shane Gillen's Magic Mushroom tent

"We rescue them from all over Dublin, they've been abandoned in housing estates or thrown into wasteland areas," said Ted Maher, who's back for a third year. "The first year we just had a little pony... now we're going to have two horses and about 10 dogs."

Harry Ennis, Lab Technician with The Incredible De-Programming Machine, explained how his stand will reset festival-goers back to 'factory settings'.

READ MORE: Electric Picnic 2015 stage times

"We remove society's influences from people, such as media influences, education and religion," he said. "It's experimental technology really, we haven't perfected it yet... we had a few mishaps," he said.

Elsewhere, Martin Hickey is the creator of the Trenchtown stage, who wants to bring laid-back Jamaican vibes to the hustle and bustle of the weekend.

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Getting ready for the Electric Picnic at Stradbally Co Laois at 'The Bus that fell to Earth' was Dave Sumray from Kilmore Quay Co. Wexford with his dog Rufus

"We don't get rain in here, it's always blue skies in Trenchtown," he claimed.

Festival-goers will be hoping he's right.

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