Saturday 25 February 2017

Wheelbarrows, wellies and wet wipes aplenty as Electric Picnic kicks off

Kirsty Blake Knox

Kirsty Blake Knox

Revellers from Meath at the entrance to Electric Picnic Photo: Caroline Quinn
Revellers from Meath at the entrance to Electric Picnic Photo: Caroline Quinn

Armed with wheelbarrows, wellies and wet wipes, the first festival goers arrived at the Stradbally gates at 7am. And they were delighted to see blue skies.

"It's definitely hot pants weather," one lady in a feathered headdress said.

Roz Purcell at the 3Live experience at Electric Picnic. Photo: Sasko Lazarov/Photocall Ireland
Roz Purcell at the 3Live experience at Electric Picnic. Photo: Sasko Lazarov/Photocall Ireland
Ruth O'Neill and Cassie Stokes at the 3Live experience at Electric Picnic. Photo: Sasko Lazarov/Photocall Ireland
Ruth O'Neill and Cassie Stokes at the 3Live experience at Electric Picnic. Photo: Sasko Lazarov/Photocall Ireland
Maria Walsh and Shauna Keogh at the 3Live experience at Electric Picnic. Photo: Sasko Lazarov/Photocall Ireland
Maria Walsh and Shauna Keogh at the 3Live experience at Electric Picnic. Photo: Sasko Lazarov/Photocall Ireland
Claudine Keane at the 3Live experience at Electric Picnic. Photo: Sasko Lazarov/Photocall Ireland
Blathnaid Tracey at the 3Live experience at Electric Picnic. Photo: Sasko Lazarov/Photocall Ireland
Rosanna Davison at the 3Live experience at Electric Picnic. Photo: Sasko Lazarov/Photocall Ireland
Rosanna Davison at the 3Live experience at Electric Picnic. Photo: Leon Farrell/Photocall Ireland
Eoghan McDermott and Blathnaid Tracey at the 3Live experience at Electric Picnic. Photo: Sasko Lazarov/Photocall Ireland
Rozanna Purcell at Casa Bacardi. Photo: Patrick O'Leary
Ruth O'Neill & Cassie Stokes, at day two of Electric Picnic. Picture: Fergal Phillips
Pictured is (LtoR) Sarah Anderson and Uriah Wilkie Harvey at the 3Live experience at Electric Picnic. Photo: Sasko Lazarov/Photocall Ireland
Simon Harris Minister for Health & Leo Varadkar Minster for Social Protection, at day 3 of Electric Picnic. Picture by Fergal Phillips
Rosanna Davison and Wesley at the 3Live experience at Electric Picnic. Photo: Leon Farrell/ Photocall Ireland
Claudine Palmer and her mother Joan (on far right ) with Zoe Drogook and Lorraine Taylor at the 3Live experience at Electric Picnic. Photo: Leon Farrell/ Photocall Ireland
Pictured was Aoibhinn McGinnity at Electric Picnic's first ever swimming-pool-come-dance-floor, brought to Stradbally by Orchard Thieves alongside The Bold mOTel. Picture Jason Clarke
Pictured was Roisin O at Electric Picnic's first ever swimming-pool-come-dance-floor, brought to Stradbally by Orchard Thieves alongside The Bold mOTel. Picture Jason Clarke
Rachael Prendergast, Rachel Purcell and Corina Gaffey at Casa Bacardi. Photo: Patrick O'Leary
Louise Johnston at Casa Bacardi. Photo: Patrick O'Leary
Stylish in leopard print at Casa Bacardi. Photo: Patrick O'Leary
Dressed for the weather at Casa Bacardi. Photo: Patrick O'Leary
2 Sept 2016: Sandra Tierney, left, 30, from Cavan, and Sandra Nestor, 28, from Galway. Electric Picnic Festival - Friday. Stradbally, Co. Laois. Picture: Caroline Quinn
2 Sept 2016: Amy McCormack, left, 19, from Lucan, and Eimear Byrne, 19, from Blanchardstown. Electric Picnic Festival - Friday. Stradbally, Co. Laois. Picture: Caroline Quinn
2 Sept 2016: Revellers arrive for first day of Electric Picnic. Electric Picnic Festival - Friday. Stradbally, Co. Laois. Picture: Caroline Quinn
2 Sept 2016: Ciara Kennedy, 18, from Laois, arrives at festival. Electric Picnic Festival - Friday. Stradbally, Co. Laois. Picture: Caroline Quinn
2 Sept 2016: Girls take a selfie at their tent. Electric Picnic Festival - Friday. Stradbally, Co. Laois. Picture: Caroline Quinn
2 Sept 2016: Revellers from Stradbally at their tents at festival. Electric Picnic Festival - Friday. Stradbally, Co. Laois. Picture: Caroline Quinn
2 Sept 2016: Revellers from Athlone in the campsite. Electric Picnic Festival - Friday. Stradbally, Co. Laois. Picture: Caroline Quinn
2 Sept 2016: Revellers from Abbeyleix, Laois, at their tents. Electric Picnic Festival - Friday. Stradbally, Co. Laois. Picture: Caroline Quinn
2 Sept 2016: John Hanlon, from Rathcoole, Dublin, enjoying Electric Picnic. Electric Picnic Festival - Friday. Stradbally, Co. Laois. Picture: Caroline Quinn
2 Sept 2016: l-r; Zoe Whelan, 19, Mary Doyle, 20, Katie Reddin, 19, from Laois, Alan Greenan Brennan, 19, from Drogheda, Katie Fitzpatrick, 19, from Laois, Amy McMahon, 19, from Monaghan, and Aoife Brassil, 19, from Kilkenny, enjoying Electric Picnic. Electric Picnic Festival - Friday. Stradbally, Co. Laois. Picture: Caroline Quinn
2 Sept 2016: Elaine O'Donoghue, 33, from Cork, enjoying Electric Picnic. Electric Picnic Festival - Friday. Stradbally, Co. Laois. Picture: Caroline Quinn
2 Sept 2016: Revellers enjoying the music at The Incredible De Programming Machine at the Electric Picnic. Electric Picnic Festival - Friday. Stradbally, Co. Laois. Picture: Caroline Quinn
2 Sept 2016: Revellers from Meath at the entrance to Electric Picnic. Electric Picnic Festival - Friday. Stradbally, Co. Laois. Picture: Caroline Quinn
Al Porter at Electric Picnic Festival. Picture: Caroline Quinn
2 Sept 2016: l-r; Zoe Whelan, 19, Mary Doyle, 20, Katie Reddin, 19, from Laois, Alan Greenan Brennan, 19, from Drogheda, Katie Fitzpatrick, 19, from Laois, Amy McMahon, 19, from Monaghan, and Aoife Brassil, 19, from Kilkenny, enjoying Electric Picnic. Electric Picnic Festival - Friday. Stradbally, Co. Laois. Picture: Caroline Quinn
2 Sept 2016: Louise Duffy enjoying Electric Picnic. Electric Picnic Festival - Friday. Stradbally, Co. Laois. Picture: Caroline Quinn
2 Sept 2016: Revellers from Cork l-r; Sara Daly, 23, Caitlan Owens, 23, Emma Tuomey, 23, Hazel Bransfield, 22, Rebecca Baxter, 22, and Aisling Doyle 22, enjoying Electric Picnic. Electric Picnic Festival - Friday. Stradbally, Co. Laois. Picture: Caroline Quinn
2 Sept 2016: Revellers from Cork l-r; Sara Daly, 23, Caitlan Owens, 23, Emma Tuomey, 23, Hazel Bransfield, 22, Rebecca Baxter, 22, and Aisling Doyle 22, enjoying Electric Picnic. Electric Picnic Festival - Friday. Stradbally, Co. Laois. Picture: Caroline Quinn
2 Sept 2016: Thais Muniz of Turbane-se (Turban Yourself) with happy client Maria from Dublin. Electric Picnic. Electric Picnic Festival - Friday. Stradbally, Co. Laois. Picture: Caroline Quinn
2 Sept 2016: Holly Carroll, left, 5, and pal Katelyn Higgins, 5, from Stradbally, enjoying Electric Picnic. Electric Picnic Festival - Friday. Stradbally, Co. Laois. Picture: Caroline Quinn
2 Sept 2016: Mary Clara Hutchinson, from Kansas City, USA, enjoying Electric Picnic. Electric Picnic Festival - Friday. Stradbally, Co. Laois. Picture: Caroline Quinn
2 Sept 2016: Emma Sothern, 30, from Carlow, enjoying Electric Picnic. Electric Picnic Festival - Friday. Stradbally, Co. Laois. Picture: Caroline Quinn
2 Sept 2016: General view of Electric Picnic. Electric Picnic Festival - Friday. Stradbally, Co. Laois. Picture: Caroline Quinn
2 Sept 2016: Louise Duffy enjoying Electric Picnic. Electric Picnic Festival - Friday. Stradbally, Co. Laois. Picture: Caroline Quinn
2 Sept 2016: Rosie Ponder, 28, from Carlow, enjoying Electric Picnic. Electric Picnic Festival - Friday. Stradbally, Co. Laois. Picture: Caroline Quinn
2 Sept 2016: Reveller enjoying Electric Picnic. Electric Picnic Festival - Friday. Stradbally, Co. Laois. Picture: Caroline Quinn
2 Sept 2016: Kate Shields, 26, from Galway, enjoying Electric Picnic. Electric Picnic Festival - Friday. Stradbally, Co. Laois. Picture: Caroline Quinn
2 Sept 2016: Sarah Kelly, 23, left, and Jessica Berney, 23, from Newbridge, enjoying Electric Picnic. Electric Picnic Festival - Friday. Stradbally, Co. Laois. Picture: Caroline Quinn

By midday, 30,000 had crowded through the gates and started setting up camp.

Weighed down with tent poles and pallets of beers, festival goers trekked through fields.

Eimear Ryan was regretting her choice of footwear. She admitted wearing a new pair of Dr Martens for the long trek through the campsite had been an error in judgment.

"I should have broken them in beforehand," she said holding her boots. "That's why I'm just wearing the socks now."

Girls take a selfie at their tent Photo: Caroline Quinn
Girls take a selfie at their tent Photo: Caroline Quinn

Festival veterans Danny Ryan (30), Eoghan Ryan (31) and friend Craig Berkeley (31) were better equipped with a stash of spare socks and pallets of beer. "We have been coming here for 10 years, we are seasoned pros," Eoghan said. "We come prepared, yoga mats, boots, the lot."

Blaithin O'Driscoll (20) from Clare was looking forward to partying the night away before finding her inner sense of zen.

"I'm also going to do some yoga to balance out the late nights and booze."

And indeed, for those nonplussed by headline acts and acoustic sets, there are heaps of things to do and see if you want to miss the bands at Electric Picnic.

Revellers, some laden with crates of alcohol, prepare for Electric Picnic at the festival's Stradbally site Photo: Caroline Quinn
Revellers, some laden with crates of alcohol, prepare for Electric Picnic at the festival's Stradbally site Photo: Caroline Quinn

Deep in the Hazel Wood - one of Electric Picnic's new areas - picnickers are invited to take a trip through a "Cerebral Maze".

Don Conroy, best known for his rapport with Zig and Zag, his colourful knit jumpers and his passion for drawing owls, will be sketching over the weekend at Surf's Laundry Club.

And for those who haven't gown tired of RTÉ continually screening episodes of 'Father Ted', there is a day of celebrations for the 20th anniversary of 'My Lovely Horse'.

Yogi will rejoice at the plethora of practises they can try out at EP this weekend.

Revellers arrive for first day of Electric Picnic Photo: Caroline Quinn
Revellers arrive for first day of Electric Picnic Photo: Caroline Quinn

And once you've got your detox, you can head back into the main site and re-tox.

Those wishing to get a glam make over after journeying to Laois headed to Pamper Street, where you can get your hair "sculpted" to look like a mermaid, your body painted with temporary tattoos, and your nails filed.

As dirty grey clouds appeared on the horizon last night, it was clear the good weather wasn't going to last.

"It doesn't matter," said Ciara Kennedy (18), from Laois. "We'll just dance in the rain."

Irish Independent

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