THE Ballyheigue Summer Festival kicks off a whirlwind 10-day programme on Friday night that is set to be one of the best yet.
Fun, fun, fun is the order of the day - and night - throughout the festival with a big emphasis on the Gathering also with a number of big get-togethers taking place.
"We're really excited now and it seems to be going from strength to strength," PRO for the Summer Festival committee Mick Harkin said. "The season has started off well enough in Ballyheigue and now that the national schools are out we're expecting big numbers. The programme is brilliant, with something for all the family every day and the committee have done tremendous work once again." Among the highlights are new events in the tractor skills competiton on the beach on Saturday, at 6pm and the Black Rock Long Puck on Saturday at 1pm).
The Gathering element comes through crossroads dancing at 8pm on Saturday and Sunday at the Castle Gates and the Clash of the Clans in the pubs of the village from 9pm on Sunday, July 7.
"We're selecting a number of Ballyheigue's biggest clans who'll be taking over the pubs of the village and there will be prizes for the biggest clans and the most talented clans among other things," Mick said.
The King of the Beach will be crowned on Sunday at the culmination of the annual 5km race from 12 noon. "They'll definitely be back in time for the Munster Final," Mick was keen to inform potential Kings.
Ballyheigue will come alive to bouncing balls once again in 2013 in a fun-filled event that will see over 1,000 tennis balls released from the top of the hill at the centre of the village on Friday, July 12, at 8pm; the first to reach the bottom of the slope wins!
And it all culminates in a grand parade through the village on Sunday, July 14, and a concert with J90 at the festival marquee at 10pm. For the full programme of events log onto www.ballyheigue.ie.