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The Insider

www A TASTE of Italy is coming to Dublin next week.

A special wine and food tasting will take place in the Westin Hotel next Thursday, February 28. Cool Bubbles, Hot Bites will kick off in the Exchange Restaurant and Cocktail Bar of the hotel at 7pm. The aim of the evening is to showcase the range of Italian sparkling wine Prosecco and the food best suited to it. Italian native Emiliano Fermo will be on hand to explain why the different flavours of their three styles complement certain delicacies. Tickets cost €35 and reservations can be made at Diarmaid.Greene@ Westin.com

• GLEN HANSARD, inset, has been added to the ever-expanding Iveagh Gardens gigs series. News of the Oscar-winning singer-songwriter's addition comes following Wednesday's announcement that Damien Dempsey will also grace the festival line-up. Hansard will play the Dublin city centre venue on Sunday July 21. Hansard has also confirmed he'll make an appearance at the Big Top in Galway as part of the city's Arts Festival on Thursday, July 25. Both performances will see Glen joined on stage by his 11-piece band. Tickets for the two shows will go on sale from February 28.

• ON the heels of a sold-out 50-state US tour, the Found Footage Festival will return to Dublin in March with an all-new show. The one-of-a-kind event will showcase videos found at garage sales and thrift shops throughout North America. Curators Joe Pickett and Nick Prueher host each screening in-person and provide their unique observations and commentary on these videos. The hosts, whose latest finds include some in Ireland last year, are at The Sugar Club for one-night-only on March 18 at 8pm. Tickets are €10 and available via www.found footage fest. com.

• TEN of Ireland's leading art and design graduates launched an exhibition of their work in Dublin's city centre yesterday. Top Ten is an electric exhibition of the top 10 entrants to the prestigious Undergraduate Awards Visual Arts category. The exhibition kicked off in Smithfield Square last night with an exclusive launch party. Public viewing began last night and continues until Sunday, February 24.

• KATHRYN THOMAS was announced yesterday as the official Ambassador of Irish Search Dogs.

The volunteer group also announced it is to become an official partner of the Missing Person's Helpline who search for the 6,000 people reported missing in Ireland every year.

The Missing Person's Helpline provides a support service for family and friends of missing persons, while Irish Search Dogs carry out searches nationwide upon call-outs from emergency services.


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