What’s on this weekend – 16th – 18th March 2018

Written by on March 16, 2018

St Patrick’s Day Celebrations

17 March/11am-4pm

Ulster Folk & Transport Museum, 153 Bangor Road, Holywood, BT18 0EU £: normal admission

T: 028 9042 8428

Enjoy a truly traditional St. Patrick’s Day with this unique festival of music, dance and food. Put a spring in your step by joining in the set dancing. Tap your toes to the traditional music sessions and admire the talent of the Irish dancers. Sample classic foods like soda bread, champ and drop scones before watching traditional

crafts like tweed weaving and basket making in action.


St Patrick’s Day at Exploris

Saturday 17 March

Exploris, The Ropewalk, Portaferry, BT22 1NZ £: included in admission

T: 028 4272 8062

W: www.explorisni.com

Join in with all the craic and banter this St Patrick’s with our underwater and reptilian friends.


St Patrick’s Day at Castle Espie

Saturday 17 March

Castle Espie Wetland Centre, Ballydrain Road, Comber, BT23 6EA £: Free

T: 028 9187 4146

W: www.wwt.org.uk/wetland-centres/castle-espie

Enjoy a fun St Patrick’s Day at Castle Espie!

Listen to tales of St Patrick in the Crannog between 1-3pm and get up close to slithering snakes as part of Karl Mantella’s Zoo-2-You Roadshow.

You can also have your facepainted and enjoy special themed treats at the Kingfisher Kitchen, while listening to traditional themed music.


Living History at Newtownards Priory

Saturday 17 March/12.00 – 16.30

Newtownards Priory, Court Street, Newtownards, BT23 7NY

£: Free

T: 028 9082 3207

The ruins of Newtownards Priory will once again come to life.

This unique Dominican priory is home for the day to the Prior and his Novice, medieval monks who invite you to try your hand with the quill pen and join them in this peaceful town gem.

The Priory is not generally open to the public.

Newtownards Priory: At the south east edge of Newtownards these substantial remains of a Dominican (Black) Friary founded in 1244 may be viewed.          They are the only ones of their type in Northern Ireland. Built by the Savage family the buildings were destroyed by Sir Brian O’Neill to prevent English soldiers using them.

Sir Hugh Montgomery restored the church in 1607 and added a small chapel but it fell into disrepair in the middle of the 18th-century.

Living History at Grey Abbey

Saturday 17 March/1 – 5pm

Grey Abbey, Main Street, Greyabbey, BT22 2NQ

£: Free

T: 028 9182 6846

Meet the “monks” at Grey Abbey and hear about medieval life and medicinal herbs with the Friends of the Abbey.

St Patrick’s Day at Pickie Fun Park

Saturday 17 March/ 9pm-4pm

Marine Gardens, Off Bangor Promenade, Bangor, BT20 5AG

£: Free

T: 028 9145 0746

Bring the whole family down to Pickie Funpark in Bangor for a fun-filled day out at the seaside. Look out for Pickie’s resident Leprechaun who will be driving the Pickie Puffer! Take part in the treasure hunt, 11am-3pm, for a chance to win a family pass for a year. The Irish theme continues in the Pickie Cafe with delicious warming Irish Stew and Wheaten bread meal deal and green slushies. Plus, themed arts and crafts.

St Patrick’s Day with the Ulster Orchestra

Saturday 17 March/7.30pm

Portico, Meeting House Street, Portaferry, BT22 1LE £: 10; under 25’s £5; under 16’s free

T: 028 4272 8808

W: porticoards.com

Join musicians from the Ulster Orchestra for an evening of music inspired by Ireland – perfect for St Patrick’s Day! Amongst the works performed will be Neil Martin’s The Helping Hand, inspired by Seamus Heaney’s poem Station Island and Lacrimae Rerum, a work dedicated to the poet. The Ulster Orchestra is delighted to perform at The Portico of Ards as part of the On Your Doorstep series of concerts. On Your Doorstep is a new initiative for the Ulster Orchestra, founded in its 50th Anniversary Season, which sees the orchestra play in as diverse a range of venues as possible across Northern Ireland.


North Down Birdwatching Club

Sunday 18 March/ 1.00pm-3.30pm

Crawfordsburn Country Park, Helen’s Bay, BT19 1JT £: 4


Pauline Campbell form CEDaR will be giving a talk on the work and importance of

recording all wildlife species. light lunch can be available afterwards £4, book

please dotbirdblakely@gmail.com


Rhodendron Ramble and Roast

Sunday 18 March/11.30am – 2.30pm

Mount Stewart, Portaferry Road, Newtownards, BT22 2AD £: 34.50

T: 028 4272 8387

W: nationaltrust.org.uk/mount-stewart

Tour the rhododendrons at Mount Stewart with Head of Gardens, Neil Porteous, followed by a rustic meal in the Mount Stewart Tea-Rooms. Booking essential.


Drumawhey Junction Railway

Sunday 18 March/1-5pm

60 Upper Gransha Road, Donaghadee, BT21 0LZ

£: Adult £2.50, child £2.00 per journey; £15.00 for family ticket giving

4 adult and 4 child journeys.

W: www.drumawhey.com

Build new memories with your family, visit Drumawhey Junction Railway, Ireland’s longest 71/4 inch railway, and experience the atmosphere of a full size traditional railway as it reopens for the first day of the 2018 season.

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