Soak up the early summer vibes at this year’s May Day festivities at the Ulster Folk & Transport Museum, Cultra, on Monday May 7, which marks the beginning of summer in the traditional Irish calendar.
To mark the ancient festival the Ulster Folk & Transport Museum will be open this May Day Bank Holiday; filled with plenty of music and dancing.
The Ulster Folk Museum will have activities taking place in the town and rural parts of the museum throughout the day. Visitors can hear about the traditional folklore of this time of year, enjoy searching for clues in the May Day Trail, play traditional street games, or catch a horse and carriage ride around Discovery Farm.
Visitors can also have a go at set dancing in the Ballycultra Parochial Hall as well as listen to traditional Irish music performed by young musicians from Ards Comhaltas Ceoltoiri Eireann.
May Day or Lá Bealtaine goes back to an Irish custom in which communities celebrated the arrival of summer, the season of growth and fertility, as well as protecting their livelihoods, and family from supernatural forces. The customs are also renowned across Northern Europe too.
Greg Borne, Visitor Services Manager, comments “May Day in Ireland was a very significant time in the rural calendar for farmers to prepare their land for growing crops and to ensure their animals were healthy after winter.
“It is very fitting that the Ulster Folk & Transport Museum celebrate this time honoured tradition with flowers beginning to bloom, fires in the hearths, food to share, music and dancing.”
The Ulster Folk & Transport Museum is open to the public Monday 7 May from 10am – 5pm. Normal admission prices apply.