Belfast’s St Patrick’s Day celebrations are primed to be high energy this year – and you’re invited to come and join the party!
From 11.30am on Saturday, March 17, the streets will be awash with colour. A vibrant parade themed ‘Global Belfast’ will leave from Royal Avenue, travelling along a new route through Castle Junction and along Donegall
Place, before snaking its way around Belfast City Hall, and then returning along the same route to finish on Royal Avenue.
A free concert at Custom House Square, headlined by former JLS member Aston Merrygold, kicks off at 1.30pm and will run until 4pm.
Speaking at the launch of Belfast’s St Patrick’s Day celebrations, Lord Mayor Nuala McAllister said: “I really can’t wait for this year’s St Patrick’s Day celebrations in Belfast, because I know that thousands of people of all ages, backgrounds and nationalities will be joining in the fun.
“The theme for my year in office is ‘Global Belfast’ and the wonderful Beat Carnival have worked so hard with their many community partners to create an incredible parade which illustrates that theme, as well as the diversity
of the city we love, and our people. Make sure you don’t miss it!”
Aston Merrygold will headline the free Custom House Square concert and is sure to dazzle with not just his voice, but his incredible dance moves. Strictly Come Dancing star – and now touring musician, Aston’s debut single ‘Get Stupid’ went platinum and his feel good last single ‘Precious’ featured Shy Carter and Grammy Award winning beatboxer Rhazel.
Q Radio is the council’s media partner and popular radio host Eoghan Quigg will compere the concert.
Robert Walshe, Managing Director and Head of Programming at Q Radio, said: “Q Radio is delighted to be the official media partner of this year’s St Patrick’s Day celebrations.
“Dedicated to broadcasting local content for local people, as well as being the first for news, sport and weather across Northern Ireland, it’s natural that we support one of Northern Ireland’s largest outdoor events. We look forward to what promises to be a spectacular celebration of culture and community on 17 March.”
Alongside Aston, award winning modern Irish dancing group Slide Step will wow the crowds with their powerful, cutting edge contemporary movement and a whole new take on the art form. Belfast based Irish Festival Dancing School Tír Na n-Óg, which recently won the NI senior team title for a fifth year running, will deliver a heart stopping performance.
Urban artists Tanaka, winner of the PanArts Young Singer Songwriter Competition 2016, and JORD will inject a range of colourful influences ranging from R&B and AfroBeat to Pop and Folk to the concert.
Festival favourites Pure Blarney’s unique brand of electro-acoustic folk rock and local trad band the Rare Aul Stuff are bound to get the crowd moving the moment they step on stage.
There’ll also be Global Belfast and St Patrick’s Day themed arts and crafts, a range of walkabout, street theatre acts and face painters to keep even the youngest revellers entertained. Hot food, soft drinks, sweet treats and more will be on sale from a range of traders.
Entry to the concert is on a first come first served basis. Alcohol is strictly forbidden and other terms and conditions apply. For more information, visit www.belfastcity.gov.uk/stpatricks