Sustenance for Starving Artists at The Crown During Music Festival

The Crown Bar Manager Thomas Mann preparing for an influx of hungry musical artists over the October bank holiday weekend Patrick O’Keeffe Traditional Music Festival in Castleisland with staff members: Doreen Murphy, Cian Ring, Mr. Mann, Jennifer O’Connor and Sarah Lenihan. ©Photograph: John Reidy

With all the talk of starving artists in the months past, the mind wanders to thoughts of the famine pot or the soup kitchen – and with good cause.

The Crown Bar here in Castleisland is planning a ‘musicians’ soup kitchen’ for the duration of the Patrick O’Keeffe Traditional Music Festival weekend which is due to run from Friday, October 22nd to to Monday 25th inclusive.

The Crown has set up some soup kettles with stew and soup and will ladle it out to musicians in need of sustenance over their few days in Castleisland.

It’ll be free of charge and the musicians won’t even have to buy a drink to get the food.

Guinness Stew, Mutton Pie and Soda Bread

From 12 noon each day the following will be available: Saturday is Guinness Stew day and Sunday it’s Mutton Pie in a vegetable broth.

All the above will be dished out with soda bread in a bid to keep our hungry musicians on the move and in the mood.

If there’s anything left over, the stragglers on Monday can have it as they bid farewell to Castleisland for another year after what will hopefully be a great weekend.

A Gesture of Pure Decency

It is a gesture of pure decency by proprietor Joe Browne and manager Thomas Mann and so in keeping with the spirit of the house and its former owner Mrs. Betty Knight.

It is also the kind of gesture which created its accommodating, welcoming market town image for Castleisland over many years.

It’s a gesture sure to be appreciated by musicians after an unprecedented period away from the kind of gatherings and sessions from which they earned their livings.

Camper-Van Parking

Another new addition to this year’s festival is the provision of a camper-van parking area. This will be at the rear of the town centre Centra shop.

Known locally as the Poor-house Yard, it belongs to Walsh Brothers Electrical and it’s well lit and with surveillance camera coverage.

The cost is €50 for the weekend or €20 per night. Enquiries to:  086 1032436.

Information on the Patrick O’Keeffe Traditional Music Festival can be found on:

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