One of Ireland’s coolest family events, Footsteps in the Forest is back this year at Slieve Gullion Forest Park for a weekend of enchantment and mystery on Saturday 3 and Sunday 4 June 2017.

Last years inaugural festival won the 2016 Heritage Council of Ireland, Cool for Kids award. The event saw thousands of children spell bound as they wove their way through the enchanted forest, encountering mythical creatures gathering for a high summer meeting.  This year they’re back and a new quest has presented itself.  As they gather on the mountain once more, news reaches the forest of a new challenge to the peaceful order.

Council Chairperson, Councillor Gillian Fitzpatrick and Andy Patterson from Tourism NI launch this year's Footsteps in the Forest at Slieve Gullion Forest Park in the company of mythical characters from the enchanted forest.
Council Chairperson, Councillor Gillian Fitzpatrick and Andy Patterson from Tourism NI launch this year's Footsteps in the Forest at Slieve Gullion Forest Park in the company of mythical characters from the enchanted forest.

This year’s festival will hold a connection to Wake the Giant, in Warrenpoint at the end of August and will tell the tale of giant, Finn McCool and the magic rings of Gullion. The forest fairies and mountain trolls themselves will take visitors on a magical treasure hunt as the story comes to life around them.

Council Chairperson, Councillor Gillian Fitzpatrick said, “Last year’s Footsteps in the Forest was a fantastic event and a worthy award winner and I am excited to discover what the mythical creatures of Slieve Gullion Forest has in store for us in June.  This event is to the fore of sharing our unique ‘Mountains, Myths and Maritime’; the elements identified through our recently launched Tourism Strategy that are the unique selling points of our area.   Events such as this act as a great attractor of visitors to the district and generate a very significant annual contribution, circa £8m, for the local economy.”

The festival will have something for fantasy lovers of all ages.  As well as a huge cast of magical creatures, it will have an abundance of family fun wherever you turn. Take part in children’s craft workshops in sword and shield making, watch a real blacksmith at work and try your hand at wood turning and other fascinating crafts. There’s traditional Irish music and delicious foods from local artisan producers and so much more.  

Footsteps in the Forest is a free event but booking is essential for the guided theatrical performances through ringofgullion.org 

For further information visit ringofgullion.org or contract the Festival Office at 02830313170