Bealtaine Festival


Bealtaine Festival Sligo 2019 banner  

The Bealtaine Festival is Ireland’s ground-breaking celebration of creativity in older age. Bealtaine means ‘May’ with all of its associations of fresh starts, emergence and renewal. Throughout the month in County Sligo there are opportunities for you to get involved, to try something different and simply enjoy yourself. It is a chance to meet people and to see what they have created in the last year, and it’s a chance to share traditions across the generations.  

For over a decade Sligo Arts Service in partnership with the HSE West has succeeded in providing older people with increased opportunities to participate in cultural activities and both organisations together with support from the national organisation Age and Opportunity is delighted to present this arts festival that specifically targets older people. 

The Bealtaine Festival Sligo has grown by including local arts and cultural venues, community and care settings and active retirement groups to facilitate a more active social life for older people who wish to broaden their horizons, meet new like minded people and get out more.  


Bealtaine Events Sligo 2019

Art Exhibition

May 1st – 31st 'Blue and Silver'

Mixed media art exhibition. Solo show by artist Deirdre Houston. Nazareth House Nursing Home, Atrium Gallery, Church Hill, Sligo.

May 1st - 31st Pillar Art Exhibition,

a collection of artwork prints by the St John’s Community Hospital Art Group. Ballymote Library, Teeling Street, Ballymote.

May 1st – 31st ‘The Kiosk’

a public art installation by Sarah Sexton. The disused petrol attendants kiosk sits outside Quigley's Bar in Collooney.  It has been brought back to life and re-imagined for Bealtaine Festival Sligo. This project is in partnership with Collooney Tidy Towns.

May 6th 7pm ‘Tríd an Doras’

an exhibition opening of paintings by participants from the Bealtaine Open Door Studio Art Group.  Exhibition runs until May 20th. Open Door Gallery, Rathcormac Craft Village, Branley’s Yard, Sligo.

May 10th 11.30am - 12.30pm Exhibition Opening of artwork

created by older adults who attend Tubbercurry Day Care Centre.  Teach Laighne, Humbert Street, Tubbercurry.

May 14th – 31st 'Blue and Silver'

Exhibition of artwork prints by artist Deirdre Houston. Primary Care Unit, Markievicz House, Sligo.


Workshops, Talks, Spoken Word, Song & Dance

May 9th 6pm Bealtaine Festival Tea Dance

in association with the Cos Cos Sean Nós Festival. Line-up includes, an Intergenerational Choir, The Silver Stars Music Group, Children’s Ceoil le Cheile, Latvian Dance Group and the “Altogether Now” Sing along.  Free event no booking required. Rathcormac Hall, Drumcliffe, Sligo.

Intergenerational Creative Board Gaming Workshops

May 11th 11am - 1pm

Ballymote Library, Teeling Street, Ballymote, Sligo.

May 25th 11am - 1pm

Sligo Central Library, Stephen Street, Sligo.

Grandparents, parents and children alike are encouraged to come join and play together with some great modern board-games.  This afternoon is hosted by Wayne O’Connor from Sligo Gaming Society and will be a great way to mingle and socialise between generations in a relaxed setting. Free workshop booking required, contact your local library. Ballymote 071 911 1669 Sligo Central Library 071 911 1675

May 12th 3pm Spoken Word & Stories Session

with writer Maura Gilligan. Free event no booking required. The Old School, Rathcormac, Sligo. 

May 14th 10.30am - 12pm Needle Felt Workshop

with textile designer, Sue Basler. Learn the craft of transforming wool using a barbed needle, all materials supplied. Free workshop places limited, booking required 071 911 1675

Sligo Central Library, Stephen Street, Sligo. Email:

May 21st 2.30pm - 4.30pm Memoir Creative Writing Workshop

with Mr. Gerry Boland.  Free event places limited, booking required 071 911 1675 Sligo Central Library, Stephen St, Sligo.

All events are FREE to attend.
For further information, contact Catherine 086 842 4969



© Sligo County Council Arts Department, City Hall, Quay Street, Sligo, Co. Sligo, Ireland tel: +353 (0) 71 911 4465