350,000 people have taken to the streets of Sligo town in the annual gathering for the Fleadh Cheoil or music festival. (See YouTube video below from RTE, Ireland’s national broadcast station.)
Dedicated Irish music and dance lovers from as far away as South Korea, Australia and the US gathered in the western town for the annual lollapalooza of Irish music.
It is estimated that ten percent of the crowds came from outside Ireland.
The fleadh was opened by Irish President Michael D. Higgins and crowds poured into the town every day peaking this weekend.
Pubs did a roaring trade and Irish was the language of many.
Up to ten thousand took part in the Irish music and dancing contests and the streets of the town were jammed with musicians, dancers and spectators.
Even the Irish weather, notoriously fickle co-operated as the throngs celebrated and enjoyed the late summer festival.