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Dublin: 9 °C Wednesday 22 October, 2014

The Lisdoonvarna Matchmaking Festival is going gay

Lisdoonvarna – The Outing is putting a ‘new twist on old traditions’.

Image: theouting.ie

LISDOONVARNA HAS BEEN a destination for people looking for love for 150 years, but up until now it’s been a largely straight affair.  This year that’s all about to change, as Lisdoonvarna – The Outing hits County Clare.

For the first time, the traditional dating festival will open with a weekend specifically for gay and lesbian people, complete with a schedule of events which places drag shows beside céilís.

Event Director, Donal Mulligan said:

Traditional Irish events like céilí dances have had it right for hundreds of years,they’re a perfect way to meet new people in a lively, comfortable and fun atmosphere. We’re taking the best of old Ireland – music, dancing and matchmaking – and putting it together with the variety of entertainment on offer in the LGBT community.

The weekend will be presided over by Panti, the ‘Drag High-Queen of Ireland’, but there will also be some old school expertise on the site.

Fourth generation matchmaker, and Lisdoonvarna mainstay, Willie Daly will be there, ready to bring couples together, saying:

Matchmaking has always been about love.

The weekend will also aim to raise awareness of and funding for BelongTo, who work to assist LGBT youth across the country via educational campaigns, support groups, and other endeavours.

Tickets at €199 per person sharing, and comprising a 3-star hotel stay and access to the full program of festival events at The Outing’s Matchmaking Weekend, go on sale next week.  Details here.

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