St. Patrick’s Festival Kilkenny plans not only to fill your days but for 2024 has a host of evening activities to keep the fun going ! Along with Kilkenny Tradfest’s full music line up and free music trail in pubs and venues across the city, St. Patrick’s Festival Kilkenny will have host of family friendly activities that will keep you entertained as the sun goes down.

On Thursday the 14th of March take an enchanting tour of Kilkenny with Nevin Cody of Shenanigans Walks on the Kilkenny Tales & Legends Evening Walking Tour. Learn about curious ‘Kilkenny Cat’ tales, historic witches and local legends, while getting a new perspective on the city at night. This short tour promises to be an entertaining, fun and informative adventure with a touch of magic and plenty of Shenanigans!  Followed by a free Kilkenny Tradfest Music Trail gig, it is the perfect intro to Kilkenny city and a lovely way to end a day or start your night out ! Tours cost €12 + BF and take place at 7.30pm and 8.30pm on Thursday and Friday and 5pm and 6pm on Saturday 16th.

Also on Thursday the Cherokee Trail High School Band will be playing in the beautiful setting of St. Canice’s Cathedral at 8pm. Taking their first trip “across the pond”, their performance is based on music from across America, including jazz standards from the big band era, a Hoedown, musicals, American folk tunes, and of course, a march by John Philip Sousa. This is a free event but booking is required. 

While For those looking for something a little different the Pop Up Gaeltacht will take place in Bollard’s Bar at 8pm as part of Seachtain na Gaeilge le Energia and Kilkenny Tradfest! Everyone is welcome to join for Irish conversation and fun along with live music on the night. Bígí linn don chraic agus don chomhrá – agus beidh ceol beo le cloisteáil ann ar an oíche freisin!

On Friday the 15th, the Kilkenny Tales and Legends Evening Walking Tour continues. While in the Festival Tent the Rhythm Makers Drumming Workshop is tailored for Adults at 6.30pm. Hosted by Jeremy Hickey, (R.S.A.G, Rhythm Makers & Music Generation). Drumming workshops are a natural team building activity and promote inclusion, reflection and mindfulness. These small sessions cost €5+ BF and have limited availability.

For the young musicians there is the Youth Trad Session in the Home Rule Club. Hosted by the Kilkenny Pipers Club the session is open to young people aged between 12 and 18 years of age. There is no need to book. All are welcome. Just come along and join in!

For those looking for a bit more of excitement Courtney’s Daredevil Circus will be raising the roof of the Big Top on The Closh at 7.30pm. If you can’t make that show, don’t worry, the circus is in town for the weekend!

On Saturday the 16th March the real fun begins with the Pyro Collective spectacular Fire Show! Promising an energetic and raw spectacle with fire performers and drummers this will be Pyro Collective’s first appearance in Kilkenny, having previously performed at Púca Festival and Forrest Fest. With two show times at 7.30pm and 9pm there is no excuse to miss this high energy show!  Tickets are €5+BF or €18 for a family of 4 and the show will last approximately 20mins. Fuel up pre and post show at the Festival Market on the Mayors Walk and Parade Plaza. This special late-night market will stay open till 9pm. Giving you plenty of opportunity to make a night of it – enjoying tasty treats, riding the Big Wheel or Vintage Carousel and generally soaking in the festival atmosphere!

Finally on Sunday the 17th St. Patrick’s Day will end in style with a Fireworks Display in Kilkenny Castle Park. See the skies above the city light up in a spectacular 8-10min display. Ticket holders to the Castle Park will have the best view in the beautiful grounds of Kilkenny Castle. Tickets are €4 + BF or €18 for a family of 5. This event always sells out so secure your tickets now!

There are not just ticketed activities to enjoy but throughout the festival a number of buildings around the city will be lit up in green as part of the global greening for St. Patrick’s Day. Take a stroll around and enjoy the ambiance and the beauty of the city’s medieval streets.

Kilkenny is part of a pilot scheme that appointed a Night Time Economy Advisor. Promoting diverse social, cultural and economic activity occurring during specified evening and night time hours. It balances the needs of the inter related communities that co-exist to bring it to life and create a special sense of shared place.