Moby Dick Festival 2012 – 16-18th March, Youghal, Co. Cork
This St. Patrick’s weekend (16th-18th March) the seaside town of Youghal will host their first ever Moby Dick Festival. A voluntary group from the town on the South Coast of Ireland have rekindled relations with New Bedford with this fun filled festival. Youghal was chosen by Huston when he filmed Moby Dick the movie as the town in the 1950′s scenically mirrored New Bedford in the late 1880’s. The quays in Youghal still stand nearly identical to the quayside in New Bedford during the height of the whaling trade in the late 1880’s. As a historical town, these quays have been preserved so Youghal is now set to capitalise on the striking similarities. “If the people of New Bedford want to see first-hand what their quays and docks looked like they just need to come to Youghal” says Jimmy Flanagan of the Youghal4All group
The Moby Dick festival will kick off on Friday 16th March with a web broadcast discussion on the merits of Moby Dick by author Herman Melville. This will be available free to all. The event will take place at 5 p.m. Irish time to coincide with the school morning in New Bedford. Many US schools and colleges have registered to ‘attend’ the online event. Anyone interested can log onto www.youghalcc.com view the discussion and contribute via messaging. Dr Laurie Robertson-Lorant from Bridgewater State University and a leading Melville enthusiast, Mr Tim Severn, renowned adventure author and Mr John Stack, seafaring novelist, will be the keynote speakers at the event.
Also during the weekend the extras who took part in the film will share their memories of Gregory Peck and the film’s entourage who came to Youghal, show memorabilia and photographs and read from the novel. Leading Irish actors (such as Pat Shortt) and directors (like Séan O Neil and Tommy Slattery) will animate Melville’s novel. There will be children’s events and lots of maritime activity during the festival from talks on the marine history of Youghal to demonstrations on sea rescues and safety. The legendary Youghal St. Patrick’s Day parade is sure to incorporate the Moby Dick theme in Youghal and promises to be a lively affair. Full details and program on www.youghalcc.com . With such a great program planned Youghal is set to welcome many visitors for the weekend.
Ruth Vance, PRO, Youghal4All