25 Jan, Monday
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Sunflowerfest 2015 set for Victorian Steampunk Menagerie theme


Sunflowerfest 2015 have announced their Victorian Steampunk Menagerie theme and two acts, Dreadzone and Senser, to perform at this year’s festival.

Organisers of Sunflowerfest, Northern Ireland’s leading ‘festival for everyone,’ have kicked off their 2015 season and are inviting guests to visit Tubby’s Farm this summer to reward themselves by taking part in the warm festival community, discover the very best music and cultural offerings hosted just 20 minutes from Belfast, and relax by getting back to nature on the beautiful scenic surroundings of the farm.

Sunflowerfest 2015 will include performances, attractions and experiences to be enjoyed by all ages and backgrounds this summer.  Taking place on Tubby’s Farm, Hillsborough, from 31st July to 2nd August 2015, this year’s festival will deliver the unique musical acts, kid-friendly activities, local crafts, alternative therapies, theatrical performances, camping and a number of new elements to the weekend to ensure big surprises for all guests.

This year’s theme of Victorian Steampunk Menagerie will be evident across all realms of Sunflowerfest, with even the festival’s familiar Finn McCool mascot dressed for the occasion, with top hat and pocket watch.  Guests can explore a Victorian carnival atmosphere, a costume competition for the best dressed guests, and even the performers will get in on the fun, with a Steampunk version of A Midsummer Night’s Dream performed in Belfast vernacular promising to be a huge draw in the Enchanted Glade.

Speaking on the growing strength of Sunflowerfest, Vanessa Magowan, event organiser said, “With more guests visiting Tubby’s Farm each summer to share in the many rewards Sunflowerfest has to offer, we strive to make each year different and more memorable than the one before.  This year we look forward to taking on our Victorian steampunk theme as well as working with our new charity partner, Habitat for Humanity and welcoming back some of our favourite organisations including RSPB, Ulster Wildlife and The Big Lunch in our schedule of events and activities. We are also delighted to welcome back artist Gus Leuder who will create a stunning invisible forest soundscape for all to experience in the Enchanted Glade.”

Adding to the spirit of community promoted at Sunflowerfest, organisers have announced that this year’s charity partner will be globally-recognised Habitat for Humanity Northern Ireland, who are bringing their ‘Shack Attack’ slum village to Sunflowerfest.  Fundraising teams of 4-6 people will enter the challenge by raising money for Habitat NI, building a shack out of scrap materials and sleeping out in it at the festival.  “Habitat NI’s Shack Attack is raising awareness of the 1.6 billion people in our world who do not have a decent place to live.

FESTIVAL TIME HAS ARRIVED AS SUNFLOWERFEST ANNOUNCES 2015 THEMEEvery day Habitat works where it matters most; at the heart of communities, beside families in need, offering a ‘hand-up’ out of poverty through simple, decent housing. A simple home changes lives. Families are healthier, children do better in school and parents’ income stabilises. Home is the start of it. We’re excited to be teaming up with Sunflowerfest on our 21 birthday to open the door to a brighter future for many more families in need.” said Jenny William, Chief Executive of Habitat NI.

With a growing number of families adding Sunflowerfest to their summer diaries, more activities have been confirmed to keep the kids busy. Led by Rachel Overton, director of the Kids’ Zone at Sunflowerfest, the Sunflowerfest team is offering hands-on, educational, and exciting activities for kids of all ages including interactive activities of art, craft, ceramics, sculpture, kids’ yoga, and workshops with Ulster Wildlife and RSPB, among others.  Joining in on the family-friendly fun, the Eden project brings The Big Lunch Neighbours Day idea to Sunflowerfest. Grainne McCloskey, The Big Lunch NI said, “Sunflowerfest is a unique chilled out weekend with something for everyone so we’re bringing a souk style communal space to share food, fun and friendship with some free steampunk flavoured activities to interest all ages.”

Music is the glue that unites Sunflowerfest’s guests together each summer, and this year the music remains as eclectic as the festival’s guests. From death metal to rock and folk to reggae, the wide range of acts confirmed vary across the festival’s huge Finn McCool main stage area, which will host headline acts including British dub, reggae, techno, folk and rock fusion band Dreadzone and rap rock group Senser, among other crowd favourites throughout the weekend, to the gorgeous surroundings of the pond stage and first-class performers hosted at the campfire stage and the Moot, the five stages across Sunflowerfest grounds will offer something new for everyone.

“Sunflowerfest prides itself on being a festival for everyone,” said Michael Magowan, festival organiser.  “We work hard year round to ensure that Tubby’s Farm remains a pristine piece of nature for all to enjoy over the festival weekend.  Bringing together the great outdoors with top notch musicians, artists, entertainers, and activities as well as the option to sleep beneath the stars in one of our many campgrounds, we really do believe that Sunflowerfest is good for you!”

Sunflowerfest also kindly acknowledges the assistance of Lisburn City Council in the production of this year’s event.

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