Scrolling through all the programme's of the 2013 Islay Festival I get the impression that this years festival will be bigger than ever before, so if you have plans to come to the festival but haven't booked yet I suggest not to wait until the last minute. Most accommodations are fully booked but there appear to be some accommodations with availabilities. Have a look at the late availabilities page or contact the Tourist Information Office in Bowmore via this link.
Due to the volume of traffic Calmac announced extra ferries on Thursday 23rd & Friday 24th May 2013: 12:30 dep Port Ellen (arrive Kennacraig 14:50) & 15:15 dep Kennacraig (arrive Port Ellen 17:35). The afore mentioned additional sailings have been added to the Calmac web site for customer on-line booking purposes. For enquiries & Reservations you can also call 0800 066 5000.
The Programme [PDF Download] for the Islay Festival of Malt and Music 2013 is as follows:
Friday 24th May:
Opening Concert, Bowmore Hall 8pm â€“ 10:30pm Â£5
Alan Anderson - Whisky Comedian at Ardbeg. (Whisky for Dafties) 8pm â€“ 10pm Â£15
Saturday 25th May:
Lagavulin Distillery Open Day from 10am
Clootie Dumpling Ceilidh. Portnahaven Hall. Flockhart Band & Local Artists. 8pm â€“ 12. Â£7.50 Licensed.
Sunday 26th May:
Bruichladdich Distillery Open Day from 12:30pm. Festival Bus from Port Ellen.
Port Ellen Maltings Programme starts. See Lagavulin programme for details.
Open Bowling Competition, Bridgend Bowling Club. 2pm
Monday 27th May:
Caol Ila Distillery Open Day. From 10am (Early shift tour 7am)
Ceilidh Dancing Classes, Columba Hall, Port Ellen. 2pm - 4pm
Whisky Nosing Night. Ramsay Hall, Port Ellen. Nosing between 8pm â€“ 9pm followed by Ceilidh with Flockhart Band and Local Artists. Â£15 Licensed.
Tuesday 28th May:
Laphroaig Distillery Open Day from 10am
Folk night at Lagavulin Malt Mill. Guest Artist Eric Faulkner 8pm â€“ 11pm Â£10 Licensed
Wednesday 29th May:
Bowmore Distillery Open Day From 10am
Islay Ales Open Day, Islay House Square, Bridgend from 11am
Texas Scramble at the Machrie Golf Course 6pm Â£5
Ewan Callinson Magic show followed by music by Eric Faulkner, White Hart Hotel 9pm â€“ 12 Â£10
Thursday 30th May:
Jura Distillery Open Day from 10am
Kilchoman Distillery Open Day from 10am
BlÃ r (Battle of Gruinart) involving all Islay choirs, Islay Pipe Band, Bowmore Hall. Two Performances 6:30 pm and 8pm Â£10
Friday 31st May:
Bunnahabhain Distillery Open Day from 10am
Ceilidh Dancing Classes at the Columba Hall, Port Ellen 2pm - 4pm
Open air gig at Laphroaig Distillery Trail West & Flash Harry (Queen Tribute Band) 9pm â€“ 1am Â£15
Saturday 1st June:
Ardbog Distillery Open Day from 10am
Final Fling, Ramsay Hall. The Wee Man from Strabane is back! Hugo Duncan with the Playboys. 9pm â€“ 1am Â£15.
Sunday 2nd June:
Open Bowling Competition, Port Ellen Playing Fields 2pm. Putting Competition for under 12s.
To buy tickets for the music events visit the FÃ¨is ÃŒle payments website at www.islayinfo.com/festival-payments. Tickets for distillery events & tastings can be bought from the individual distilleries. Also adviced is to grab yourself a copy of this week's Ileach for more detailed programme info!
2013 Gaelic Events:
Gaelic Song Workshops with Katherine MacLeod
We are delighted to welcome Katherine back to Islay to lead workshops in Gaelic song. No prior knowledge of Gaelic needed. Workshops will be held at ICCI: Mon, Tues, Thurs & Fri 10am - 12noon Wed 2pm to 4pm Â£2 per person
Traditional Music Workshops Introduction to Tin Whistle
A chance to pick up some instrumental skills from Katherine and perhaps hone a wee tune to share at our CÃ¨ilidh. Workshops will be held at ICCI: Mon & Wed 2pm to 4pm Â£2 per person
Gaelic Song Play Sessions with Islay & Jura Toy Library
Katherine will be in attendance at these sessions of Gaelic song for the wee ones! Wednesday 29th 10am to 12noon Ramsay Hall Port Ellen Thursday 30th 2pm to 4pm at ICCI Free
Gaelic Guided Walk
ICCI would like to invite you to join Anna NicGuaire on a walk to Gartbreck. This walk explores the relationship between language and landscape, providing an insight into the Islandâ€™s rich culture. Wed 29th 2pm sharp. Meet Bowmore Square at 1.45pm
As part of our GÃ idhlig BheÃ² program, we hold monthly CÃ¨ilidh sessions and this monthâ€™s falls during the FÃ¨is. Katherine MacLeod will lead this informal evening of music, song & stories, with an open invitation to anyone who would like to come along and perform. A perfect opportunity to put into practice what youâ€™ve picked up at the workshops. Wednesday from 7.30pm Teas and home baking. Free.
Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or on + 44 (0) 1496 810818 for further information. Tickets available to purchase from Tuesday 7th May at Port Ellen and Bowmore Post Office
Links to Websites & Social Media
Official Islay Festival page on Facebook
Rachel's MacNeill's Festival Page
@islaywhiskyfest - Islay Whisky Festival on Twitter
@blarile - Blar Music Event on Twitter
www.theislayfestival.co.uk/index.php - Official Festival website
www.ileach.co.uk - Islay's fortnightly newspaper
www.islayinfo.com - For all things Islay