A Special Line Up For Cork Traveller Pride Week 2017

Megan O'Sullivan, Ellen Burke, Maddison McDonagh and Taylor Burke at this launch of this year’s Cork Traveller Pride Week. Picture: Clare Keogh

With the Irish government formally recognising Irish Travellers as an ethnic group in March 2017, this year’s Cork Traveller Pride Week is set to be a very special celebration of Traveller culture and heritage. Running from 12th June to 18th June 2017, in locations across Cork city, Cork Traveller Pride week welcomes the public to join in the celebrations and attend many free events.

The week long celebrations, which are co-0rdinated by Cork Traveller Visibility Group (TVG) and Cork Traveller Womens Network and supported by Cork City Council, will begin on Monday 12th June with the launch of the redesigned Traveller Culture exhibit at Cork Public Museum in Fitzgerald’s Park. The exhibit, which will be open to the public throughout the year, includes a full size barreltop wagon, flat cart and miniature caravan and other new interpretive material.

As well as Traveller Ethnicity workshops on Tuesday 13 June and the launch of “Travellers and Higher Education: Supporting Progression” Report on Thursday 15 June, a new wagon puppet stage, handcrafted by the TVG Men’s woodwork group, will be unveiled at the TVG Goras Community Childcare Centre for the Happy Talk puppet show. Happy Talk works with parents, families, teachers and crèche to provide support and training on language development in a fun and engaging way.

Cork Travellers are inviting everyone, particularly families, to join the Traveller Ethnicity and Heritage Celebrations on Saturday 17 June in Fitzgerald’s Park from 12 to 3pm, when the people of Cork will have an engaging opportunity to learn about Irish Traveller’s history, culture, traditions and crafts.  Activities will include fortune telling, traditional paper flower making workshops, tin-making, traditional horse husbandry and traditional cake bread tasting as well as Cant (gammon) language workshop for children and parents.  There will also be a fully costumed re-inaction of daily life for Travellers in a traditional roadside camp. 

To mark the Irish government’s recognition of Traveller ethnicity on 1st March 2017, a hawthorn tree will be planted in Fitzgerald’s Park during the celebration.

This year’s Cork Traveller Pride Week really is a special one for our Cork Travellers, and one that deserves the support of the people of Cork.  For more information, see Cork Traveller Visibility Group on Facebook.