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Entertainment and the Arts : Film : Irish Adventure Film Festival Last Updated: 7, Dec 2018 - 12:17

Irish Adventure Film Festival
By Graham Clarke
7, Dec 2018 - 12:03

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Now going in to the 7th year of success the Irish Adventure Film Festival is where madness meets reality only to be projected on to the big screen. If Westport has established itself as the Riviera of Ireland, then this festival could be described as Ireland's adventure industry's answer to the Cannes Film Festival. Attracting over 150 films from 34 countries,crammed in to two days of viewing pleasure. The festival plays host and homage to the ‘Best of the Best' when it comes to adventure films, stories and adventurers.
Blind Kayaker_Film-The Weight of Water

All films will be projected on to the Big Screen at the the W-Cinema in the heart of Westport on the Saturday 30th and Sunday 31st March 2109. The sole focus of this years festival will be to showcase as many excellent films as possible with the to hope to inspire more people get outside and live their own adventures no matter how big or small.

The 2019 festival has been extended to include Friday night (March 29th 2019), for a new and exciting awards event - the Irish Adventurer of the Year Awards. The Irish Adventurer of the Year Awards will be a show of special recognition to adventurers, weekend warriors and anyone with a passion for the outdoors who has completed a notable adventure in the last two years. It's open to individuals and teams alike.

Speaking about the Irish Adventurer of the Year Awards, Jarlath Mc Hale, one of the festivals organisers, told us that "one of the festivals guiding principles is to inspire people to undertake their own adventures. No matter how small. This awards event is a way for us to recognise and celebrate those ordinary adventurer's among us who have done inspiring things. It also gives us an opportunity to share those stories with the greater outdoor community in Ireland. The awards are a new part to the festival".

There are six categories for anyone to enter and the winners will be chosen by an panel of judges currently working or involved in the outdoor industry. The awards are open to anyone to enter and anyone can nominate anyone or even nominate themselves.

The Categories are:

  • Best Adventure by Land
  • Best Adventure by Water
  • Best Microadventure
  • Most Inspiring Adventure
  • Best Regional Adventure (Ulster, Munster, Leinster & Connacht)
  • Best Overall Adventure

Film Liv Along the Way

The Awards ceremony will be held on Friday the 29th with the venue to be confirmed. The after party will follow in Bridge St Bar on Main Street Castlebar.

For more information about the awards and about the criteria of each category visit and click in to the link to the ‘Irish Adventure Awards'.

Festival director Graham Clarke told us that "We are overwhelmed by the quality and volume of film entries once again this year. The festival programme is always highly competitive, with only 13%-15% of films submitted making the final selection for the weekend. Helping us make that decision is a nine person selection committee based in Ireland, Wales, France and Alaska.Currently there's over 65 hours of film submissions to watch. Overall it's a an epic way to spend dark winter evenings!".

He goes on to inform us that due to high volume and quality of entries their is always a lot of pressure to screen as many as possible. For this reason the festival will concentrate solely on showing films and for the first time since it inauguration it will not host any keynote speakers. Instead the focus will be on getting either the film maker or the stars of the show to introduce their work. Many of the films are chosen on a first screening basis so this is very exciting as you will not find them anywhere prior to the festival.

Speaking about the festival. Leon McCarron, a noted Northern Irish adventurer, author, and filmmaker had this to say:

"There are a few good festivals in Ireland, but this is my favourite. It's run by good people, and attended by the same". The adventure film festival has one guiding principle; to inspire people to get outside and undertake their own adventures, no matter how small.

For more details visit

Tickets available online and at box-office.

Festival Program:

Friday 29th March 2019: Awards Ceremony 7pm-10pm

Saturday 30th March 2019 : Film Screenings at W-Cinema Westport, Co. Mayo

Sunday 31st March 2019: Film Screenings W-Cinema Westport, Co. Mayo


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