The newly-surfaced streets of Youghal’s look set to play (g)host to a Halloween of unprecedented ghoulishness and entertainment this year. The Youghal Concerned Citizens groups’ ‘Halloween Spooktacular’ hopes to resurrect the annual ghoul-fest from the grave of anti-social mindlessness into which it has fallen in recent times. The group, hopes a new spirit will prevail, as it presents a wide range of activities intent on inciting family participation while preying mischievously on the intuitive fears and imaginings that ripple the neck hairs of the young and not so young alike.
The three-day list of events begins when a headless horseman somehow navigates his way through town on Friday night October 28th. The eerie evening also includes a presentation by Kay Donnelly on the trial of Florence Newton, a Youghal woman tried for witchcraft trial in 1661. The outcome of the trial, conducted by mortal who themselves sound decidedly scary, remains a mystery but the general conclusion is that she was subsequently hanged. The devil is in the details however!
Be afraid…be very afraid.
Saturday promises more chill thrills, with a display of torture machines that would delight many a teacher of the ‘old school,’ children’s storytelling in the hallowed atmosphere of St Mary’s Collegiate Church, fortune telling and a “ghoulish fancy dress street parade” through Youghal, guaranteed to add extra shiver to the spine as it passes vacated business premises where the ghosts of better times may yet linger. A presentation on paranormal investigations at the Old Imperial Hotel may hell to make frightening sense of it all, with fortune telling in Moby Dick’s advising in whether one should remain on for another pint or not.
Sunday bloody Sunday has storytelling in Condon’s florists, a pumpkin competition at Barry’s Lane and a treasure hunt amongst various unearthly pursuits.
YCC Secretary and local estate agent, Adrian Hyde says the Halloween Festival “is part of our on-going efforts to establish Youghal, not just as a summer attraction, but as a vibrant, family-friend resort all year round.”
Mr. Hyde says the response from the business and wider community to the YCC’s efforts has been “very supportive. I think everyone realises that we all have to pull together to secure a better future for our community and that is what is happening,” he states, adding that a subcommittee is also working on a “Dickens-themed Christmas for the Youghal.” Christmas only eight weeks away? Now that’s scary!!