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What’s On In Tyrone – March 5/6

Penrose in full flight

Penrose in full flight

SATURDAY

Brocagh Spring Festival

Saturday 5th (12pm) sees the annual Brocagh Spring Festival, a pagan celebration dating back thousands of years when the first settlers in Ireland headed up to Brocagh for a rake about. This year, famous Brocagh exports including Tom McGurk (RTE), Gerry Davidson (finished third in a 3-mile race in Liverpool during the 80s) and ex-president Mary Robinson (passed through Brocagh by mistake in 1991) will be there to sign autographs and smile in photos. Other activities conclude ‘blind man’s bluff in the buff‘, “staring competitions” and “drink a gallon of cider and score from the 45m line“. Festivities conclude with the traditional dance between two self-confessed virgins between the ages of 20 and 30. Organisers have announced that Kitty O’Neill is now 31 so a new woman must come forward.

Loughmacrory Baby-Jumping Competition

This controversial event is probably in its last year as the European Courts are closing in. All babies taking part win a week’s supply of Farley Rusks. Last year’s record of 8 babies is the target for competitors Larry Penrose (above), Hillary Lily and Dan Barr. First jump 11am.

SUNDAY

Ardboe Fish-Swallowing Festival

The first year for this weekend extravaganza, the fish-loving community in Ardboe have come up with a unique way to celebrate their talents by holding a fish-swallowing competition with the unique take that the fish must still be alive. No one really knows how this will work at all but it’s sure to attract massive crowds to the loughshore at 3pm Sunday for the eel section.

Gortin-Glen Nude Bathing

Bare men and women here on Sunday

Bare men and women here on Sunday

The famous Gortin Glen Forest Park hosts their nude-bathing evening this Sunday. Men and women from as far as Glenelly will take part in the hope that the magical Gortin waters will cure all warts and other things like that. Come along to cheer on the bare bathers from 7pm.

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