Listowel Military Tattoo

Annual event remembering all Irish men and women that have fought in domestic or foreign forces from WWI to present day.

Listowel Military Tattoo is an annual event remembering all Irish men and women who sacrificed everything in the Line of duty during the great wars and serving for the United Nations. It is a 3-day festival around the May Bank Holiday Weekend.

Re-enactors will perform in a battle scene depicting a French town being invaded by German forces. Saturday evening a Military Colour Party will take part in a ceremony to honour Irish men and Irish women who gave their lives in the service of world peace.

The town will be liberated by Allied forces after a battle scene with the German forces. Sunday night a 1940's "Hangar" dance. Music by the fabulous Bombshell Belles.

A display by the The Irish Military Vehicles Group of some of the 30 vehicles held by their members will be held in the Square. A Vintage Car Rally starting at 11am in the Square and the cars will return to the Square after a 2 hour drive around North Kerry.

On Friday, re-enactors invade and set up their Living History display military encampment. This Living History display continues Saturday and Sunday - over 100 re-enactors are expected with military vehicles and equipment, who will be 'in character' for the duration of the event, patrolling the town giving it a unique wartime ambience.

Saturday is Irish Defence Forces Day with various displays by the Defence Forces and Coast Guard. On Saturday afternoon, a commemorative parade takes place with pipe bands and various military veteran organisations such as UK, US, French and Irish groups. A wreath laying ceremony follows the parade with several foreign Ambassadors attending. A flyover by the Irish Coast Guard just after the parade is planned.

On Sunday, there are two battle re-enactments with blank ammo, followed on Sunday night by a 1940s Style Dance in the Listowel Arms Hotel featuring 'The Bombshell Belles' who are a huge success each year, specialising in 1940s numbers. This is a costume dance with the audience dressed in military uniform/classic dress. During the weekend, there will also be several war themed historical lectures.

Lots of fun for the Children in the Square on Monday with a Slide and a Bouncy Castle, lots more will be announced later nearer the date.

Listowel has fast become the prime Irish location for the military re-enactment enthusiasts who are allowed use the town square and St John's Church for the mock gunfights.

"St John's is the real attraction for them as it has the sense of a small Belgian town church about it, making it perfect for the re-enactments," Military Tattoo organiser Denis O'Carroll said.

"Listowel needs something like this and the interest it's attracting to town is phenomenal. Everyone gets a boost out of it and the boutiques told us it was one of their best weekends last year as the men watched the action and the women went shopping!" Denis added.

Staff from 10 embassies in Ireland will attend and all are delighted to welcome the beautiful Bombshell Belles back to town as well, a trio of singers performing the hits of the WWII era.

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