Ireland’s first family festival of sport to be held at Sport Ireland National Sport Campus with more than 30 different sports on show
A host of Ireland’s sports stars from 15 different sports came together the Sport Ireland National Sports Campus today for the launch of Ireland’s first Family SportFest, being held there on Sunday 1st October.
The Family SportFest takes place during #BeActive European Week of Sport and will see the Sport Ireland National Sports Campus provide opportunities for people of all ages to come and see the world class facilities available on site as well as sample some of the 30 different sports and programmes that are accommodated at Ireland’s national sports facility .
Irish Boxing High Performance Director and former World Champion, Bernard Dunne, All-Ireland winner with Dublin, Alan Brogan, dual Dublin star Conal Keaney, Irish, Connacht and Leinster player, Mike McCarthy and athletics great, Catherina McKieran were just some of the 20 athletes who supported the launch of the family SportFest which the Campus hope will attract more than 2,500 people of all ages and abilities.
The Sport Ireland National Sport Campus want SportFest to become an annual event celebrating the variety of sports available in Ireland and promoting the many benefits of sports participation. It is hoped that SportFest will not just encourage increased participation in sport but also showcase the world class facilities that are the training base for some of Ireland’s leading sport stars, play host to the national championships of more than 20 sports and are also available for use by the public on a daily basis.
Along with getting the chance to trial the sports, children and adults will get the chance to meet a range of Irish sports heroes from the many different sports to which the Sport Ireland National Sports Campus is home. There will also be question and answer sessions with top athletes and coaches, a trophy zone with some of Ireland’s most famous silverware and a skill zone where parents and children alike can test their skills in a fun and non-competitive environment.
John Treacy, Chief Executive, Sport Ireland, said; - “The Family SportFest will give children and adults of all ages and abilities a chance to sample sports they may never have dreamt of trying, or never had the chance to. They will get a chance to meet some of Ireland’s top sports stars and lift some famous trophies. Hopefully Family SportFest will not only help to inspire the next generation of Irish stars but to also foster a lifelong love of sport and show them they are always welcome here at the Sport Ireland National Sports Campus, the Home of Irish Sport. That this celebration of sport can be held for the first time during the European Work of Sport, for which Sport Ireland is the national co-ordinator, is even better.”
Michael Murray, Chief Operations Officer, Sport Ireland National Sports Campus, said; “The Family SportFest is an opportunity to highlight the fact that the facilities and sports here are for everyone. We set out to build a National Sports Campus of which the country could be proud and SportFest provides an opportunity to tell people from all over Ireland that they are welcome to come and enjoy these world class facilities at the Sport Ireland National Sports Campus. It’s important to us that the general public understand that this is their Campus too. We have some of Ireland’s best-known athlete's training here every day and yet the Sport Ireland National Sports Campus is open to everyone to come in and enjoy. Since the National Indoor Arena opened in January we have hosted a wide variety of sporting programmes and events. We are particularly proud that over the summer we had kids from across the country using our facilities on offer to partake in many of the sports on offer here at the Home of Irish Sport.”.
Alan Brogan – “Sport has played a huge role in my life. I have been lucky to play in one of the world’s best stadia in Croke Park but the facilities here are also truly incredible. For so long in Ireland training facilities were back pitches with some form of cabin at the side for changing if you were lucky but what is available here at the Campus is world class. It would inspire you to get involved in sport and I would encourage as many people as possible to come and see the facilities here for themselves.”
Catherina McKiernan – “The facilities here at the Sport Ireland National Sports Campus are amazing. It is great to see that Ireland now has athletics facilities that are truly world class. I have got so much enjoyment from sport, for me it is running but I do believe there is a sport for everyone. SportFest is a great opportunity to sample a wide range of the sports that are available at the Campus and experience at first hand the incredible facilities available here.”
The campus boasts an impressive array of world class facilities including the Sport Ireland National Indoor Arena, the National Aquatic Centre, the National Modern Pentathlon Centre, the National Horse Sports Arena, the National Dry Land Diving centre and the Multi Sport Synthetic pitches, Turf Pitches, Campus Conference centre and the Sport Ireland National Cross Country Track. All of which are open for public use throughout the year.
The campus is also home to Sport Ireland Institute of Sport, FAI Headquarters, GAA Development Centre, and Irish Sports HQ, the home of 23 sport NGBs.
Many of Ireland’s top sports stars and teams regularly use the facilities at the Sport Ireland National Sports Campus. The Republic of Ireland Senior Men’s and Women’s football teams are based on the campus as is the Irish Boxing High Performance Programme, Swim Ireland’s National Training Centre as well as Sport Ireland Institute of Sport which provides sport science and other support services to Ireland’s High Performance Athletes.
The Sport Ireland National Sports Campus provides sporting opportunities for the whole family and for all ages and abilities in the community, with programmes and classes provided for toddlers right up to over 55s. The Campus runs market leading Academies for Swimming, Gymnastics, Athletics, Diving and Multi Sport along with hugely popular summer camps, fitness classes and birthday parties for kids.
The inaugural Family SportFest takes place at the Sport Ireland National Sports Campus on Sunday 1st October from 11am to 4pm. The event is open to the public of all ages and abilities. Tickets are priced at €10 for a family ticket (Two adults & up to three children), €5 per adult and €3 per child. For more information on the Family Sport Fest log on to www.nationalsportscampus.ie/familysportfest
Photos credit: Inpho Sports Photography