The Limerick Lifelong Learning Festival made an inspirational ninth return to the city and county this year in April with over 200 free events and activitiestaking place for the enjoyment and learning of all. There really was something to entertain and involve people of all ages, interests and backgrounds during the week long festival. Organisers of the festival are helping to bridge the gap between all communities in Limerick through learning. Bridging the Gap, this year’s theme, links young and old, rural and urban, returning to learning and welcoming new communities, and runs alongside the festival’s annual tagline of ‘Communities, Connecting, Learning’. The theme also symbolises the ‘3 Bridges’ walking route in Limerick.
The launch for the 2019 Festival took place in Adare Heritage Centre, where Patrick Fitzgerald of Limerick Mental Health Association welcomed Mayor of Limerick City and County Council, Cllr James Collins, who launched the event. Seamus O’Connor of Limerick City and County Council also spoke at the event, as well as two of the Learning Limerick Ambassadors. Mayor James Collins speaking at the event said “Learning is never a wasted experience. It helps us to grow intellectually as well as physically. It allows us to broaden our horizons. The Limerick Lifelong Learning Festival brings together the joy and wonder of learning for all those who participate. It is done in a way that eases the learner in, making them feel involved in the whole process. I would encourage everyone to take a look at the programme of events. There is something there for everyone. I would also like to say thank you to the steering group, who have worked tirelessly down through the years to make the Festival such a success. I’m particularly proud of the key achievements of Learning Limerick in recent years including the UNESCO Learning City Award 2017 which has underpinned and endorsed the work that is being carried out.”
Learning is promoted as something that is fun and enjoyable, with events including performances, taster sessions, tours, displays, lectures, walks, demonstrations and workshops. The events take place right across Limerick in a variety of indoor and outdoor venues, including in libraries, museums, castles, colleges, resource, family and community centres, parks and on the streets. There are hundreds of events on varied topics ranging from drama, business and entrepreneurship, maths and science to guided tours, exhibitions and workshops, all across the city and county.