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Free Family Events at National Museums of Ireland this Summer

Did you know the three National Museum of Ireland musems all run fantastic free events for kids and families? Here is a round up of the free family events at National Museums of Ireland this summer.


National Museum of Ireland: Decorative Arts & History, Collins Barracks

National Museum of Ireland

Film: ‘The Battle of Somme’

Sat 2nd July from 11.30am – 1pm – introduced by Dr.David Murphy

Saturday 9th July from 2.30pm – 4pm – introduced by Dr. Jennifer Wellington

Saturday 23rd July from 11.30am – 1pm – introduced by Lar Joye

Suitable for Adults & Children 12+

‘The Battle of Somme’ was released in September 1916 and was seen by more than 20 million people in Britain and Ireland. It was hoped that the film would rally civilian support for the war and highlight a great victory. View this restored film with a short introduction from historian Dr. David Murphy/Dr. Jennifer Wellington. Presented in association with the Imperial War Museum, UK. Running time 77 minutes. No booking required, places allocated on first come basis 15 minutes before start.

Historical Reenactment: The Battle of the Somme

Sun 3rd July from 2:30-5pm

Suitable for All Ages

Join Lord Edward’s Own Re-enactment group in marking the centenary of the Battle of the Somme. See replica uniforms, equipment and arms that were used at the Battle of the Somme 100 years ago. No booking required.

Public Tour: Proclaiming a Republic

Thursday 7th July from 1-1:45pm
Thursday 21st July from 1 – 1.45pm
Sunday 31st July from 3pm – 3.45pm
Suitable for All Ages

Join a family-friendly tour of the new Proclaiming a Republic: The 1916 Rising exhibition, looking at some of the highlights of the Museum’s extensive Easter Week collection. No booking required, places allocated on a first-come basis 15 minutes before tour starts.

Drop-in Activity: Wish You Were Here! Art Workshop for Families

Thursday 14th July from 2pm – 4.30pm

Suitable for Families with children 7-12

Draw, collage or embroider your own postcard from the past inspired by your favourite objects in the museum’s collections. Drop-in activity with art materials provided. No booking required.

Public Tour: Proclaiming a Republic

Thursday 4th 1-1.45pm, Thursday 18th 1-1.45pm

Join a family-friendly tour of the new Proclaiming a Republic: The 1916 Rising exhibition, looking at some of the highlights of the Museum’s extensive Easter Week collection. All Ages. Tour. No booking required, places allocated on a first-come basis 15 minutes before tour starts.

Hands on History

Sunday 14th 3-4pm

A chance to explore some of the artefacts from the Museum’s collection of objects for handling with Museum educators – a fascinating drop-in handling session for all ages. Drop-in Activity. All Ages. No booking required.

Hello Delia Murphy

Saturday 20th 2pm

‘Hello Delia Murphy’ profiles the songs, story and family photos of the iconic Delia Murphy of ‘The Spinning Wheel’ fame. Presented and performed by her niece Carmen Cullen. With musical accompaniment by Gerry Anderson. Performance. All Ages. Booking required.

Heritage Week at Collins Barracks

Saturday 20th-Sunday 28th During Opening Hours

Drop in to Collins Barracks during Heritage Week, from 22nd – 30th August 2016, to enjoy an exhibition or take part in a tour, talk or workshop. During the week, pick up the Heritage Trail, a free resource for families to explore the Museum, looking for examples of Irish heritage on the way! All Ages.

Barracks Life: People and Places map-making Workshop

Tuesday 23rd August 2-3pm

During Heritage Week, find out about the people and events that have shaped Collins Barracks over the years. Create a take-home map while uncovering the fascinating history of the Barracks. Workshop for families with children aged 7-12. Booking required

Heritage Week Tour: Proclaiming a Republic

Sunday 28th August 3-3.45pm

Join a family-friendly tour of the new Proclaiming a Republic: The 1916 Rising exhibition, looking at some of the highlights of the Museum’s extensive Easter Week collection. Tour. All Ages. Booking required

National Museum of Ireland: Archaeology, Kildare Street, Dublin 2

national-museum-archaeology_1

Drop-In Activity: Summer Sun Discs

Thursday 14th July from 2pm – 4pm and Thursday 28th July from 2pm – 4pm

Suitable for ages 7+

In Early Bronze Age Ireland, people made beautiful gold discs to look like the sun. Drop by the Learning Resource Room to find out more about these precious objects and make your own shining sun disc! No booking required. Located in the Learning Resource Room, First Floor. Not Wheelchair accessible

Public Tour: Treasures of the National Museum

Tuesday 19th July from 11am – 11.45am

Suitable for ages 8+

Join us for a fascinating look at some of Ireland’s greatest archaeological treasures including the Broighter Hoard, the Tara Brooch and the Ardagh Chalice
No booking required. Meet at Reception. Places allocated on a first come basis. Wheelchair accessible.

Drop-In Activity: Making Viking Dublin: Create your own Viking House!

Thursday 21st July from 2pm – 4pm

Suitable for ages 7+

Drop in to the beautiful Ceramics Room to design and create your own Viking home and help build up the Viking town of Dublin. No booking required. Located in the Ceramic Room, First Floor. Not wheelchair accessible.

Public Tour: The Bog Bodies

Saturday 23rd July from 11am – 11.45am

Suitable for ages 8+

Find out more about life in Iron Age Ireland and discover what we can learn about that time from the Bog Bodies in this exciting tour of the Kingship and Sacrifice Exhibition. No booking required. Meet at Reception. Places allocated on a first come basis. Wheelchair accessible.

Drop-In Activity: Create a Cartouche!

Thursday 4th August 2-4pm

Kings of Ancient Egypt, known as Pharaohs, liked to have their names displayed in an oval shape known as a cartouche. Drop by the Learning Resource Room to write like an Egyptian and create your own royal cartouche to take home! Drop-in Activity. Ages 7+. No booking required. Located in the Learning Resource Room, first floor. Not wheelchair accessible.

Public Tour: Treasures of the National Museum

Saturday 13th August 11-11.45am

Join us for a fascinating look at some of Ireland’s greatest archaeological treasures including the Broighter Hoard, the Tara Brooch and the Ardagh Chalice. Tour. Ages 8+. No booking required. Meet at Reception. Places allocated on a first come basis. Wheelchair accessible

Public Tour: The Bog Bodies

Wednesday 17th August 11-11.45am

Find out more about life in Iron Age Ireland and discover what we can learn about that time from the Bog Bodies in this exciting tour of the Kingship and Sacrifice Exhibition. Tour. Ages 8+.  No booking required. Meet at Reception. Places allocated on a first come basis. Wheelchair accessible

Heritage Week: Across Africa – A Victorian Adventure

Saturday 20th August 2-3.30pm

This natural history family fun show is a story of adventure, danger and jungle donkeys! Across Africa is the story of Irishman Dr Thomas Heazle Parke’s journey over one hundred years ago exploring the ‘deepest, darkest Africa’ and all the animals and people he met along the way! Talk. Ages 8+. Places are limited, to book please email educationnh@museum.ie or call 01 648 6316. Please note that this event is at the Ceramics Room in National Museum of Ireland – Archaeology on Kildare Street. Not wheelchair accessible.

Heritage Week: Roger Casement Workshop: Craft Souvenirs 

Tuesday 23rd August 2.30-3.3pm

Discover what famous nationalist Roger Casement collected over a hundred years ago while working in Africa and South America, including souvenirs in the shape of three small statues made for Europeans by South Americans. Then take a look with us at some of the Irish-made artefacts in the museum and be inspired to create your own souvenir 3D model to take home! Workshop. Ages 8+.  Booking required, please phone 01-6486332 or email educationarch@museum.ie. Located in the Learning Resource Room, first floor. Not wheelchair accessible.

Heritage Week: Drop-In Activity Artefact Detective!

Saturday 27th August 2-4pm

Learn how to think like an archaeologist and try to solve the puzzle of some mystery objects during this drop-in session! Drop-in Activity. Ages 8+. Located in the Learning Resource Room, first floor. No booking required. Not wheelchair accessible.

National Museum of Ireland: Natural History, Merrion Street, Dublin 2

Natural History Museum Merrion Square

Drop-in Activity: Summer Activity Sheet Trail – Summer Sun

From Friday 1st – Sunday 31st July

Suitable for Families

Summer is here! Follow the activity sheet trail to find out which animals live in the sea and which live in the sun! Copies of this activity sheet trail are available at the stand in the Irish Room. Don’t forget your pencil!

Drop-in Activity: Who wants to be a Zoologist?

Wednesday 6th July from 10am – 11.30am

Suitable for All Ages

Drop by the Discovery Zone today and match the mystery bones, skulls and teeth with the correct species – just like a real zoologist! No booking required. Wheelchair accessible.

Tour: Jungle in July

Saturday 16th July at 2pm and Saturday 30th July at 2pm

Suitable for age 8+

It’s a jungle out there…and inside The Dead Zoo! Join this tour of our upstairs exhibition, Mammals of the World, and get the ‘bear’ necessities on jungle animals and their habitats. No booking required but places are limited. Not wheelchair accessible.

Inspectorium: What’s New, Dead Zoo?

Tuesday 19th July from 11am – 1pm

Suitable for all ages

Drop into the Discovery Zone today to meet a Museum Educator and some new specimens in the handling collection including a panda, hyena and anaconda skull! No booking required. Wheelchair accessible.

Autumn Activity Sheet Trail – Busy Bees

August 2nd to Friday the 30th September

Autumn is a busy season – nature is getting ready for the approaching winter. Drop into the Museum and follow the busy bees with our Autumn Activity Trail. Drop-in Activity. Families. Copies of this activity sheet trail are available at the stand in the Irish Room. Don’t forget your pencil!

Inspectorium: Under the Sea!

Wednesday 3rd August 11-1pm

Do all whales have teeth? What is a turtle’s shell made of? Drop by the Discovery Zone today to learn about creatures under the sea and smell a stinky pilot whale skull! Drop-in Activity. Families. No booking required. Wheelchair accessible. 

Inspectorium: Birds ‘N’ Beaks 

Thursday 11th August 11am-1pm

How do birds’ beaks help them to eat different kinds of food? Drop into the Discovery Zone for a peak at our birds ‘n’ beaks and see up close the difference between the bills of an eagle, spoonbill and a barn owl! Drop-in Activity. Families. No booking required. Wheelchair accessible.

Inspectorium: Dinosaurs at the Museum!

Tuesday 16th August 11-1pm

Visit the Museum today and meet our life size Megalosaurus – a large meat-eating theropod dinosaur from the Jurassic! Meet the Museum Team and get a chance to hold real dinosaur fossils from the handling collection! Ages 8+. Talk. No booking required. Wheelchair accessible.

Heritage Week 2016: Across Africa – A Victorian Adventure with Catherine McGuinness

Saturday 20th August 2.00-3.30pm

This natural history family fun show is a story of adventure, danger and jungle donkeys! Across Africa is the story of Irishman Dr Thomas Heazle Parke’s journey over one hundred years ago exploring the ‘deepest, darkest Africa’ and all the animals and people he met along the way! Talk/ Ages 8+. Places are limited, to book please email educationnh@museum.ie or call 01 648 6316. Please note that this event is at the National Museum of Ireland – Archaeology on Kildare Street. Not wheelchair accessible.

Heritage Week 2016: Maude Delap and the Jellyfish

Wednesday 24th August 11-1pm

Irishwoman and scientist, Maude Delap, was born 150 years ago. She was known as being the very first person in the world to breed jellyfish in captivity which revealed their fascinating life cycle. To celebrate her pioneering work drop into the Discovery Zone to learn more about these curious creatures and even make your very own jellyfish! Ages 8+. Drop-In Activity. No booking required but there may be a short waiting time. Wheelchair accessible.

Merrion Square Open Day: The Summer Sun Trail

Saturday 27th August 10-4pm

Call in to The Dead Zoo this Merrion Square Open Day and complete our Summer Sun activity sheet trail. Pencils will be available all day! Drop-in Activity. Families. No booking required. Wheelchair accessible.

National Museum of Ireland: Country Life, Mayo

Museum of Country LIfe Mayo

Temporary Exhibition: The Hoard & The Sword: Echoes of the Vikings in Mayo

From Friday 1st – Sunday 31st July during Opening Hours

Suitable for All Ages

This exhibition explores the discovery of a hoard of silver bracelets from Cushalogurt, Kilmeena, and a Viking sword found in the River Moy at Coolcronaun. This is the largest hoard of silver arm rings found in Ireland and the sword is a fine example of late 10th century craftsmanship. These objects give evidence of Mayo’s Viking Heritage. Exhibition continues until June 2017.

On Sight Art Trail 2016

From Friday 1st – Sunday 31st July during Opening Hours

Suitable for All Ages

Explore the Museum grounds and view the varied and engaging art works of On Sight 2016 – an art trail around the grounds of Turlough Park. The installations remain until September 2016. The theme of the trail is ‘1916’. On Sight is a collaboration between the Museum of Country Life, Mayo County Council Arts Office, Mayo Arts Squad and professional artists.

Drop-in Activity: Knitting & Crochet Circle: Summertime Knits

Friday 1st July from 11am – 1pm

Suitable for Adults & Children 7+

Would you like to learn a new skill this summer? Whether you are an enthusiast or a beginner, come along and join the group to share skills & patterns as well as a bit of craic! Beginners welcome. No booking required.

Workshop: Viking Jewellery Design

Tuesday 12th July from 2pm – 3pm

Suitable for families

View the exhibition ‘Hoard and the Sword- Echoes of the Vikings in Mayo’, learn about the Viking silver ringlets from the Cushalogurt Hoard then have a go at making and designing your own bracelet with artist Lisa Fahy from Studio C. Booking required.

Crafternoons

Thursday 4th August 2-4pm, Thursday 18th August 2-3pm

In association with the RDS Craft Winners exhibition come along and join the members of the Education team for an afternoon of traditional crafts and fun. Drop-in Activity. Family. No booking required.

Knitting & Crochet Circle: Summertime Knits

Friday 5th August 11-1pm

Would you like to learn a new skill this summer? Whether you are an enthusiast or a beginner, come along and join the group to share skills & patterns aswell as a bit of craic! Drop-in Activity. Adults & children 7+. Beginners welcome. No booking required.

RDS Craft Winners

Tuesday 9th to Wednesday 31st August During Opening Hours

Each year, the winning and commended entries are showcased at the RDS Craft Awards Exhibition during the Dublin Horse Show. This year the Craft Awards exhibition will also travel to the National Museum of Ireland – Country Life, Turlough Park, Co Mayo until November 2016. Temporary Exhibition. All Ages.

Crafternoons: RDS Winner Demonstration

Thursday 11th August 2-3pm

The annual RDS Craft Awards showcase and reward excellence in Irish craft. There are 12 categories in each strand of the competition, only category winners can be considered for the overall Awards of Excellence. Come along and meet one of those top prize winners and see a demonstration of the techniques used in creating their winning entry. Demonstration. All Ages. No booking required.

“Hairy Jaysus”

Sunday 14th August 2-3pm

One of the most tragic figures killed during the Easter Rising was the pacifist, feminist and socialist Francis Sheehy Skeffington, who suffered a summary execution by a deranged British officer. The awardwinning playwright and actor, Donal O’Kelly – one of Ireland’s most acclaimed theatre practitioners – has crafted a new one man 50 minute play, “Hairy Jaysus”, which examines Francis Sheehy Skeffington’s legacy as viewed through the eyes of a Dublin street beggar today. This event is a rare opportunity for an Irish audience to see O’Kelly’s performance of “Hairy Jaysus”, which opens in New York in April 2016. Performance. Adults & Children 7+. Booking required 

Heritage Week: Open Day

Wednesday 24th August 11.30-4pm

Join Kevin Barton and Christy Lawless for a day of heritage events to celebrate Heritage Week.

  • 11:30am: Heritage Week: Schools Heritage Project. A display of the work of Parke, Mayo Abbey and Ceathrú Thaidhg national schools documenting their local heritage and investigating their past. The project is supported by the Heritage Council.
  • 12pm-1pm: Kite and pole photography Demo. Kevin Barton will demonstrate techniques used in modern non-invasive archaeology. See how kite and pole photography can help in the interpretation of the historical landscape.
  • 2pm-4pm: Geophysical Survey Demo. Does Turlough Park have an Ice- House? Join Kevin Barton and Christy Lawless as they investigate the existence of this feature on the grounds of Turlough Park using geophysical survey techniques. Local community and school groups are welcome to come along and help out and discover if this ice house exists. Demonstration. All Ages. No booking required.

Heritage Week: Donkey Day ‘The Working Donkey’

Thursday 25th August 12-4.40pm

The team from Sathya Sai, Sligo; Horse & Donkey Mayo Sanctuary, Kiltimagh and Irish Donkey Welfare Organisation, are all back! Come along and meet the donkeys: help groom them, see how their hooves are trimmed and watch as they are harnessed and ready for work. Join us for lots of games, demonstrations and information. Open Day. Families. No booking required.

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