Are you looking for something fun to do with the kids this Summer? Check out where to enjoy outdoor theatre and cinema with the family in Ireland this Summer. Pack the picnic rugs, snacks and drinks and enjoy a unique experience together.
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It’s a lovely experience heading out in summer time for some outdoor entertainment. Seeing a play, concert or outdoor movie with the kids can be a real treat.
And if you pack a picnic and blanket, and maybe even a pillow or two if the kids want to lie down, you can make the most of the outing.
We always look out for what’s on around the summer to see if there are plays or movies or concerts that we can take our kids to. Even when they were smaller, we used to head out to an event, and they could run around nearby while we enjoyed the entertainment.
If your teen is studying particular texts for school, then seeing the play version can help bring it to life for them.
Outdoor Theatre Events For Families For Summer 2019
A Midsummer Night’s Dream at St Endas Park, Dublin
Dates from Thursday 20th to Saturday 29th June, 7.30pm – dlr Mill Theatre in association with Balally Players present A Midsummer Night’s Dream in the walled garden at St Endas Park in Rathfarnham. Gates open at 7pm and the show starts at 7.30pm. Pack a picnic and a rug to enjoy this outdoor theatre event.
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
A Midsummer Night’s Dream is Shakespeare’s best-loved romantic comedy. Let yourself be whisked away on a thrilling journey to the most magical of forests and meet star-crossed lovers, playful fairies and hilarious travelling players. Chapterhouse Theatre Company presents beautifully designed Elizabethan costumes, a wonderful musical score, and enchanting woodland creatures come together to make this an evening of unmissable summer garden theatre.
Dates and Locations for A Midsummer Night’s Dream
- Ballykeeffe Amphitheatre, Kilkenny, Friday June 21st, 7pm
- Curraghmore House, Waterford, Sunday June 23rd, 4pm
- Belvedere House and Gardens, Wednesday June 26th, 7pm
- National Botanic Gardens, Dublin, Sunday June 30th from 6.15pm
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Find yourself whisked into the world of small-town life in Victorian England, as Elizabeth Gaskell’s Cranford is adapted for performances outdoors. In the sleepy village of Cranford, a mysterious new arrival is setting hearts aflutter…
But can lost loves and old friendships withstand the drama of snobbery, gossip, and social scandal? Bring along a picnic and join Chapterhouse to find out!
Dates and Locations for Cranford
- Ardgillan Castle, Dublin, Friday July 19th, 6.30pm
- Fota House Arboretum and Gardens, Cork, Friday 12th July 6.30pm
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Meet Ben, an 11-year-old want-to-be plumber fed up with spending his Friday nights at granny’s. All she wants to do is play scrabble and eat cabbage – not exactly his idea of fun!
Hungry and bored Ben goes searching for something more edible in the kitchen and stumbles upon an old biscuit tin. The tin holds more than just digestives, however, it contains Granny’s biggest secret…
Ben’s Granny is an international jewel thief – and she needs his help to pull off her biggest heist yet, stealing the crown jewels!
Heartbreak productions invites you to share in this exciting escapade, a David Walliams best seller adapted for the outdoor stage. Join Ben, and his Gangsta Granny on their grandest adventure full of forbidden fun. It could be very hungry work so come prepared with picnics and appropriate outdoor gear.
Age 7+, Running Time: 2 Hours inc Interval
Dates and Locations for Gangsta Granny:
- Westport House, Mayo, Thursday July 18th 2019 @ 7pm
Pride and Prejudice
Take a step back in time to meet Elizabeth Bennet, Jane Austen’s notorious heroine. When Elizabeth meets the terse and abrupt Mr. Darcy, she loathes him at first sight. But is there more to him than meets the eye?
Enjoy an evening of theatre beneath the stars and The Round Tower, basking in the glow of this timeless classic.
Dates and Locations for Pride and Prejudice
- Cabra Castle, Cavan, Wednesday June 19th from 6pm
- The Round Tower Clondalkin Thursday June 20th, doors open 6pm, show at 7pm.
- Castletown House, Kildare, Saturday June 22nd from 5pm
- Kilmacurragh Botanic Gardens, Wicklow, Thursday June 27th from 2pm
- Battle of the Boyne Estate, Meath, Saturday June 29th from 5.30pm
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The Secret Garden
A wonderful Outdoor Theatre event for all the family performed by the Chapterhouse Theatre Company. Join young Mary Lennox on a journey of discovery as she is sent to her uncle’s house in the countryside, where mysteries and secrets lurk around every corner. As she makes new friends and encounters magical creatures, Mary has one burning question: where is the location of her uncle’s secret garden, and where has he hidden the key?
Dates and Locations for The Secret Garden:
- Bellingham Castle, Louth, Tuesday July 23rd from 6pm
- Belvedere House & Gardens, Westmeath, Friday July 26th from 6pm
- Dublin Castle Gardens, Dublin, Tuesday July 30th from 5pm
- Fota House Arboretum & Gardens, Cork, Tuesday August 1st from 5.30pm
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Join Chapterhouse Theatre Company for this brand-new adaptation of everyone’s favourite swashbuckling pirate adventure: Robert Louis Stevenson’s Treasure Island. When he stumbles across a coveted treasure map, young Jim Hawkins finds himself on an epic adventure in the hope of finding Treasure Island. But not everyone is to be trusted, and a dark secret is lurking on board the ship… Don’t miss this much-loved story, adapted for stage in one of the most beautiful open-air venues Ireland has to offer. Secrets, pirates, gold: will young Jim Hawkins discover Treasure Island?
Dates and Locations for Treasure Island
- The Gardens at Rathmullan House, Donegal, Wednesday 24th July from 2pm
- Battle of the Boyne Estate, Meath, Saturday 27th July from 5.30pm
- Powerscourt Estate, Wicklow, Sunday 28th July from 1.30pm
- Kilmokea Gardens, Wexford, Wednesday 31st July from 5.00pm
- Tullynally Castle, Westmeath, Friday August 2nd from 6.00pm
The wild and tempestuous love story of Emily Brontë’s Wuthering Heights, set on the beautiful and mysterious Yorkshire moors, is a tale of passion and revenge that has thrilled readers and audiences alike for generations. Can Catherine and Heathcliff’s love endure, or will the forces of nature tear them apart?
Dates and Locations for Wuthering Heights
- Lisnavagh House, Carlow, Wednesday July 10th, 6.30pm
- Wells House and Gardens, Wexford, Saturday July 13th from 6pm
- Curraghmore House, Waterford, Sunday July 14th, 4pm
- Markree Castle, Sligo, Tuesday July 16th, 5.30pm
- The Gardens at Rathmullan House, Donegal, Wednesday July 17th, 2pm
- Hilton Park, Monaghan, Saturday July 20th from 5.30pm
- Westport House, Mayo, Saturday July 20th, 9pm (Heartbreak Productions)
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Outdoor Cinema Events For Families For Summer 2019
The Greatest Showman at Avondale House, Wicklow
Happenings and Coillte have teamed up to present The Greatest Showman at Avondale House, Wicklow on Friday June 21st 2019, gates are open from 8pm with the film kicking off approx 9pm.
This enchanting film tells the story of circus master P.T Barnum. Barnum struggled from a humbled background as a tailor’s son to become the ringmaster behind the “Greatest Show on Earth”. This musical brings down the house with a beautiful score, explores the magic of the circus and is perfect for a night of open air cinema under the stars.
This will be a Leave-No-Trace event. This means that you, the audience will be active participants in preserving this beautiful woodlands and keeping it clean. Bins will be provided. There will be teas, coffees, sweet and savoury treats on for sale. Tickets are free but pre-booking is required.
Outdoor Cinema at Carlow Arts Festival HQ
The ever-popular outdoor movie night at Carlow Arts Festival is back, and due to popular demand – bigger, with two movie nights at this year’s festival. Cosy up on the lawn with blankets, grab some tasty food and drink from the Festival Food Village and O’Hara’s Craft Beer Bar and enjoy the big-screen movie under the stars on either Friday or Sunday evening!
As always – the final selection for Friday night was selected by popular public choice from a selection of brilliant classics from 1979 (the year the festival was born!). This year you chose family classic The Muppet Movie. As a special Anniversary treat they are also putting on cult-classic Back to the Future on Sunday Night.
- The Muppet Movie, Friday June 7th 2019 @10pm
- Back to the Future, Sunday June 9th @ 10pm
Free Mystery Movies Outdoors in Moran Park, Dún Laoghaire
Mystery Movies will be a day of mystery themed films shown on an outdoor cinema screen at Moran Park, Dún Laoghaire. Entry to each movie is free but space is limited so be sure to get there early for the film you want to watch. Bring along your own seating or use one of the loungers provided and sit back to enjoy the show.
- The Goonies (12), Sunday June 30th 2019 @ 12pm
- The Big Sleep (PG), Sunday June 30th 2019 @ 4.30pm
- Sherlock Holmes (12A), Sunday June 30th 2019 @ 7pm
Shrek Family Outdoor Cinema at Seamus Ennis Cultural Centre, Dublin
Every fairy tale needs a hero, a princess and a noble steed. Enter Shrek, Princess Fiona and Donkey in this classic family friendly animation SHREK! Showing at Seamus Ennis Arts Centre, Naul, County Dublin on Saturday 13th July 2019. Doors open 1:30pm and film commences 2pm.
Once upon a time, in a far away swamp, there lived an ogre named Shrek (Mike Myers) whose precious solitude is suddenly shattered by an invasion of annoying fairy tale characters. They were all banished from their kingdom by the evil Lord Farquaad (John Lithgow). Determined to save their home, not to mention his, Shrek cuts a deal with Farquaad and sets out to rescue Princess Fiona (Cameron Diaz) to be Farquaad’s bride. Rescuing the Princess may be small compared to her deep, dark secret.
Admission: €4, book tickets online www.tseac.ie
Outdoor Movies on the Beach, Bray, Wicklow
You can watch the stars under the stars with Outdoor Movies on the Beach Bray Promenade, Strand Road in Bray. ‘Outdoor Movies on the Beach’ screenings are age appropriate. The onus is on the parent to decide if the movie is suitable for their child to watch. If attending the ‘Outdoor Movies on the beach’ screenings children must be accompanied by an adult.
Movies and dates:
- Top Gun – Thursday, 12th July, 10pm
- Dirty Dancing – Thursday, 9th August, 10pm
- The Greatest Showman – Thursday, 16th August, 9:30 pm
Retro Drive-In Movies
Rock up, Roll in and watch your favourite movies from the comfort of your car. Grab a Burger, Coffee, Doughnut, Popcorn or Chips & Dips and listen to the movie in your car on your FM Radio. Retro Drive-In Movies will be at Leopardstown Racecourse in Dublin and Foynes Harbour, Limerick this summer.
Movies at Leopardstown Racecourse, Dublin
- Star Wars – Episode VIII The Last Jedi, Friday 28th June 2019 @ 8pm
- Stand By Me, Saturday 29th June 2019 @ 6pm
- Independence Day, Saturday 29th June 2019 @ 8.45pm
- The Hangover, Sunday 30th June @ 6pm
- American Pie, Sunday 30th June @ 9pm
Movies at Foynes Harbour, Limerick
- Grease, Saturday 6th July 2019 @ 6pm
- A Star Is Born, Saturday 6th July 2019 @ 9pm
- The Greatest Showman, Sunday 7th July 2019 @ 6pm
- Top Gun, Sunday 7th July 2019 @ 8pm
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Over to you now. Are you planning to attend any of these outdoor theatre or cinema events with the kids this Summer? Or maybe you know of another outdoor family event taking place? Please let us know in the comments box below.