With the year-long “Homecoming” event known as The Gathering underway, communities are turning to record-breaking spectacle to attract crowds and have a bit of fun.
Here are a few record-breaking events to add to your “to do” list:
Town of 1,000 Beards: There’s still time to grow some facial hair before the town of Ballymoe in County Galway hosts the largest number of bearded men in one place in June. Sounds like the boy to girl ratio on this one will give the ladies their pick of hirsute guys.
Patricks or Patricias: The towns of Ballybofey and Stranorlar in County Donegal are spending St Patrick’s Day counting all the Patricks, Patricias, and other approved variations of the name in their effort to make the record book. But they’ll have to contend with the people of Mullingar in County Westmeath who intend to go for the record on the same day.
Calling All Clares: County Clare is calling on anyone named Clare, Claire, and Clair to make the record books this June. They’ll try to outnumber the 1,096 Mohammeds in Dubai who took the record from 375 Marias in Spain.
The Power Clan vs the Gallagher Clan: This September, the Power clan in Waterford is looking to unseat the Gallaghers of Donegal for the title of largest gathering of members from a single family name at a single event… the winner will need 1,489 family members to prevail.
Traditional Music: County Clare is already known for traditional music, so you can expect quite an experience when the north Clare village of Kilfenora goes for the world’s largest indoor trad music event.
Three-Legged Race: Expect some tumbles and laughs in Cootehill, Co. Cavan, this May when more than 930 people are needed to outdo the record that was set in the UK in 2010.
Sheaf Tossing: I won’t try to tell you I know anything about sheaf tossing, but there’s a World Record to be had at the Tinahely Agricultural Show in Co. Wicklow in August.
Dracufest: Irishman Bram Stoker would be proud. Ballyshannon in Co. Donegal is going for the most-vampires record in October.
Dog High Jump: Expect canine feats of greatness at the Mullingar Country Faire in Co. Westmeath as pets take to the air for the record dog high jump competition in May.
The Big Big Quiz: The world’s largest trivia event will include 1,000 venues and over 100,000 quizzlers will be going for the World Record and raise money for charity this month.
Tin Whistle Ensemble: There’s a new siege on Ennis this year. The band Lúnasa and the people of Ennis, Co Clare, will be bringing out their tin whistles as they go for the tin whistle ensemble record.
Street Performance World Championship: Last Year, Dublin took the record for the most Where’s Waldo’s in one place… it really did look like a scene from the beloved books. Who knows what record they will go for this year.
Other record attempts include: Christmas Calling where Mullingar, Co Westmeath, teams up with Brockton, MA; Clarecastle Gathering, and their unnamed event in Co Galway in July; and the Most Duffy’s in one Place in Co Monaghan, in June.
St Patrick is not “iconic” enough for the record books: Limerick was looking to create the record for the most St Patricks in one spot, but the folks at the Guinness World Records told them the saint wasn’t “iconic” enough for them to accurately make the count.
The answer is YES! In 1951,the managing director of the brewery commissioned the first edition of The Guinness Book of Records. Read more >>