Rowallane Garden – It that time of year again when we team up with Cadbury to offer you a cracking Easter.

Spring into action and unleash your inner explorer at Rowallane Garden, Saintfield this Easter Tuesday (29 March) from 10.30am-3pm for our Cadburys Easter Chick Hunt.

Hop along for a fun filled day out exploring the nooks and crannies around the garden and hunt for clues to win a Cadbury’s choocy prize. Every single Cadbury Easter Egg Hunt will help us care for our special place for future generations to explore.

There will be loads of other activities to fill your day, get your face painted, egg rolling and visit Phil’s Farm and his animal friends and on your adventure hop by our café and reward yourself with a warming cuppa and a hot cross bun on your adventure, to make your day eggstra-special!

Normal admission charges and Members free apply plus £1 for the Easter Egg Hunt.

Enjoy more events like this by becoming a National Trust Member on the day and help support this special place.

For further details on what’s on and opening times visit and follow us on facebook

Come and Be a Pirate In Bangor This Easter Monday!

Want to be a pirate for the day? This Easter Monday, March 28, pirates will run amok in Bangor!

Pirate Matt Vernon from The Beat Carnival is all set for the annual Easter Parade and Fun Day in Bangor. Taking place on Easter Monday, March 28, the event will include a spectacular pirate-themed parade and a fast-paced trial bike competition at The McKee Clock Arena.

If you would like to join in the fun, then come on down and be a part of it! Look out for ‘X Marks The Spot’ signs around the town and make your dreams of becoming a pirate come true! Expert face-painters will transform your little darlings into dashing pirates. Come dressed for the part and take part in a pirate bonanza day! With a pirate parade, street entertainment, a pirate island, free prizes and lots more, your family will love this free day out.

The spectacular Pirate Parade will be taking place at 3pm when over 200 children and young people from local youth and dance groups will make their way around the Town Centre. Look out for pirate ships, colourful bands, pirates, dancers and live music.  Led by The Mayor of Ards and North Down and featuring Bangor Central IPS, St Columbanus College, St Comgalls PS, North Down Scouts and many more local groups, this is an extravaganza not to be missed!

Project 24 will be turned into “Pirate 24” for the day, a fun Treasure Island full of pirate-themed crafts, activities and music. Come and join in the fun in the pirate dress up area, get your face painted or make some crafts in the pirate craft emporium. Walk the plank with some real-life pirates or have a boogie to some Desert Island Discs.

Bangor Chamber of Commerce is also joining in the fun with their Big Coin Giveaway Bonanza. Over 400 local businesses have kindly donated prizes to be handed out on the day – look out for the lucky coins and you could be a winner!

The pirates of the Moto Trial NI Club are very excited to be given the honours of entertaining all ye land lubbers with the biggest arena event to date. The McKee Clock Arena will take centre stage for this dazzling trial bike competition as the Pirates of The Bay pit their wits and skills against each other over various insane obstacles! Picture the scene, The Black Pearl has run aground on the rocks, and its cargo of rum drums and parrot cages along with the wooden rafters of the hull make for the perfect obstacles for these pesky pirates to go head to head to see who is the greatest! Free posters will be signed by the riders between shows so come along and cheer your favourite pirate along.

On The Promenade, a special pirate land train will be giving free rides all day. And look out for the giant seahorse and pirate ship who will be entertaining the crowds in The Sunken Gardens.

So come on down to Bangor with your family and friends for lots of pirate fun this Easter Monday at this FREE event! The fun runs from 12 to 5pm.

For further information check out:

Dana Masters Thursday 14th April: THE MAC, Belfast

Dana launches her long awaited first EP live at the MAC this spring. Tickets on Sale Now!

Originally from the Deep South in the United States, Dana grew up with sound of soul, rhythm and blues and gospel music all around her. Her love for music developed as she grew up and lead her to study music, majoring in vocal performance at university. Music took Dana from South Carolina to Minneapolis and then onto Los Angeles where she lived for four years and where she met an Irish boy who would later become her husband. In 2008 Dana and her husband moved to Northern Ireland.

Although she sang sporadically, music generally took a back seat while Dana settled into life in a new country and culture. That all changed in early 2012 when Dana had a chance meeting with Linley Hamilton at a local music venue.  During that year Dana, Linley and some of the best Jazz musicians playing in Ireland began a weekly residency in the basement of McHugh’s bar in Belfast, the inspiration for Dana’s first EP.

From live work with BBC Radio 4 and Proms in the Park to singing regularly with Van Morrison, Dana’s reputation as one of Ireland’s top vocalists continues to gain momentum.

Calling Northern Ireland home, Dana is passionate about music as a vehicle to make people and communities vibrant. Dana and her husband Andrew live in Lisburn with their three children.

Dana Masters will launch her debut original soul EP at The MAC, backed by a band of some of Ireland’s most esteemed musicians:

Dana Masters vocals
Linley Hamilton trumpet
David Howell sax
Johnny Taylor piano
Gareth Hughes bass
James Nash guitar
Paul Hamilton drums

Tickets for The MAC are available:

In person from the Box Office

By Telephone: 028 90 235350
Book On Line:

Wanted: Titanic Belfast Seeks Junior Explorer!

Titanic Belfast, the world’s largest Titanic experience, is on the lookout for its latest recruit – a child reviewer for 2016/17!

Katie Marks (aged 8) and Stewart Finlay (aged 9) are pictured with Titanic Belfast’s Chief Executive as they help its search for its newest recruit - an inquisitive, enthusiastic child reviewer with a nose for a story and a passion for Belfast’s history, the sea or Titanic! This Easter, Titanic Belfast is offering one lucky child the opportunity to experience all it has to offer for free – for an entire year – whilst casting their eye over its family trail throughout the galleries, on board SS Nomadic and its new audio guides as well as meeting its mascots. If you think your child has what it takes, visit

Is your child…

– Inquisitive
– Enthusiast
– Over the age of 5 and under the age of 13 (as of May 2017)
– with a nose for a story
– as well as an interest in Belfast’s history, the sea or Titanic’s story!

Then, you may want to find them gainful employment as Titanic Belfast’s Junior Explorer this Easter?

Titanic Belfast, the word-class visitor attraction, is offering one lucky child the opportunity to experience all it has to offer for free – for an entire year – whilst casting their eye over its child friendly offering.

This includes its brand new audio guide, family trail and mascots, which allows children to learn about the world’s most famous ship in a fun and challenging way interacting with characters throughout the exhibitions nine interpretive galleries, as well as hopping on board SS Nomadic, the last remaining White Star Line vessel with an array of WW1, WW2 history on top its Titanic connection. Not forgetting its world-class and exclusive summer exhibition and Magical Christmas Experience!

And the best bit – parents and siblings get to tag along too to the world-class attraction, which has now welcomed over 2.7 million visitors. It was also recently included in Lonely Planet’s Ultimate Travelist of 500 of the world’s most striking locations and was named the ninth best rated museum in the UK Travellers’ Choice™ awards, announced by TripAdvisor.

This Easter, on top of exploring the sights, sounds, smells and stories of Titanic, as well as the City and people which made her, Titanic Belfast and SS Nomadic will also have an egg-cellent Easter Trail, Kids Eat Free in Bistro 401 (with one adult meal – 25th – 29th March) and a special Easter Sunday Afternoon Tea (27th March).

To enter, please download the form from, specifying why your child should be the Junior Explorer and return it by email to or by post to Junior Explorer, Titanic Belfast, 1 Olympic Way, Queen’s Road, Belfast, BT39EP before 9th May 2016.


THIS Easter, Hastings Hotels is offering an exciting range of ways to relax and enjoy time off with friends and family – from luxurious overnight stays and afternoon teas, to tasty dining experiences and rejuvenating spas.

Enjoy a delicious Easter Sunday Lunch with family and friends at a Hastings Hotel on Sunday 27th March. All six hotels and the Percy French at Slieve Donard, and Cultra Inn at Culloden are hosting a range of superb Easter dining options with an opulent array of the finest locally sourced produce.  With a host of stunning locations to choose from and something to suit everyone, including the kids, there’s nowhere better to enjoy a special lunch and get together with the family.

Get away this Easter!

Everyone loves a short break away to celebrate spring!  Hastings Hotels is offering guests some exciting offers for a fun short break in either the Europa or Stormont Hotel in Belfast this Easter.  There is an excellent family break offer available which includes overnight accommodation, full Irish breakfast, a chocolate welcome treat on arrival, late checkout and complimentary WiFi, starting from just £100 per night for a family room with up to two children.

The Slieve Donard Resort and Spa in Newcastle is offering visitors a choice of three fantastic Easter Break packages which include breakfast and dinner each evening, with one night stays from only £85pps, two nights from only £150pps and three nights from only £210 pps.

For further information or reservations contact Hastings Hotels on 028 9047 1066 or visit

Status Quo band, Q The Quo will be Rockin the Europa Hotel on 2nd April!

Ireland’s leading Status Quo band, Q The Quo will be ‘Rockin all over the World’ when they play The Europa Hotel on 2 April. This gig will kick off the band’s European tour.

Daniel Crozier from Q The Quo says;

“Thousands of Status Quo fans were left gutted a couple of weeks ago when the band announced that they’re hanging up their electric guitars this year and not doing any more electric concerts, so hopefully all the Status Quo fans will come out to our gig and enjoy all the energetic Status Quo hits.”

Tickets for Q The Quo concert at The Europa Hotel on 2 April cost £12 and are available from The Europa Reception on 02890 271066 or from and or phone 028 90310101

Tickets include ‘Johnny’s Big Night Out’ disco after the gig with U105’s Johnny Hero.

Want to play at Ireland’s Best Small Festival? Stendhal Submissions open now!

The Multi-award winning Stendhal Festival of Art is back this summer on August 12/13 and now is your chance to get on the bill and play at Ireland’s Best Small Festival.

The submission process for musical acts opens on Monday, March 21 and will be ongoing until Sunday April 3, so if you or your band wish to be considered for a place on the line-up at the annual arts extravaganza at Ballymully Cottage farm the team at Stendhal want to hear from you.

To apply simply visit and click on the news link, fill in the form and email the team at and you will be in the running to take part in an event which boasts an alumni the likes of Donovan, The Undertones, The Divine Comedy, Frightened Rabbit, SOAK and a who’s who of the very best talent from the UK and Ireland.

Festival Director Ross Parkhill says that the submission process is one of his favourite parts of running the festival.

“We really look forward to the submission process every year,” he said. “There is so much talent out there and every year we hear loads of stuff that excites us and we always come across a couple of real gems that go on to put on a great show at the festival.

“We are interested in all genres of music, we pride ourselves on our wide and eclectic mix of musical styles each year and this year will be no different. So if you are a metal band or if you play the harpsicord and harmonica at the same time, please be sure to get your application in.”

“So drop us a line via the website between March 21 and April 3 and you could have the opportunity to help us be Ireland’s Best Small Festival again in 2016.”

Easter Bunny Springs Into Action at National Trust

  • The Easter Bunny stops off at Castle Ward to celebrate the National Trust’s nationwide Cadbury Easter Egg Hunts
  • He is set to deliver 362,592 chocolate bunnies to 271 National Trust places across Northern Ireland, England and Wales

The Easter Bunny has kicked off his 2016 schedule in style, with the National Trust unveiling a series of show-stopping topiary bunnies, one of which can be found in the grounds of Castle Ward in County Down.

The 4ft topiary bunnies have been created to celebrate the ninth year of the Cadbury Easter Egg Hunts. The hunts will be taking place at 12 National Trust places across Northern Ireland over the Easter holidays and families are invited to unleash their inner explorer at these adventurous hunts.

The 820 acre walled demesne at Castle Ward, on the shores of Strangford Lough is just one of the locations providing a beautiful backdrop for an Easter day out.

Visitors to National Trust places across the Easter holidays will be able to take part in special Cadbury Easter Egg Hunts, with every child receiving a Cadbury chocolate treat for getting involved.

Jacqueline Baird, Castle Ward Visitor Services Manager said:

“We’re really excited that the Easter Bunny dropped off at Castle Ward on his journey to prepare for the Easter celebrations, and are thrilled to play home to one of his exclusive 4ft topiary replicas in our gardens.  We are open every day of the Easter holidays and are encouraging people to try our fun activities throughout the week, not just the Easter weekend.

There is plenty to enjoy on various days including the adventure and woodland playgrounds, animals in the farmyard, ’50 things to do before you’re 11¾’ adventures with maps and scrapbooks, local food and craft stalls… and not forgetting the famous Cadbury Easter Bunny Hunts. After a very wet winter please bring your wellies for a ‘Welly Big Adventure’ of Easter fun and activities.

“We hope visitors and families participating in our Cadbury Easter Egg Hunts enjoy trying to spot our topiary Easter Bunny. Such visits over the Easter period are so important to us, as they help the National Trust, Northern Ireland’s largest conservation charity continue its conservation work.”

To find other Cadbury Easter Egg Hunts across Northern Ireland head to:

St. Columb’s Cathedral to host young American chamber choir for free concert on Easter Monday

The Ashley Hall Red Choir and Chamber Choir from South Carolina will stop off in Derry for a very special Easter Monday performance in the beautiful surrounds of St. Columb’s Cathedral.

Ashley Hall is a preparatory girls’ school in Charleston, South Carolina and the Red Choir is an auditioned ensemble for students who are dedicated to the art of choral music. The choir performs throughout the school year, with major performances at Christmas and graduation. In addition to performing in the Charleston community, members of the Red Choir have performed throughout the United States and Europe, most recently completing a successful tour of Italy.

The choir is conducted by Dr. Robin Garner who is in her tenth year as Director of Choral Activities at Ashley Hall. Dr. Garner studied music and conducting in both Ireland and the USA and is a founding member of the Southern Appalachian Chamber Singers, a professional choir based in Asheville, North Carolina.

The youngest member of the group described how “this is the first trip to Ireland and Northern Ireland for many of our singers and we are very excited to have the opportunity to perform in such beautiful venues and to take in so many counties in one tour. We have a beautiful programme of music to share with our audiences and look forward to making friends along the way who share a love of music and singing!”

The choir will complete an Easter tour of Ireland that includes a series of free concerts in St. Patrick’s Cathedral (Dublin), Kylemore Abbey (Galway), Glenstal Abbey (Limerick) and St. Columb’s Cathedral (Derry).

All concerts are free of charge and all are welcome.

St. Patrick’s Cathedral (Dublin), Saturday 26th March, 1pm

St. Columb’s Cathedral (Derry), Monday 28th March, 7.30pm

Kylemore Abbey (Galway), Wednesday 30th March, 12pm

Glenstal Abbey (Limerick), Thursday 31st March.

For more information contact Conor Ellard, Tour Operator, 00353 87 290 3407.


Come and enjoy a night of great music and food at our popular Jazz Supper Club on Friday 8th April.

Taking centre stage will be the hugely popular Linley Hamilton Quartet. A familiar voice on the airwaves trumpeter Linley Hamilton regularly shares his love of jazz with music lovers through his BBC Radio Ulster show ‘After Midnight’. Linley and his talented quartet are a regular feature on the festival circuit, drawing the crowds with their refreshing take on classic jazz, and sheer love and respect for the music.

Tickets for this event are priced £11 for the performance only and £21 for the performance and supper. Supper will include a menu of Spiced BBQ Pork with Sir-Fired Vegetables, Creamy Cajun Chicken Pasta, Cajun Spiced Meatballs, all Served With Cajun Wedges, Salads & Breads.

Saturday 9 April will see yet another musical performance with ‘Singing Nina’. Known for her powerful and emotive performances, vocalist Victoria Geelan, and her trio of outstanding Northern Irish musicians bring their celebration of a woman who defied convention and categorisation – Nina Simone.

Jazz favourites mix with stomping gospel, piano ballads and civil rights anthems to create an intoxicating insight into an artist whose musical mastery continues to inspire generations. Together, they tell the story of the life of the late and very great Nina Simone, through songs such as ‘My Baby Just Cares For Me’, ‘Feeling Good’, ‘To Love Somebody’ and ‘Ain’t Got No – I Got Life’. Like the woman who inspired it, it’s a night sure to live on in the memory of all present for many years to come. Tickets for Singing Nina are priced £10 each, and can be booked through the Box Office on [028] 3752 1821, or online at

And to keep up-to-date with the latest news at the Market Place Theatre, you can follow us on Facebook ( and Twitter ( where you will find all the latest information, special offers and video previews.