This weekend, Antrim Castle Gardens will be transformed into a festival of flowers, food and fun as Allianz Garden Show Ireland takes over the venue, bringing gardening inspiration and family fun to the thousands of visitors who attend the event each year.

A local heritage theme has been created throughout the show and visitors can enjoy being transported to Narnia through the CS Lewis-inspired themed gardens as well as the beautiful large feature garden, designed by architect James Purdy. The event will also encourage children to use their creativity to build fairy houses; try their hand at making their own flower or feather headbands; and even design and fly their own kites.

There will be plenty of opportunities for young and old to learn more about gardening by visiting one of the many garden visuals or exploring the ‘Heritage of Place’ garden situated at the heart of the show. The show will have talks from experts, such as BBC’s Joe Swift, who will discuss how to create your garden on a budget, to grow veg and even produce floral arrangements for your own garden party. Those attending will be able to meet the expert exhibitors, who will be happy to answer any questions.

Music and food at Allianz Garden Show Ireland

The festival atmosphere will continue throughout the weekend with members of Sestina ‘popping up’ around the show in song, and the Brass Band from the City of Belfast School of Music will play on Saturday 6 May. On Sunday 7 May the ‘Sing for Life‘ choir, a partnership between Cancer Focus and the Crescent Arts Centre, will perform with their 70-strong choir.

Food continues to be a huge part of the show, with celebrated cookery writer Thane Prince joining resident chef Paula McIntyre on Saturday. In the Food Pavilion, Paula will be creating picnic and BBQ dishes during her daily demonstrations. Visitors will also be able to buy local produce from artisan producers or enjoy cream teas and jazz in the Punjana Tea Pavilion. The Click Energy Relax and Recharge area, one of the many quiet spots throughout Antrim Castle Gardens, will offer visitors a range of local farm produce to enjoy.

The family-focused event has, over the last number of years, engaged with schools province-wide to ensure that the show is eagerly anticipated by the children who take part in the Allianz-supported schools challenges. Primary schools will be displaying their garden containers under the theme of ‘Enchanted Gardens’. Meanwhile, Allianz Scarecrow Avenue will come alive with scarecrows created by primary schools in the integrated sector, who will be making a ‘Legends of NI’ avenue.

Damien O’Neill, head of marketing and communications for Allianz Ireland commented: “Allianz Garden Show Ireland is a very special event as it really does have something for every generation, from show gardens to live choirs, everyone will find something that they enjoy. We are especially excited to see so many activities for young children that will encourage them to start their gardening journey, activities like planting workshops and creating fairy gardens will spark those little imaginations and that is something that we all love to see.”

To buy tickets and find out further information, visit Allianz Garden Show Ireland.

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