A NEW festival is scheduled to take place in Emo this summer.
The event, which will have a maximum capacity of 2,000 people, was launched recently at the Gate House in Emo.
Festival promoter Philip Meagher said: “Laois is the home of the Picnic and at Forest Fest we want to hark back to and recapture that sense of excitement, enthusiasm and boutique festival experience that was synonymous with the early days of the Picnic.
“Our underlying and guiding principle is to produce an intimate, comfortable, close quarters, quality boutique festival experience. We want people to have a fun weekend when they visit Emo in July and go away with a smile on their face and only good memories.
“It’s going to be like dancing at the crossroads, but 2020 style, with the best entertainment, best food, refreshments and revelry as is befitting a summertime festival in such a lovely setting as here in the heart of Laois in Emo village.”
The first acts lined up to take part in Forest Fest, which takes place from Friday to Sunday 10-12 July, include The Stunning , Something Happens, Mike Denver and The Frank and Walters.
Also on the bill for the weekend are The Pearly Whites, Pogueology, The Jury, The Big Spoon, Vocalese and Johnny Cash tribute act Walk the Line, as well as Strength in Numbers and The Glimmermen.
Forest Fest is the brainchild of Philip Meagher, who said that his vision is for it to develop into a popular national destination festival for tourists and locals alike.
He successfully organised the Rednecks & Rhinestones festival in Emo a number of years ago. The well-known solicitor and proprietor of the Gate House Bar and Batoni’s Restaurant in Emo has his sights set on putting Forest Fest on the map and building on that reputation for fun, quality entertainment in a quaint setting and boutique style.
He said: “Our primary focus is on providing a uniquely intimate and enjoyable experience in a relaxed and comfortable atmosphere. Limiting our numbers will ensure our ability to guarantee easy access, provide comfortable facilities and a quality food and beverage experience centred around a close-up engaging experience with the exciting acts that we have lined up.
Tickets for the event are on sale by logging onto at www.forestfest.ie.
Numbers are limited, with a range of day, weekend and festival club pass options available all at very accessible price points.
Other events taking place over the weekend will include arts, afternoon sessions, a festival club and a family fun day.
There will also be supervised festival camping in conjunction with Emo GAA. Festival parking is free of charge.