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Join the Traditional Celebration of Manx May Day ‘Laa Boaldyn’ at the National Folk Museum 27 April 2007

Herald the arrival of summer by celebrating Manx May Day ‘Laa Boaldyn’, at the National Folk Museum at Cregneash on Bank Holiday Monday 7th May. To celebrate the occasion visitors will have the opportunity to practice traditional crafts and to learn more about the customs connected to Manx May Day.  Loaghtan meg lambs at Cregneash

Throughout the day there will be plenty for visitors to do and see including demonstrations of traditional Manx cooking as the May Day feast is prepared. There will be lots of activities for children to take part in, including the opportunity to hold a Loaghtan lamb and then make their own miniature Loaghtan sheep to take home. Other crafts for visitors of all ages include making Queen of May or Queen of Winter peg dolls.

‘Bock Yuan Fannee’ dance group will be on hand to teach some spring time dances and the Isle of Man Poetry Society will be providing ‘Shennaghees’ (story tellers) to tell May Day stories and read local poetry. There will also be a variety of traditional crafts associated with springtime on the farm demonstrated throughout the day. Musicians & visitors celebrating Manx May Day in 2006

Katie King, Assistant Curator for Manx National Heritage, said:

“The Manx May Day celebrations represent a time between the death of Winter and the rebirth of Summer. In Manx folklore midnight on May Day Eve was a time when witches and fairies were considered to be at their most threatening and a series of traditions, some still practiced in Manx homes today, were followed to protect the Manx people and their livestock from danger. The most important form of protection is the Crosh Cuirn (a Rowan or Mountain Ash cross) which is placed above the door of the house, the cow shed or even tied to a cow’s tails to ward of mischievous fairies”.

This year, a complimentary park and ride shuttle bus, will operate at 30 minutes intervals throughout the day from the Scoill Phurt le Moirrey’s car park, which can be accessed from Station Road in Port St Mary. Parking at the National Folk Museum is limited and visitors to the event are encouraged to use the Park & Ride service to help prevent traffic congestion.

Manx May Day ‘Laa Boaldyn’ starts at 10am and will run until 5pm and visitors of all ages are welcome. Cregneash Folk Village is part of the award-winning Story of Mann and is open from 10am to 5pm daily, until October.

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