Wainfest 2023 – Get set for a journey of discovery, creativity and wonder!

Wainfest, Donegal’s annual Children’s Arts & Book festival returns this year from the 7th – 15th October with a host of awesome activities to satisfy the diverse interests and backgrounds of young minds across the county. It promises to take children on a journey of discovery, creativity and wonder that will stay with them for years to come. The theme of this year’s festival ‘Our Planet, Our Home’ fuses the love of books, art and culture with a commitment to environmental responsibility and hopes to encourage children in Donegal to explore new ways to contribute to climate action.

With over 100 free events for families and schools, there’s something for everyone to enjoy this October. This year’s festival includes an array of engaging experiences; from interactive storytelling sessions to fascinating workshops, and everything in between – it truly is a vibrant celebration of literature, learning, creativity and culture.

Festivities kick off this Saturday the 7th with a range of family events taking place across the county. Why not ‘roll up, roll up’ to Central Library, Letterkenny and fine tune your juggling skills with In Your Space Circus Skills Workshop. For lovers of the outdoors, there’s a Beach Clean with Liquid Therapy at Rossnowlagh Beach and a morning of Forest Exploration at Ards Forest Park. For younger kids seeking a more chilled out start to the day. 

Why not check out the Lego Workshop at Bundoran Community Library or pay a visit to Buncrana Community Library to hear from Isla McGuckin, author of April’s Garden. The schools programme, as always is an action-packed line-up of renowned artists, authors and performers.

 Limited availability remains for the hugely popular storyteller, Niall De Búrca at An Grianan Hotel on 12th October There’s also still time to book for online author events with Oein DeBhairduin and Alan Dunne so visit to secure your school’s place now.

Families can freewheel through the fun all week long with events taking place each day across the county, from Crafting Workshops with Colleen Kearney in Buncrana and Carndonagh Community Libraries, to a Planetarium Show at the Inishowen Maritime Museum. Why not rock out and make shapes at a Silent Disco in Bundoran Community Library or Leabharlann Phobail na Rosann? Whatever you fancy, there’s plenty of opportunity for children of all ages to express their creativity, learn new skills and most importantly, have fun! 

Spraoi agus Sport in Carndonagh will host a number of events throughout the festival for children of all ages. Children will get the chance to create their own cuddly toy at a Build a Bear Workshop, and perhaps even take them along to the Teddy Bears Picnic the following day.

The ever-popular Harry Potter Experience returns to Oakfield Park this year on the 7th, 8th, 14th and 15th October with all sorts of magical fun and games for the witches, wizards and muggles of Donegal.

The award-winning Donegal Railway Heritage Centre will host a Family Fun Day on Thursday 12th October. Families can try out Irelands first Interactive Steam Train Cab, enjoy puzzles, model railways, games and much more. 

Wainfest prides itself on being an all-inclusive festival and there are a number of ASD friendly events in this year’s programme including Maia Sensory Play on the14th October in Bundoran Community Library. The festival closes on 15th October and one of the final events this year is a Ukrainian language screening of Mavka: The Forest Song / українська версія at Eclipse Cinemas in Lifford-Strabane and Bundoran.

With so many fun, family events happening across Donegal, and bookings filling up fast, don’t delay and book your place today. 

For more information about the festival including booking information and event times click

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