Irish speakers from all over the country will be gathering together again in Dublin at the end of the month for another Pop Up Gaeltacht event. This latest event will take place in P. Mac’s, the pub based on Stephen Street Lower in the city, on Thursday evening, 26 January. The aim of the Pop Up Gaeltacht is to give Irish speakers and friends of the language an opportunity to share a few drinks and speak the language.
This is the third event to take place since the Pop Up Gaeltacht began last November, and the organisers, Peadar Ó Caomhánaigh and Osgur Ó Ciardha, are surprised at the event’s success.
“The first two were excellent,” says Ó Caomhánaigh. “We couldn’t believe the numbers. There were about 200 people in Bar Rua in November, and there were about 180 with us in the Grand Social on 29 December, at possibly the worst time of the year to organise an event. On top of that, Pop Up Gaeltachtaí were organised in Manhattan, New York and Georgetown, Washington DC, during December. The Pop Up Gaeltacht concept is ‘open source’ and anyone in the world is welcome to organise one.”
The pair decided to put a plan together after sensing a lot of negative attitudes towards the Irish language on social media. They wanted, says Ó Caomhánaigh, to organise an event that would show that Irish was alive and well in the capital, that it was “to be seen and heard.”
“We decided to just pick a bar and send an invite out on social media. That’s how it began and it’s clear that it has worked well, as a start anyway.”
In terms of long term goals, there’s no limit to the possibilities of the Pop Up Gaeltacht, according to Ó Caomhánaigh. Looking at the success of the nights so far, it’s safe to say that the event will be with us for the foreseeable future.