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Get Out There Festival gets bigger

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Pro-skater Oisín Belling, who rides for ‘Wreckless’ tries out Westport’s new skate park in advance of the Westport Get Out There Adventure Festival.  ?
Pro-skater Oisín Belling, who rides for ‘Wreckless’ tries out Westport’s new skate park in advance of the Westport Get Out
There Adventure Festival.


Get Out There Festival to provide tourism boost



Áine Ryan

GET Out There is fast becoming the tourism theme for outdoor haven, Westport and its spectacular environs. And now a packed programme, which includes a 10k run along the Greenway, has been announced for the second annual Get Out There Adventure Festival, to be held from September 23 to 25 next.
Organisers say it affords Westport, and County Mayo, an opportunity to tap into Ireland’s €1 billion activity tourism market, which attracts an older wealthier age-group and yields higher financial dividends. 
“Research by Fáilte Ireland shows that activity tourism in Ireland was worth €1 billion in 2009, €404m of this came from the domestic market. Activity tourism is a high-yield segment with a 33 per cent higher spend than the average overseas visitor. Sixty one per cent of activity tourists have a stay of between one and two weeks and 40 per cent of these visit the west, so thee is a good opportunity for further growth,” said Brian Quinn of Fáilte Ireland. 
“Westport’s location on the coast, its unique facilities such as the Great Western Greenway, Croagh Patrick and the quality of existing adventure tourism providers are a real boon to the growth of adventure tourism in the are and Westport’s reputations as a destination for outdoor and adventure sports,” he continued.

Get Out There

ZORBING, orienteering, skateboarding, stand-up paddle boarding, and combat games are just a small selection of the activities on offer at this year’s Get Out There Adventure Festival. 
On Friday, September 23, Mayo Splash and Dash, a primary schools initiative, incorporating swimming and running, will take place at Westport Leisure Park. A Get Out’n’Board Skateboarding Competition  – for 8 to 16 year olds – will also be held from 11am to 1pm at  Westport Skate Park on Saturday 24. Meanwhile, families and festival goers of all ages may participate in the Come Try and Adventure at Westport House on Saturday , also from 11am to 4pm. 
The family-friendly festival will culminate with a feast of sporting activities on Sunday 25 at the Mall from 1 to 5pm. Supported by Westport United and coordinated by Mayo Sports Partnership,  the Festival of Sport Fun Day will include various water sports, street orienteering, traditional games and much more.
Praising the ethos of the festival, Junior Minister Michael Ring said: “More and more people are embracing outdoor and adventure sports. The experience and authenticity of these sporting activities resonates with people, irrespective of age and background. The great thing about the Westport Get Out There festival is that it affords everyone – families, individuals, novices and the more experienced – a safe and free opportunity to partake in many different and adventure sports and the festival programme is also community based, embracing school children, parents and experienced athletes alike.”

Greenway 10k
ADD into the mix the inaugural Great Western Greenway 10k run and this outdoor extravaganza is sure to increase heart rates over the autumn weekend.
With a prize-fund of €2,000, the inaugural Great Western Greenway 10k run is bound to attract participants of all ages and fitness.
“The Great Western Greenway 10k run will form the centre of events for the Get Out There Festival. We want to build up this initiative so that it becomes a well-known and acknowledged outdoor event, not just in Mayo but around the country as well. It’s very important, therefore, that it gets the support it deserves in its first year,” said Charlie Lambert of Mayo Sports Partnership.
He confirmed that the festival committee, in conjunction with Mayo Sports Partnership, will present a €200 prize for the fastest female and male competitors, as well as prizes for runners up and the Veterans’ category. In addition to the cash prize fund, the organising committee will present several spot prizes sponsored by local businesses, including restaurant and leisure centre membership gift vouchers. 
The Get Out There Adventure Festival is supported by Westport Town Council, Mayo Sports Partnership, Westport Leisure Park, Fáilte Ireland, Westport house, Westport Athletic Club and Westport Cycling Club.