Today, GUINNESS announced details of their 250th anniversary celebrations, which will peak on “Arthur’s Day” on September 24, 2009. Celebrating 250 years, this remarkable day will honor Arthur Guinness, the man who signed the 9,000 year lease on the St. James’s Gate brewery in 1759 and whose legacy gave us GUINNESS beer. Arthur’s Day will see a series of events take place around the world to celebrate this remarkable milestone in the life of a remarkable brand.
The celebrations will take place in Dublin, the spiritual home of GUINNESS, and around the world in cities including New York, Lagos, Yaoundé, and Kuala Lumpur. Live music and entertainment will come from some of the world’s biggest names in music including the Black Eyed Peas and renowned DJ and producer David Holmes with rising stars such as Estelle, Kasabian, The Wombats, and The Enemy, and legendary acts such as Soul II Soul and The Undertones, along with D’Banj, Reverend & the Makers, Estelle, Kasabian, Mongrel, Noah & the Whale, Mystery Jets, and Johnny Flynn with further artists to be announced.
The highlight of this once-in-a-lifetime celebration will see artists and consumers throughout Dublin and around the world raise a GUINNESS to Arthur at 17:59 local time, to start a truly remarkable global toast. Celebrities including Sir Bob Geldof, Guy Ritchie, Carson Daly, Jerry Hall, and Sophie Dahl will also be raising a GUINNESS to Arthur and joining in the celebrations. The toast will not only recognize the philanthropic achievements of Arthur Guinness and his family, but is a gesture to mark the next philanthropic step from the Guinness Company.
Arthur Guinness and his family were responsible for some of the most well-known acts of philanthropy in Ireland, and to honor and continue this legacy, GUINNESS will establish the Arthur Guinness Fund. The aim of the fund is to enable and empower individuals with skills and opportunities to deliver a measured benefit to their communities. The Guinness Company will donate £5 million to the Arthur Guinness Fund, which will be active from September 2009.
The Arthur’s Day celebration will commence in Dublin, with internationally-renowned music acts and local talent performing in locations around the city, from pubs, bars, and music venues to the St. James’s Gate brewery itself. Thousands of people will be coming together to experience the events live, with more tuning in to watch across the world. One of the most historic buildings in the brewery, Hop Store 13, will be converted into a live music studio for Arthur’s Day for over 2,000 special guests from around the world who will enjoy performances from global artists.
Simultaneously, events will occur across Africa and then onto New York at 17:59 local time, wrapping up 24 hours after they began with celebrations in Kuala Lumpur. A remarkable end to a remarkable celebration of 250 years!
GUINNESS STOREHOUSE, the “Home of Guinness,” Dublin and Ireland’s number 1 visitor attraction, will be joining in the Guinness 250 celebrations with a summer festival of music, lectures, tours, and demonstrations. With over 90 events planned, the GUINNESS STOREHOUSE 250 SUMMER FESTIVAL will kick off on June 1, 2009 and run until August 30, 2009. Festival events will take place daily at no extra charge to GUINNESS STOREHOUSE visitors.
Celebrations will be ongoing for the months of June, July and August. On weekends, a Céilí Mór (traditional Irish social dance) with a live Céilí band and troupe of professional Irish dancers will bring the house down in a maelstrom of merry-making and revelry each Saturday. Visitors will have the opportunity to take to the floor and learn traditional Irish set dances such as the “Walls of Limerick” and “Siege of Ennis.”
All Ireland and World Dancing Champions and Musicians will perform a lively and entertaining show of Modern Irish dance, similar to shows such as Riverdance and Lord of the Dance. Many of the dancers have performed with these shows in the past.
On Sundays in the Source Bar, the living tradition of Irish music will be realized with a traditional Irish music session or “seisún” of jigs, reels, and Irish ballads.
For those who ever sought the secrets of making a great GUINNESS & Beef Irish Stew or other GUINNESS infused culinary delights, GUINNESS STOREHOUSE Head Chef, Justin O’Connor will give live food demonstrations on “Cooking with GUINNESS.” Participants will have the opportunity to taste Justin’s creations and receive a complimentary GUINNESS Cookbook.
The GUINNESS archivist will present the “Top 10 Golden Moments of GUINNESS History” including a rare chance to view founding documents of the GUINNESS Company, to learn about key events in the company’s history, and why St. James’s Gate grew to become the largest brewery in the world.
2009 marks the 80th anniversary of GUINNESS advertising and a guided “GUINNESS Advertising Tour” will bring visitors through some of the most memorable and innovative advertising campaigns used through the years by the GUINNESS Company.
GUINNESS devotees will relish the chance to partake in the “GUINNESS Variants Tasting Sessions,” where they will not only learn how to appreciate and taste the different GUINNESS variants but also master the art of how to pour the perfect pint of GUINNESS.
A specially-commissioned “GUINNESS 250 guided tour of GUINNESS STOREHOUSE” will delve deeper into the history of how the GUINNESS story has unfolded over the centuries from humble beginnings to become a global brand synonymous with Ireland.
In addition, on three separate afternoons, on June 19, July 17, and August 28, a select audience of lucky visitors will have a rare opportunity to “Enjoy a Guinness with a Guinness.” Rory Guinness is an eighth-generation Guinness, descended directly from Arthur. A Dubliner and brewer by birth, Rory is passionate about the great legacy his family has bestowed on Dublin. Rory will be happy to regale a few tales from his family’s history and to answer questions visitors may have.
All festival events will be provided at no extra charge to GUINNESS STOREHOUSE visitors. Booking is not required; places will be limited and offered on a first-come, first-served basis. For further information and to purchase admission tickets with a 10 percent discount, log on to www.guinness-storehouse.com.
JUNE 1, 2009 – AUGUST 30, 2009:
Mondays, 11:00 am – GUINNESS & FOOD DEMO with Head Chef Justin O’Connor
Tuesdays, 11:00am – TOP 10 GOLDEN MOMENTS OF GUINNESS HISTORY with GUINNESS Company Archivist
Wednesdays, 11:00 am – GUINNESS Variant Tasting & Perfect Pint Tuition
Thursdays, 11:00 am – 80 Years of GUINNESS Advertising – Special Guided Tour
Fridays, 11:00 am – GUINNESS 250 – Special Guided Tour
Saturdays, 1:00 pm – Céilí Mór (Traditional Irish Social Dance)
Sundays, 1:00 pm – Traditional Irish Music Session