Cork's Mother Jones Festival postponed until November

Cork's Mother Jones Festival postponed until November
Shandon Shawlies, Mary Crowley, Mary Twomey and Emily Keating at the Official Festival Opening of the 2018 Spirit of Mother Jones Festival, at the Maldron Hotel Shandon, John Redmond Street, Shandon, Cork.Picture: Jim Coughlan.

THE organisers behind one of Cork city’s most loved festivals has postponed its events until November due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The Cork Mother Jones Committee has announced that the ninth Spirit of Mother Jones Festival has been moved from its original date, July 29 to August 1, to the final weekend in November.

The postponement, however, will lead to a neat historical symmetry as the festival will now take place almost 90 years exactly since Shandon-born, influential US labour rights organiser Mother Jones' death.

Spokesperson for the festival and summer school James Nolan said: 

“We are postponing the festival in the interests of the safety of those attending and due to the uncertainty as to the conditions under which it could take place.

“We feel the November date allows for more certainty and gives us time to ensure the safety of those attending. It also gives us the option of perhaps using online technology to ensure the festival can go ahead.

“The fact that in the past week the President of Ireland, Michael D Higgins invoked the famous quote of Mother Jones, ‘Pray for the dead and fight like hell for the living' to honour of our front line and emergency workers was an acknowledgement of her role in protecting workers and ensuring decent working conditions for millions of people.

“Today thousands around the world still draw inspiration from her work.

"Indeed as an indicator or her resilience, it should be remembered that she herself survived three fever pandemics; the Great Famine here in Cork, the Yellow Fever outbreak in Memphis in 1867 which took her family and the Flu pandemic of 1918/19. She continued to practice as a nurse in Memphis until the fever outbreak was over."

"We also intend to ensure she will be celebrated around the period of her birth in July/August.” 

The festival Facebook pages and its website at will continue be updated with info.

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