Words: Ellen Kenny
Garth Brooks is finally coming to Croke Park, and both concertgoers and the people of Dublin have been some dealt warnings.
Did you ever think we’d see the day? For the first time in 25 years, country singer Garth Brooks is arriving to Dublin for five stadium concerts. Organisers Aiken Promotions have said it could be the biggest music event Croke Park has ever seen, and they are putting out warnings in advance of the five-day event.
The promoters have warned concertgoers that early queueing for the concerts will not be permitted in the streets around the stadium. The gardaí have also instructed concertgoers to be respectful of residents. “In particular urinating on the streets” is an absolute no-go. Are Garth Brooks fans okay?
The gardaí have also warned residents of what to expect on the concerts on September 9, 10, 11, 16 and 17. Superintendent Martin Mooney said that there would be a “soft cordon” in place around the venue from 10:00 on the morning of each concert, where residents and businesses in the area will be accommodated. From 15:00, a hard cordon will be in place. Only residents will be allowed three passes each ahead of the concerts to gain access to the areas around Croke Park.
However, after 10:15 until an hour after the concert, no access will be allowed within the cordon to allow for people to leave the concert.
Aiken Promotions described the upcoming concerts as an “extravaganza” not to be missed. One member also said that the concerts are “probably the biggest cultural event in Ireland in the history of music”. They must not have seen Jedward at Eurovision.
Of course, Garth Brooks’ previous attempts to perform in Dublin was a big cultural moment in Ireland. The singer previously planned five stadium concerts in Croke Park in 2014. But when Dublin City Council said he could only do three, Brooks cancelled the whole thing. He famously described the catastrophe like “losing a member of the family”. And with the way Ireland carried on during the whole fiasco, it was a loss for us too.
Now, 400,000 people will attend Croke Park over the five concerts. That’s roughly eight per cent of the population of Ireland. People from every county in Ireland will be there, as well as 30 countries. To mark this occasion Aiken Promotions announced they are flying a brand new stage and equipment to Ireland specifically for this show.
And of course, Garth Brooks will be taking in all Dublin has to offer during his shows… by staying in Kerry between his gigs. This is most likely for privacy reasons, but I can’t imagine Garth was impressed all that much by our hotels.
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