July has been full of festivals, and last weekend it was time for Knockanstockan. Here Ents Editor Michaela Deane tells us all about her short and sweet weekend at Blessington Lakes.
Knockanstockan – although a small festival, it was highly anticipated on my behalf. For a festival that isn’t really that well known, I’d heard great things about Knockanstockan, and really had my hopes up for it.
Everyone who’d been before was full of praise for it, and I just had to check it out for myself. After eight hours of travelling and accidentally ending up in Kildare, we’d finally reached our destination.
The music at Knockanstockan was something that I’d really been looking forward to, I couldn’t wait to discover some artists and hopefully find some potential new favourites. 
Although the music during the day was slightly disappointing, the Caravan Club stage was hopping by the time it hit midnight, for all of the ravers to dance the night away. 
Apart from that, I really liked Gascan Ruckus’ set, and the Bagels were by far the highlight of the weekend. Stripping off on stage, jumping into the crowd, throwing actual bagels at us; their set was full of surprises as well as some amazing tunes, and I can definitely see them getting signed in the near future.
The amount of energy and enthusiasm that they put into their set was amazing, and their love for performing really shone through.
I found Saturday night to be a little less enjoyable than Friday, but I’m putting that down to my genre preference. There seemed to be a lot of heavy, “screamo” type music, which isn’t exactly my cup of tea. 
But at least this shows that Knockanstockan is a festival that caters for the needs of every type of music lover out there.
The one major upside of Knockanstockan was that you could bring your own alcohol – no paying for it in overpriced bars and off licences. And if you did want to buy some in a bar, their cocktails were absolutely delicious, and not too expensive either. I honestly don’t think any Mojito will top the ones I indulged in last weekend.
One thing I loved about Knockanstockan was the variety of shops and stalls around the site. I haven’t seen the likes of it at any of the festivals I’ve been to before. From hat stalls to dinky little clothes shops, hair braiding and face painting, there was something for everyone. 
It was nice to be able to look around these during the day, to get a break from the constant stream of alcohol back at the campsite. 
Unlike Sea Sessions where the festival site was a fifteen minute walk from the campsite, there was barely three minutes between them at Knockanstockan. 
This made life so much easier for a lazy lump like me, who didn’t have to keep going back and forth after forgetting just about everything in her tent. It made for a relaxed weekend, and there was no complaining about blisters on our toes this time around.
The major fault that I had with this festival is that it only lasted two days. The camping life is the life for me, strangely enough I really enjoy it and two nights just wasn’t enough. 
For someone who’d travelled pretty far to get there, Friday was pretty much gone, so all we had was Saturday. Knockanstockan would be up a lot higher on my list if there was just an extra 24 hours, but given the almighty storm that came our way on Sunday morning, maybe I should be grateful that it ended there and then.
For somebody who wants to go to a festival for a short break and to have some craic, I’d recommend Knockanstockan. But for someone like me who wants to spend the whole time dancing, and could happily stay like that for a week, it wasn’t really enough. 
If they brought back their three day festival, you could see me there again. But until then, I think I’ll give Body & Soul a try next year instead.
Photo: Incase/ Flickr