Home News Thousands of People run 1600 km, through 250 Towns across 15 Counties

Thousands of People run 1600 km, through 250 Towns across 15 Counties


Welcome to Rith 2010! Details were announced today (25 January) of Rith 2010 – a 1600 km relay-run which will begin in Belfast on 9th March and finish in Galway city as part of the St. Patrick’s Day parade. Thousands will run “ar son na Gaeilge” with the specially designed baton which will hold a secret message from the President of Ireland, which will not be revealed until the end of the run. Rith 2010 is partly funded by Foras na Gaeilge.

Rith 2010 is the first event of its kind in Ireland and it’s modeled on the Basque Country’s Korrika which has been established since 1980. Last year over 600, 000 people took part in Korrika which is accompanied by music, cultural activities and thousands of spectators along the way. The objective of Rith 2010 is also to raise money which will be invested into Irish language projects throughout the country.

“We’re very excited about this event,” says Siobhán Seoighe, Events Manager, Rith 2010. “We’ve seen how the Basque Country celebrate their language and culture in such a healthy way. So we’ve decided to bring the equivalent Rith 2010 to Ireland for the first time. This is a real celebration where thousands of people will run to celebrate the Irish language whilst raising funds that will be re-invested back into Irish language projects throughout the country,” she said.

Community groups, school groups, clubs and individuals are all invited to buy a kilometer and take part at any stage of the 1,600 km course. There are many ways to take part – all the information you need is on www.rith.ie

As well as the run itself, there will be plenty of other events happening along the route as part of Seachtain na Gaeilge which will be happening at the same time.


Rith 2010 is a new national festival that will take place between 9th and 17th March 2010 as one of the main events of Seachtain na Gaeilge (Irish language week). A 1600km course has been laid out for a massive relay-race run, running from morning to night, from Belfast to Galway over 9 days with thousands of people taking part in over 250 towns and villages.

A special hand-carved baton has been designed that will carry a hidden message throughout Rith 2010. At the end of the run, the message of support for the Irish language, written by Mary McAleese, the President of Ireland, will be read out as part of the St. Patrick’s Day parade in Galway.

Anyone can run on any part of the course. You don’t need to pre-register but if you want to be involved you can buy your own kilometre on www.rith.ie and for that part of the run, you and your group will lead the run and carry the baton!

Rith 2010 is a brand new way to celebrate the Irish language an culture in a way that is visual, fun, community based and can be celebrated throughout the island of Ireland.

Rith 2010 also aims to raise money to create a new fund for the promotion of the Irish language in the community.