Golowan, the celebration of midsummer, is a Cornish tradition that has been revived in recent years in Penzance.
Golowan has grown over the years from a one day event to a full community festival. The Golowan Festival now includes the revived traditions of the Feast of St. John with the Golowan Band, Serpent Dances, election of the ‘Mock Mayor’, the Quay Fair, and the colourful Mazey Day parades.
This year’s event has a ‘Golowan Goes Green’ theme, expanding on last year’s efforts to make an environmentally friendly and sustainable festival.
The first quirky highlight of the festival will be on Thursday evening, when the Mock Mayor is elected. This old folk tradition was created to parody the official mayor. The custom continues today as a bit of fun.
The main highlight of the festival for most is Mazey Day, which this year takes place on Saturday 29th June. Launched each year by the Mayor of Penzance and the newly elected ‘Mock Mayor of the Quay’, the event sees artists, schools and other community groups fill the streets with music and giant sculptures in a series of parades. A Golowan Market with stalls selling Cornish products ranging from locally produced foods to handcrafted gifts, also takes place.
This year’s Mazey Day parades will begin at 10am with the Civic Procession, followed by the Crowst Parade at 11am, the Dinner Parade at 1pm, the Crib Parade at 3pm, and finishing with Men and Maids dancing the Serpent Dance through the streets of Penzance with the Golowan Band at 4.45pm.
But Mazey Day isn’t just about parades, and the day will be filled with live music, performances and dancing throughout the town.
Sunday is Quay Fair Day with entertainment and music taking place at the harbourside and on the Prom. There will be live music all day with various venues offering an array of music including a Folk Stage at the Quay and the Golowan Community stage promising an eclectic line-up of performances.
When: On until 30th June 2019
Where: Penzance, Cornwall
£: Many events are free
More info: www.golowanfestival.org