Volvo Ocean Race 2009

Maria Moynihan Lee and Katie Shackleton were instrumental in producing and delivering the Galway Volvo Ocean Race 2009 in the roles of Festival Director and Events Manager respectively. This 14 day free festival created to celebrate the stopover of the Volvo Ocean Race in Galway saw a staggering 650,000 visitors to the Race Village and €58 million generated for the local economy. Below is a brief overview of the main elements undertaken to achieve this highly successful event:

Entertainment Programme: Over 100 free events were programmed over the 2 week period, including showcase events like in-port racing, a Red Arrows Air Show and headline acts such as The Stunning, The Hothouse Flowers, Sharon Shannon, Lucia Evans and Aslan performing nightly. Aside from the core programme there were also a number of fringe programmes that ran in conjunction with the event.

Volvo Ocean Race ceremonies: Large scale spectacle to celebrate the arrivals, opening ceremony, prize-giving and departures of the boats.

The Schools Programme: 16,000 school children participated in a 9 month long educational program, following the route of the race. The project culminated in over 10,000 students visiting the Race Village on school tours with a view to enabling access and increasing participation in sailing and water sports.

Volunteers Programme: More than 750 volunteers helped to make the event a success. Recruiting and training this many people is no small feat and our Volunteers were of such a calibre that they deservedly won the Mayor’s award in 2009.

Media and Marketing Campaign: An international and nationwide communications and advertising campaign delivered the 650,000 attendees. It included TV, Radio, Print and Social Media and culminated in 269 national and international journalists attending Galway to cover the event.

Traders– Over 70 high quality traders added to the festival atmosphere.

Evaluation: We collaborated on the establishment of terms of reference for the economic impact report. Full post- event evaluation and reporting was also executed for all sponsors, stakeholders and funding bodies.