Past Events

#embRACE Week 2021

#embRACE Week 2019 image

Council, through its Good Relations Programme, invites you all to celebrate the diversity and culture of the Borough.

We have a packed programme and all events are aimed at making everyone in Mid and East Antrim feel welcome, safe, respected and celebrated.

#embRACE Week 2021 will take place from 12 February 2021 - 18 February 2021.

#embRACE Week Programme 2021 

Event Date Description

Japanese Themed Event in conjunction with Parks & Open Spaces

#embRACE Japanese cultures using the media of arts and crafts.

Friday 12 February

This is a closed event with local primary school - however, families are invited to get involved.

11am via Zoom

Parks and Open Spaces team are also preparing a Japanese themed treasure hunt and will install it at Ahoghill New Park and leave it up for a few weeks. Families are encouraged to come out in their own time to complete the treasure hunt.

In Japan, there is a practice called ‘shinrin-yoku’ which literally translates to ‘forest bath’. This is to bathe in the forest atmosphere and connect with nature through our senses of sight, hearing, taste, smell and touch. We encourage you to visit your local green space this week and try this ancient practice. In early documents, Ahoghill is referred to as Magherahoghill meaning ‘the plain of the yew forest’ so it is fitting that a previously closed site has now been transformed into Ahoghill Park featuring walkways, wetlands and newly planted woodland.

Ahoghill was delighted to receive 100 cherry trees as part of the Sakura Cherry Tree Project, a collaboration between the Japan Association in the UK and the Japan-British Society in Japan, and these trees now take pride of place on site.

As part of embRACE week, pupils from local primary schools will take part in Japanese Craft sessions online with local artist Janet Crymble, with all materials provided. Pupils and their families will also get the chance to visit Ahoghill Park at a time of their choosing and enjoy a Japanese themed scavenger hunt - a great way to learn more about Japanese heritage and nature and get some exercise in the fresh air.

Koinobori, carp windsocks, streamers or banners, decorate the landscape of Japan from April through early May. In Japanese culture, the carp symbolizes courage and strength because of its ability to swim up a waterfall. Why not make your own as part of this week’s embRACE celebrations?

Carp Fish Streamer or Banner


Event Date Description

Sushi making video

#embRACE traditional Japanese cooking.

Friday 12 February

Masako Carey demonstrates how to prepare the traditional Japanese dish - Sushi.  Masako is keen to dispel the myth that sushi is raw fish. 

This traditional dish is prepared with vinegared rice, usually with some sugar and salt, accompanying a variety of ingredients, such as seafood, often raw and vegetables.

Event Date Description

Art Centre of Bluegrass, Kentucky

#embRACE Stones of hope short video.

Saturday 13 February

Brendan Long from the Art Centre of Bluegrass, Kentucky demonstrates a fun activity that can be enjoyed by young and old alike.

This is much more than painting stones, it is about using art to spread joy to those near and far.

Carrick Connect has been spreading joy in the Carrickfergus area.  We do hope that these messages of hope pop up throughout the Borough and beyond. So get painting and hiding these lovely treasures. This will bring joy to those who paint and hide their works of art and these will cheer up the finder, in these difficult times.


Event Date Description

MEA Rocks

#embRACE Our beautiful Borough.

Monday 15 February

Whilst out taking daily exercise, #embRACE our beautiful Borough. 

Look for stones and hide the stones that you have painted.


Event Date Description

#embRACE Playful Museums

Monday 15 February
Mid Antrim Museum delivers a Playful Museums programme to under 5s each year in February through stories and movement.
This short story will help children to explore ways to be kind to others and have fun.


Event Date Description

Mae Murray Foundation

In conjunction with This is Me Dementia Choir

#embRACE All Ages and All Abilities

Monday 15 February

This carefully designed and structured session will bring together members from inclusion specialists, Mae Murray Foundation and The Dementia Friendly This Is Me Choir for the first time, with a focus on fun musical interaction, facilitated in an inclusive, safe and welcoming environment.

Participants will discover the benefits of music through listening and singing along to well-known popular songs from many different eras, with the opportunity of taking part in fun, music-related games, trivia, rhymes, recall, movement and other artistically driven activities. 


Event Date Description

Inter-ethnic forum – (3 performances)

#embRACE International Dance.

Tuesday 16 February

Dance Video from dance company ImageNation NI.

Polish dancer is Aneta Murawska.

Ugandan Singer is Donna Namukasa.

The term Bollywood was created by combining two names: Bombay (The city now known as Mumbai) and Hollywood.

Bollywood dance is a dance style which combines the rich texture of India’s many classical and folk dances, fused with elements of Jazz, Hip-Hop, Arabic and Latin dance forms.

Dance 1: Krawkowiak, a Polish Traditional dance which comes from the region of Krakow.  The dance dates back to the 16th century but is still popular for performances thanks to its fast tempo and colourful costumes.

Dance 2: Kujawiak, a dance from the region of Kujawy. The name itself appeared for the first time in 1827. Because of its beauty, the kujawiak dance was embraced by the landed gentry and the nobility.

In order to learn the dance, the landowners invited the village musicians and dancers to their manors. They encouraged the peasants to show them fancier steps and figures and they themselves also improvised new ways of dancing the traditional steps. As a result of this, the kujawiak was incorporated at elegant parties and fancy balls.

Ugandan traditional folk song known as Amazzi genyanja which is a work/Fishing song that was sung on Lake Victoria.

This video was recorded at Liverpool docks, and the background music was performed and recorded by Nalongo Folk music and dance musicians based in Belfast.


Event Date Description

#embRACE Small Worlds Café.

Tuesday 16 February

6.30pm - 8pm

Booking essential

Zoom facilitated by Belfast Friendship Club

This workshop will give a flavour of the diversity that exists in Northern Ireland. 

It will allow participants to meaningfully begin to engage with people from different backgrounds, and from other parts of the world.

For many participants, these are experiences that open up a fresh perspective.  This event has been carefully adapted, to allow participation from the safety of our own homes. 

Conversations will take place using virtual break out rooms on Zoom.  This will provide a safe and semi-structured setting.  This will be carefully managed by a trained/experienced facilitator.

To reserve a place, please email: or by Monday 15 February.


Event Date Description

His Trip tae Glesco (extract from Robin’s Readings) by W. G. Lyttle 

#embRACE Ulster-Scots through storytelling.

Tuesday 16 February

Helen Stewart reads an extract from Lyttle’s humorous account of a boat trip from Belfast to Glasgow in the 1880s, published in Robin’s Readings, his popular newspaper column.

An excellent social history relating to the sea crossing back and forth which many made in the past, it is also laced with useful advice, such as when Paddy McQuillan advises the ship’s captain to steer well clear of Ailsa Craig “fur A’m tell’t it’s a very dangerous. 



Event Date Description

#embRACE Irish Language through music and song.

Wednesday 17 February

Performers - Aodan mac Séafraidh & Jacqueline Jefferies

Description of performance -  Is é Dubh atá Ciabhfholt Cinn mo Ghrá, a version of a Scottish song from the Appalachian Mountains translated into Irish?

It's a well-known song in English "Black is the Colour" but there are several other versions of it including one from Co. Clare.

Performers - Nigel and Elaine, teachers with Glór Dhal Riada group.

Description of performance - Micks March – The Star of the County Down, The Rae auld mountain Dew, Whiskey in the jar, Waille Waille and The Leaving of Liverpool.


Event Date Description

Adult Storytelling with Karen Edwards (Heart to Hearth)

#embRACE Stories from around the world.

Wednesday 17 February

Storytelling is universal and is as ancient as humankind. Before there was writing, there was storytelling. It occurs in every culture and from every age. It exists (and existed) to entertain, to inform, and to promulgate cultural traditions and values.

Oral storytelling is telling a story through voice and gestures.

The oral tradition can take many forms, including epic poems, chants, rhymes, songs, and more. Not all of these stories are historically accurate or even true. 

Truth is less important than providing cultural cohesion. It can encompass myths, legends, fables, religion, prayers, proverbs, and instructions.

A traditional storyteller will share stories from around the world that promote love, friendship and cultural acceptance.


Event Date Description

Ulster-Scots history and Language

#embRACE Ulster-Scots.

Thursday 18 February

50-minute podcast.

Dr David Hume traces the origins of Ullans (Ulster-Scots) as a language and how it developed from its birthplace in the Lowlands of Scotland, where it is called Lallans, through to Ulster and indeed also to America.

The trials and tribulations of the language were recounted in his lifetime by James Orr (1770-1816), so there has been attrition for generations and centuries, resulting in decline and almost extinction.

Ullans has survived however and most people, whatever their cultural background, use or at least hear words or phrases in their everyday lives. This podcast examines how this historical language remains very much alive today and the speaker will also highlight what it means to him.


Event Date Description

The Gathering Drum

#EmbRACE Rhythm

Thursday 18 February 2.30pm

Facebook Live session

A drum circle is a group of people, usually playing hand drums and percussion in a circle formation. The music they create is not rehearsed, but rather playing “In the moment”

Themes to include diversity, respect, celebrating difference and some light explanation of African drums and Cultures. 

 Live from The Gathering Drum Facebook page!

A session to celebrate our differences and think about our wide world.