New Ross to have a JFK tea party reenactment 60 years after his Irish visit

By Katy Thornton

June 30, 2023 at 10:24am


JFK visited Ireland just five months before he died.

2023 marks the 60th anniversary of the historical visit of President John F Kennedy to New Ross and to his ancestor’s homestead at Dunganstown, where the memorable Tea Party took place.

To pay homage to this iconic event, the tea party is set to be re-enacted at the JFK Arboretum in Wexford during the annual Kennedy Summer School on the afternoon of Thursday, August 31st 2023.

The afternoon will consist of talks, entertainment, and naturally, tea. News reporter Eileen Whelan will host the tea party, and she will be in conversation with Sean Connick, CEO of the Kennedy Summer School.

WestEnd singer and actress Sarah Clancy will entertain guests with a wide variety of popular numbers, accompanied by musician Tomas Kavanagh.


Guests to the event will be treated to an array of pastries and cakes and of course, a traditional fruit cake, which is what President John F. Kennedy along with his sisters Eunice Shriver and Jean Kennedy-Smith were served by his cousin Mary Ryan during his visit in 1963. These treats will be made by the expert members of the Wexford Federation Irish Country Women's Association.

Following on from the re-enactment, the entire weekend will have a series of panel discussions, debates and public interviews and addresses, including a panel on ‘Celebrity Politics’ and a discussion on the 50 year  anniversary of Ireland joining the EU.

For more information on the JFK tea party reenactment you can visit the Kennedy Summer School website.

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