Every year there is a series of events organized by IWAI members and local communities to promote the use of the canals in the Kildare area. The year usually starts when the canal is opened after the Waterways Ireland (WI) winter maintenance programme, with an event on or close to St Patrick’s Day and then an Easter Rally.
Kildare IWAI support other members along the canals, lakes and rivers and in recent years have had boating contingents attending events in Dublin, Ballycommon, Tullamore, Shannon Harbour, Vicarstown, up and down the Barrow and the Shannon. In 2012, Kildare IWAI inaugurated its first boating get-together in Kilcock, North Kildare on the Royal Canal and enjoyed a wonderful Midsummer event along this great waterway.
As well as the spring events, Kildare has become known among the boating community for its end of season happening, when many boats travel back from their spring, summer and autumn cruising around the country to meet up again in Naas at the end of October, for the annual Canal Festival. It may be a bit chilly outside but the warm welcome from the people of Naas, strange looking people in Halloween costumes and the boats lit up in the harbour and along the canal, makes this weekend a great social occasion.