Off the felt – fun, games and music at the Irish Open 2023

Long after players have forgotten their ignominious departure from the Main Event, or the time they were TOTALLY ROBBED with a one-outer, they will STILL remember the “craic” they had at the Irish Open.

Roberto Romanello and Debs The Destroyer! Pic credit: Mickey May

The Irish Open has a reputation for being an event where the pain of busting is soothed by the knowledge that you’re about to have a seriously great time in the bar. The Irish Open never stints on “the craic” and this year will be no exception with a packed line-up of music, games, shuffleboard, beer pong and general shenanigans.

This year’s Irish Open festival runs from April 3 to April 10 at the Royal Dublin Society and entertainment has been planned throughout the week to ensure plenty of off-the-felt fun.

Players’ Lounge

The Irish Open Players’ Lounge will be located in Hall 3 (the Serpentine Hall), right next to the Main Hall at the RDS. This is the place where busted players can forget about their tournament woes and get stuck into competitions of a more energetic kind. The Lounge will be open throughout the event with games running every night from around 9pm to 11pm, Wednesday, April 5 onwards.

Here’s a rough schedule (subject to change at the organisers’ discretion)!

Wednesday: Pokerstars Fun Casino 
Thursday: PaddyPower Beer Pong Competition
Friday: PokerStars Corn Hole Compettion
Saturday: PaddyPower Race Night
Sunday: Pokerstars Shuffleboard Competition
Monday: (TBC)

Don’t miss the chance to boost your ego at Beer Pong, Shuffleboard, foosball, FIFA and Corn Hole – and whatever other games our ents wizard Phil Baker has managed to whizz up. There will of course be prizes galore on offer to winners. There will also be two incredibly helpful promo girls in the Players’ Lounge ready to help with any questions you may have about the event.

Live music at the “Chancers Arms” bar

Live music is a huge part of the Irish Open and there will be a performance every night of next week’s festival, starting with well-known Dublin entertainer Austin Carter who will get the craic going on Monday with a mix of modern oldies and Irish music.

Others scheduled on the festival bill include Dublin guitarist and song-writer Colin Scallan, Guto Piazza, Ben Hammond and Shane Martin. Top Irish comedian and impressionist Al Foran will be doing the “Shuffle up and deal” honours on Friday, April 7 while the acclaimed Irish band Abbeyfolk will be performing in the main hall just before the Main Event starts at noon that day and from 2pm-2.30pm in the first break. Acoustic duo the Two Bowsies are also set to perform with sets in the main hall on Thursday, April 6 and Saturday, April 8.

All the evening gigs will start around 11.30pm and take place in the RDS’s Centrum bar – which is being renamed “The Chancers Arms” just for the Irish Open. Finding the bar couldn’t be easier – it’s located right outside the Main Hall as you go into Hall 3.


Off to the dogs
On Saturday, April 8, there’s a trip to the races at Shelbourne Park Dog Track for anyone who fancies it, following by a trad music session in the celebrated Madigans bar afterwards. We’re organising entry and the bus to/from the race track. Reservations will be on a first come, first served basis – please see our lovely promo girls in the Players Lounge to get your name down. We can take about 50 people. Bus leaves RDS at 7pm.

Fairyhouse race meet
There’s also a VIP trip to Fairyhouse races on Easter Sunday (April 9). Space will be very limited for this trip so PLEASE GET YOUR NAME DOWN EARLY if you want to come. Also, don’t miss the chance to get some inside knowledge with our racing tipster who will be giving expert advice in the Players’ Lounge from 11.30am to noon before the bus leaves promptly outside the RDS.

Players Party at Krystle Night Club

Don’t miss the fabulous Irish Open Players Party at Krystle Nightclub at 2, Harcourt Road, Dublin 2, on the night of Sunday, April 9. A bus will be available to get you from the RDS to the club but you’ll need to make your own way home!