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Belfast City

Everything You Need To Know About Q-Con 2019

Q-Con, an annual three day gaming and anime convention held at Queen’s University in Belfast returns on August 30, 2019.

Who are Q-Con?
The Q-Con event, ending on September 1, has taken place at the University for over 25 years and is hosted by the Queen’s University Belfast Dragon Slayers society every year since 1994.

Who goes?
As the gaming community has grown exponentially over the past two decades so has Q-Con, which is now morphed into a beast in its own right, so it’s fortunate we’ve got some Dragon Slayers on hand. With gamers and anime fans travelling from all over the world to be there, it’s estimated to attract over 6,500 attendees over the whole weekend.

What about the kids?
Sunday, the third day of the event is especially friendly for younger children and families. It will include face painting, speed drawing and even a puppy café to support the charity Cavaliers in Need. There will also be viewings of the groundbreaking anime Ponyo as well as the webtastic film Spiderman: Into The Spiderverse, and finally Disney’s Treasure Planet. The screenings will be held at the Queens Film Theatre at different times throughout the day.

What else is happening?
Fans of the K-Pop scene and fitness fanatics will also be catered for in a fun combination of K-Pop and exercise. The group K-PopX will be putting on a 50-minute workout set, which will feature music and dance routines of the most well known K-Pop artists. The Irish Video Game Orchestra (IVGO) will also be hosting their Unplugged event, playing some of gaming’s most iconic themes that will surely be something to remember. IVGO will be playing on Friday night at Elmwood Hall, starting at 7pm.

Ever fancied proving to your kids that you’re better than they are at Fortnite? Now’s your chance as families will be able to take part in a Fortnite Battle Royale which will earn the winners bragging rights for weeks to come. This will just be one of the gaming events held that weekend. The Battle Royale will be held at Queens Computer Science building on Friday and Saturday.

Don’t forget that attendees are invited to cosplay as their favourite characters. There will be prizes for those who have the best outfits at the Cosplay Masquerade, with judging starting at on Sunday at 12pm at Elmwood Hall.

Doom fans
For older fans who have enjoyed games since 1994 the will be an opportunity to confront DOOM’s creator John Romero in multiplayer matches. As the DOOM series has enjoyed a resurgence in recent years, being able to defeat the man himself at his own game will be a dream come true for many gamers. Come and show John what you’re made of at The Peter Froggatt Centre, Ground Floor, Room 024 on Saturday at 11am until 3pm.

When visiting Q-Con make sure to stop by at Artists Alley where traders from all over the world will be showing off and selling their unique and customer artwork. Many of these artists will only be here for this one weekend, so this is a fantastic opportunity to find some original and unique artwork to decorate your home or bedroom.

The stats
Over 6,500 attendees

50+ traders

50+ artists

50+ console bays

100+ eSports PCs

100+ Tabletop Games

50+ special events

Tickets are £18 (+booking fee) for a weekend pass if purchased in advance from >>

On the day: Friday, Saturday, & Sunday Day Passes £13 cash at the door.

Special Sunday Family Ticket is £20 for 2x Adults & 2x Children

For a comprehensive breakdown of the events and times at Q-Con, or to purchase tickets, please visit their website here 

Belfast City

NIEA Sign Ambitious Prosperity Agreement with Belfast Harbour

Pictured at the RSPB’s ‘Window on Wildlife’, Belfast, are (from left-right) David Dobbin, Chairman, Belfast Harbour, Joe O’Neill, Chief Executive, Belfast Harbour and Environment Minister Edwin Poots MLA. Photo Credit: William Cherry PressEye

Environment Minister Edwin Poots MLA has signed a wide-ranging and ambitious three year Prosperity Agreement between Belfast Harbour and the Northern Ireland Environment Agency (NIEA).

The agreement will see the Harbour commit to reducing CO2 emissions, reducing waste, improving air and water quality and enhancing both terrestrial and marine biodiversity.

Speaking about the 11th Prosperity Agreement signed by the NIEA, the Minister said: “This is a very ambitious agreement which is an excellent example of Green Growth in action where business can grow and prosper while creating tangible environmental improvements including reducing carbon, waste and water usage.

“The agreement will see Belfast Harbour aim for a net zero target by 2030, improve biodiversity, improve air and water quality, reduce waste and aim for zero waste to landfill. This Prosperity Agreement will also see a benefit to the marine environment and I am delighted that my officials in DAERA will work even more closely with the Harbour to enhance the marine and terrestrial habitats on their 2,000 acre site.

“Belfast Harbour will invest in environmentally friendly and renewable technologies, develop its own energy, air and sustainable procurement strategies and encourage its staff, tenants and port clients to adopt more sustainable transport and resource usage practices.”

Pictured at the RSPB’s ‘Window on Wildlife’, Belfast, are (from left-right) David Dobbin, Chairman, Belfast Harbour, Environment Minister Edwin Poots MLA, Joe O’Neill, Chief Executive, Belfast Harbour and Gregory Woulahan, RSPB.
Photo Credit: William Cherry PressEye

David Dobbin, Chairman Belfast Harbour said: “Belfast Harbour’s commitment to building a truly sustainable, clean, green Port is core to our Trust Port purpose. As we operate, maintain and improve our Port and Harbour Estate, our ambition is to achieve net zero carbon emissions from our operations by 2030, to reduce pollution, and to protect and enhance our natural environment and marine diversity. 

“Work to deliver this is already well underway, as we introduce electric vehicles, develop our use of renewable energy, instigate studies to better understand our marine diversity and embed sustainable development across our 2,000 acre Harbour Estate.

“We are delighted to partner with the Northern Ireland Environment Agency as we accelerate and deliver our sustainability goals. We recognise that through coalition and partnership, together we can achieve so much more. By putting people, place and the environment at the heart of our sustainable business model, Belfast Harbour is developing a clean, green port, where people and planet thrive.”

Joanne Sherwood, RSPB NI Director, added: “There has never been a more important time to invest in the protection and restoration of nature. The pandemic has served as a reminder that our economy and the health of society are dependent on a flourishing natural world: decisions taken now will have a major impact for many years to come so we welcome this commitment from Belfast Harbour.”

The Minister concluded: “It is very fitting that we are signing this agreement at the RSPB Belfast’s Window on Wildlife. This is symbolic, and demonstrates Belfast Harbour’s commitment to placing the environment and sustainability at the centre of their business and I am pleased that my Department will be working in an even closer partnership with them.

“Many businesses are already thinking green – they are already doing the right thing and reaping the benefits. We want to work with progressive organisations like Belfast Harbour who are committed to sustainable growth while enhancing the environment.”

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Belfast City

Children Asked to Share Ideas for Lord Mayor’s Time Capsule

Young people can send their suggestions to the Lord Mayor’s Office via email or share their ideas on Council’s social media channels using the hashtag #BelfastTimeCapsule

Schoolchildren from across Belfast are being invited to share their ideas on what should be included in a time capsule which will be sealed by the city’s Lord Mayor, to be opened in 100 years.

The project is part of Belfast City Council’s Decade of Centenaries programme and aims to provide a snapshot of life in 2021 for generations to come.

Lord Mayor Alderman Frank McCoubrey has himself chosen a number of items to include in the time capsule, including a NI women’s football shirt and  a special medallion to mark the centenary of the formation of Northern Ireland.

“This year marks a hugely significant milestone in Northern Ireland’s history, marking 100 years since the first Northern Ireland Parliament was opened,” said Alderman McCoubrey.

“While this milestone will mean different things for different people, Council’s Decade of Centenaries programme aims to provide a space to reflect on key historical moments and events from 1912-1922 that shaped Northern Ireland and Ireland.

“And as we look ahead to the next 100 years and wonder what life might be like then, I thought creating a time capsule would be an interesting way of capturing a little piece of history and preserving it for generations to come, so that they might have an insight into life in the city in 2021

“I’m hoping that young people will provide some inspiration as to what should be included; all suggestions are welcome but we would like it to be something that is particularly relevant to 2021 and the times we are living through.”

Making History

As a huge supporter of the Northern Ireland football team, Alderman McCoubrey said including the women’s team’s football shirt was an easy decision.

“The achievements of the NI women’s football team in  making history and reaching the Euros is something we can all be very proud of,” said Alderman McCoubrey.

“I hope that when this time capsule is opened in 2121 this achievement will be seen as having been something of a turning point for women in sport, and that it is seen to inspire more young women and girls to get involved in competitive sport.”

Belfast City Council was awarded funding from the Shared History Fund, which The National Lottery Heritage Fund is delivering on behalf of the Northern Ireland Office, to deliver a number of projects to mark Northern Ireland’s centenary year, including the Lord Mayor’s time capsule project.

Young people can send their suggestions to the Lord Mayor’s Office via email or share their ideas on Council’s social media channels using the hashtag #BelfastTimeCapsule

The deadline for suggestions is 4pm on Wednesday 19 May.  All suggestions received will be considered by the Lord Mayor for inclusion in the time capsule which will be stored at City Hall until it is opened in 2121.

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