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15 Feb 2016

2+ million Americans to see images of Northern Ireland on NBC this St Patrick’s Day

Images of counties Down and Fermanagh will be beamed into the homes of more than two million Americans this St Patrick’s Day. Footage is being filmed this week in Northern Ireland, and elsewhere around the island of Ireland, and will air on NBC television in New York during its live coverage of the St Patrick’s Day parade in New York. Coverage of the parade on NBC will be sponsored by Tourism Ireland once again this year.

The NBC broadcast will highlight Northern Ireland’s Year of Food and Drink and our superb culinary offering; Christian Heritage and the St Patrick’s Trail; as well as our Game of Thrones connections.

In Fermanagh, the NBC crew visited Lough Erne Resort, where they filmed chef Noel McMeel in action in the hotel’s kitchen. Noel also brought the crew on a tour of the area, to meet some of his favourite local food producers – including butcher Pat Doherty and beef and lamb farmer Maurice Kettyle, as well as Erin Groves, who sources local ingredients for her jams and chutneys.

Alison Metcalfe, Tourism Ireland’s head of North America, said: “We were delighted to invite the NBC crew to film in Northern Ireland, which is an excellent opportunity to showcase the destination to a huge audience of more than 2 million Americans. People everywhere instantly identify St Patrick’s Day with the island of Ireland and that heightened profile at this time of year allows us to put our holiday experience in the spotlight in the United States.

“Tourism Ireland is taking every opportunity to highlight and celebrate our wonderful food and drink scene throughout 2016, promoting Northern Ireland food in the US and elsewhere around the world. We are inviting everyone to come and enjoy 366 days of celebration – where they can discover the best of local produce and have the chance to experience the wonderful landscapes and coastline which make Northern Ireland so special.”

Tourism Ireland will undertake a busy programme of consumer and trade promotions in North America around St Patrick’s Day. For the first time ever, 7 World Trade Center at Ground Zero in New York, the famous Boston Red Sox (baseball team) and Reunion Hall in Dallas will join Tourism Ireland’s Global Greening initiative on March 17, joining other sites like the Empire State Building, the famous ‘Welcome’ sign in Las Vegas and City Hall in Toronto.

Arrangements for the NBC crew’s itinerary were put in place by Tourism NI.

  NBC producer Candice Spielman (right), filming Lough Erne Resort’s Executive Chef Noel McMeel (centre), during their visit to local food producer Theresa O’Hare, Orchard Acre Farm (left).

Notes To Editors

  • Tourism Ireland is the organisation responsible for promoting Northern Ireland and the island of Ireland overseas as a leading holiday destination.
  • Tourism is responsible for in excess of 5.2% of GDP in Northern Ireland and supports approximately 43,000 jobs.
  • In 2015, we welcomed about 1.9 million overseas visitors to Northern Ireland, delivering revenue of about £454 million.
  • Tourism Ireland’s international website is, available in ten different language versions for over 30 individual markets around the world. In 2015, attracted about 16.6 million visitors.