Pride of Tipperary Festival in full swing

Alicia Lowry with Jane and Caroline Davis at the Pride of Tipperary Gala Banquet in Ballykisteen Hotel. Poicture: Mike Hoare
The 2013 running of the Pride of Tipperary will conclude in Tipperary Town this Saturday night following the Festival Family Fun Raceday at Tipperary Races.

The 2013 running of the Pride of Tipperary will conclude in Tipperary Town this Saturday night following the Festival Family Fun Raceday at Tipperary Races.

The finale will bring to an end a fabulous programme of events which included the Gathering, Fashion Show, Gala Banquet and Table Quiz. All funds raised at each of the events will go to the Tipperary Lions Club following the successful fundraising partnership of the 2012 Festival.

The Festival got under way at Tipperary Racecourse on Thursday June 27th with the official launch and the Gathering of past Pride winners and contestants.

The annual Fashion Extravaganza took place in Aherlow House Hotel on Tuesday 2nd July with models from the Celia Holman-Lee Model Agency taking to the runway to showcase the latest fashions from regional boutiques including: Julies Children’s Wear, Dunnes Stores, Imasa, En Paris, Hats Galore, First Editions and Isobel’s and Sinead’s Boutique, in front of a crowd of over 300 people. At half time of the fashion the contestants were brought on stage individually for the first time to be interviewed by host Jim Keane.

Celia Holman-Lee said: - “I was thrilled to be involved once again with the Pride of Tipperary Festival and the Fashion Show at the beautiful Aherlow House Hotel. I have been coming here for this event for the past 15 years and it is always such a wonderful occasion. The girls did an incredible job this evening and I wish them all the best for the remainder of the competition.”

On Sunday (7th July) attention switched to the Gala Banquet at Ballykisteen Hotel & Golf Resort where over 170 guests including friends and family of the Pride Contestants and their sponsors gathered to celebrate this year’s Festival. Following a champagne reception guests were seated in the main dining room where current Pride of Tipperary Aoife O’Meara gave a heartfelt summary of her year as Pride while a beautiful collage of images was shown on the big screen. Following a lovely meal all twelve contestants took to the stage individually under the expert guidance of Pat Marnane and MC Jim Keane who interviewed each of the girls before they show cased their Party Pieces.

Laura Moore, Chairperson of the Pride of Tipperary committee said: - “Once again the Gala Event was a highlight of the Festival, the girls performed superbly on stage and it was a joy to see them grow into the role as Pride of Tipperary contestant. I would like to use this opportunity to thank the Festival sponsors, Ballykisteen Hotel and Golf Resort, Tipperary Racecourse, Tipperary Co-op SuperValu and Aherlow House Hotel for their on-going support and enthusiasm which ensures the future growth of the Festival.”

Attention now turns to the table quiz this Thursday night and the Festival Finale on Saturday evening. Each of the contestants will take to the stage in the Tipperary Co-op Supervalu car park where the 2013 Pride of Tipperary will be crowned at 9pm.