Plans for the St. Patrick’s Week Celebrations in Clonmel are now almost finalised. The celebrations are under the theme of ‘Dare to Dream-make it happen’ and will be led by Grand Marshall David Power, the manager of the successful Tipperary Minor Football team, a man who dared to dream and indeed made it happen.
The celebrations kick off on Thursday, 15th March with the annual Historical Lecture in the Council Chamber of the Town Hall at 8pm. The subject is ‘David Malcolmson-a hero for our times’ and it tells the story of Clonmel’s most famous industrialist. The lecture will be chaired by the Mayor, Cllr. Darren Ryan and will be given by local historian and author Dr.Michael Ahern. This is sure to be an entertaining and informative lecture and admission is free. The event also affords citizens of Clonmel and surrounding areas the opportunity to visit and see the seat of local government in the town.
Celebrations continue on Friday, 16th with the annual St. Patrick’s Eve Gala Dinner and Dance in Hotel Minella. The Grand Marshall David Power will be presented with his sash of office and the visiting Mayor of Reading welcomed to the town.
This year the Clonmel Traders Association, Clonmel Local Heroes committee and Clonmel Chamber of Commerce have come together to present an award to a group or organisation that has lived up to theme of this year’s celebrations ‘Dare to Dream-make it happen’. A number of groups have been nominated and the winners will be announced at the Gala Dinner. There will be a short traditional musical interlude after dinner with dancing afterwards to Marty Daniels and his band, In recognition of the difficult financial circumstances many people face, Cumann Tobar Naomh Phadraig are again subsidising the cost of the tickets, which look exceptional value at €35. Tickets are available from PJ Long at (052-6121432) and various other outlets throughout the town.
St. Patrick’s Day starts early with the raising of the National and Papal flags at St. Patrick’s Well at 8am. The flags, symbols of our Irish and Christian heritage, represent the official start of the celebrations in the place where St. Patrick came to in this area over 1500 years ago.
At 11.30 am the Mayor, the members of the Borough Council, local civic dignitaries and various guests will parade from the Town Hall, led by Banna Chluain Meala, to noon Mass in St. Mary’s. This Mass, which is celebrated in Irish, is one of the traditional highlights of St. Patrick’s Day.
The Annual Parade commences at 3.30pm but throughout the day there will be craft displays under the Main Guard and children’s face painting. From 2pm onwards there will be traditional Irish Music and Dancing on the reviewing stand outside the Town Hall. A number of hostelries are also organising various entertainments in the lead-up to the Parade. The intention is to make the entire event a family-friendly day out.
The Parade commences in Irishtown at 3.30pm and already a record entry has been received. The committee is appealing to any group that intends to take part to contact the Secretary PJ Long as soon as possible at firstname.lastname@example.org to confirm your entry. Given the huge entry this information is needed to allocate slots.
Cumann Naomh Phadraig acknowledges the huge help and assistance from the members and officials of Clonmel Borough Council in planning these events, as well as the Gardai and Civil Defence. The committee is also grateful to the three local business organisations for their support, More details of all the events will be announced next week.