Last week's St Patrick's Day parade in Kilkenny City is being described by many as Kilkenny’s best-ever St Patrick’s Day Parade, according to festival chairman CMalcolm Noonan.
The local councillor says that Kilkenny is now a significant destination, and is providing a real counter balance to Dublin for St Patrick’s weekend. He said that the committee were particularly pleased with the quality and increased level of participation in the parade and that it was greatly enhanced by the involvement of Callan Creative Community, Cartoon Saloon and Bui Bolg from Wexford.
"In a unique setting, five Mayors from our partner municipalities followed by our great Grand Marshalls; the Kilkenny Camogie teams made for a great spectacle," said Cllr Noonan.
He also said that the strong interpretation of the Jonathan Swift theme by many community groups was incredible and that it was the first year that he could recall where the theme was taken up on to such a degree by community groups.
"We also had an event that was unparalleled in any parade before; live animation by Cartoon Saloon as the parade moved through the streets," he said.
"This worked brilliantly and we were amazed at the quality of entries to the Swift art competition, with two lucky schools winning the finished murals.
"We are so grateful to the community groups from around the County who put in such amazing efforts and creativity into their floats, to St Patrick’s Brass and Reed Band and our visiting band from Germany. We are eternally grateful for the support of Kilkenny Gardai, Order of Malta, to the staff of Kilkenny County Council and to all who make our task easier on the day. Organising the parade has become a huge health and safety exercise and we are fortunate to have built up such a good level of support and expertise down the years."