Mary, Queen of Crafts, launches Yulefest Kilkenny

Siobhan Donohoe

Reporter:

Siobhan Donohoe

Festive fun with an element of sustainability was in the air as Yulefest 2019 was launched at the weekend.
The Christmas festival, now in its fourth year, runs from November 22 to January 6 in Kilkenny.
With a firm focus on sustainability running throughout the festival programme it was fitting that Kilkenny native, TV personality and re-use advocate Mary Fitzgerald, was on hand to officially launch it on Saturday.
Yulefest Kilkenny is a curated and inclusive Christmas festival that welcomes visitors and locals to enjoy and participate in a range of high quality, festive events in Kilkenny City and County throughout the festive season.
It has quickly emerged as a go-to Christmas festival for all the family and received a listing in Skyscanner’s Guide to the Best Christmas Festivals in Ireland 2018.
The official switching on of Kilkenny City’s Christmas lights was held on Saturday evening to a packed and excited crowd on The Parade Plaza. Mayor Martin Brett and Mary Fitzgerald had the crowd counting back from 10 to await the big movement. Santa Claus was on hand too and took a few selfies with the boys and girls in the crowd - or elfies as he calls them!
The celebrations carried out with Star Wars characters, Fíonn the friendly Irish Wolfhound and mascot for the 3rd Infantry Battalion, singalongs with The Lady Desart Choir and Musical Society and surprise guests.
Shop Kilkenny
Shoppers were also encouraged to ‘Shop Kilkenny’ as it offers an easier way to be sustainable this Christmas and local spending helps to shape our community and the future of where we live, work and play.
Coming up this weekend are family friendly workshops (Saturday) in Rothe House. Yulefest Kilkenny ReCreate workshops are sessions where everyone can get involved and explore our reuse sustainable materials.
Partnering with over 260 Irish companies, ReCreate Ireland divert more than 200 tonnes of materials from landfill each year. People can drop in and make a Christmas hats, stockings or Christmas cards or build the tallest tower from the reuse materials. These workshops are facilitated by local artists and are free but pre-booking required.
For full details on this event, and the full festival programme, see www.yulefestkilkenny.ie.