Sarah Cahill, Cliona O'Connor, Siofra Coogan and Isobel O'Connor at the Festival of Light in Castlecomer PICTURE: PAT MOORE
Castlecomer certainly shone bright on Friday when the town came out in force for the Festival of Light 2018.
Thousands of people gathered in the square to launch the month long festival of Christmas, creativity and community. The evening began with a lively festive concert featuring local entertainment from the Community School Choir, the Community School Trad band and the Castlecomer Men’s Choir. The atmosphere was enhanced by MC John Coogan and an array of market stalls of local producers including the local S.O.S and Transition year students as well as local craft makers.
There was great excitement as Santa arrived on a fire truck and switched on the lights with local representatives. This was the cue to begin the annual “Parade of Light” which saw hundreds of school children raise up their home made lanterns to create a real spectacle through the town. The parade was led by St. Patrick’s Brass Band, who led the parade followed by the Discovery Park Christmas train through the town.
The light parade led by children and their families made their way through the town to the Elf Village at the Discovery Park, where the crowds were treated to a truly festive experience. The woodlands were festooned with lights creating a wonderful Christmas ambiance. This was enhanced by a performance by the soulful spirit choir who delighted audiences with a host of Christmas songs. For little ones and not so little ones, there were free ice creams and cotton candy from the vintage ice cream truck at the elf village. Santa was on hand to meet and greet and children were encouraged to enjoy the adventure activities at the Discovery Park. The woodlands at the Park are completely transformed for the Christmas experience and visitors enjoyed spending time in this magical atmosphere.
“We were delighted to see such an amazing turn out for our Festival of Light, thousands of people gathered in the Square and the Elf Village at the Discovery Park to enjoy an evening of entertainment and festive fun. There was a real sense of community pride and the event offered a chance for people to come together and kick off the festive season. Thanks to the LCDC, Kilkenny County Council, Yulefest, Castlecomer Discovery Park, Synergy Group and all the volunteers who helped us on the night. I would like to especially thank Fiona McHardy for all her energy and commitment in making this event such a success” Kathy Purcell Festival of Light Committee member
The finale of the event was a fire display by Wobbly Circus who enthralled the crowds in the crisp winter evening.
The event was a huge success and attracted even greater numbers than 2017, it was great start to the month long festival where people can see the town lit up with festive silhouettes especially on iconic buildings such as Creamery house.
The Magical Christmas Experience at Castlecomer Discovery Park runs to December 23. Book on www.discoverypark.ie/christmas