From Castlebar - County Mayo -

Community Groups
Flying the Flag
12, Mar 2009 - 08:55

Castlebar's 2009 parade will be a big one. The latest news is that Fossetts Circus will participate in the parade adding a touch of the exotic to the county town.

The Parade assembles at the Industrial Estate beside McHale Park, at 14.30 and moves off at 15.00 on St Patrick's Day. The theme of this year's Parade is "Keeping the Flag Flying", and Johnny Mee, the secretary of the organising committee, says this title was chosen because the committee felt the people of Castlebar and Mayo needed a boost to their morale in those tight economic times.
St. Patricks BNS flying the flag in the 2008 Parade!

He says it is very important this year that the people of the town come out on St Patrick's Day to fly the national flag and other emblems, and make the day the most colourful and enjoyable in the history of Castlebar.

The Parade will be led by chief marshal Seán Horkan, former Irish amateur heavyweight boxing champion and Manager of the Irish team on a number of occasions. It is expected that eight bands will take part in the Parade, including the famous Castlebar Concert Band and the Bata Fada Band from Crimlin, Castlebar. The reviewing stand will be located at Main Street where the master of ceremonies will be Henry McGlade. Providing the music on stage will be the Kilkenny Family Band, which specialises in céilí music, and Michael Fox from Foxford. Many colourful floats and novelty items will be included in the Parade which will traverse the main streets of Castlebar. There are attractive cash prizes in the different categories.

The Duffy/Coady memorial trophy will be awarded to the person who, in the opinion of the judges, has worked in a voluntary capacity for the good of the local community over the years. The trophy commemorates the late Kathleen Duffy, who was matron of Mayo County Hospital, for many years.

The Parade usually attracts in the region of 10,000 people to Castlebar, including many overseas visitors and people from different parts of the West of Ireland.

The St Patrick's Day Parade in Castlebar, is one of the biggest parades in the West of Ireland. In these recessionary times the theme for this year's Parade is apt - "Keeping the Flag Flying"!

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