From two day festivals to traditional parades to morning mass, Laois is celebrating St Patrick’s Day in energetic style all around the county.
In the county town, St Patrick's Day committee has prepared a feast of family fun from Saturday afternoon until Sunday evening March 16 to 17, with the parade setting off at 12.30pm
Mountmellick's parade is also a central feature of two days of music and fun, from trad to hip-hop. The parade sets off at 2pm, with special guest, Paralympian Nicole Turner from Portarlington.
Unicorns, fairies, goblins and monsters are all welcome, for the exciting theme of 'Mythical Creatures and Characters from around the world. With free entry, a big parade of local schools, businesses, clubs and groups is expected. It sets off at 12.30.
Special guests are the talented Camross Comhaltas opening the parade followed by local duo Radio Nowhere. Shannon Street will be closed off for the day for bouncing castles, a shooting range and fun games. Mascots will represent local primary schools, dressed as their favourite mythical creature. To perform or take part in Mountrath phone 085 2834412.
St Patrick's Day parade will assemble at St Fergal's College at 12.30pm and set off at 1pm sharp. Refreshments will be provided in the Parochial Hall after the parade followed by a highly entertaining "Spuds and Spakes" session with Michael Creagh and guests. A raffle will also be held for an Aberdeen Angus Calf on the day. Entry fee to participate is €20 euro per club or float. Contact Mary Hennessy at 087 2849268.
Stradbally Vicarstown Timahoe Parades
The parish will hold its traditional three parades to morning masses, for the 30th year this St Patrick’s Day.
The Vicarstown Parade is first, to 9.30am Mass, the Timahoe parade is to 10.30am Mass and in Stradballythe parade proceeds to 11.30am Mass.
The theme is 'Our Very Own Place & People' reflecting pride in their communities. School children will play and dance and show their project 'Education In Our Community'. St Patrick's Day cake and a cuppa will be offered after the three parades and celebrations.
In Timahoe, Timahoe Folk Choir will hold a cake sale and coffee morning in Timahoe Community Hall after Mass on St Patrick's Day in aid of new seating and sound equipment.
St Patrick's Day entertainment in Abbeyleix kicks off in the square at 12 noon. The parade starts at 12.30pm.
Monasterevin will host a family fun day ahead of their parade. The fun starts at 11am, and a community walk starts at Hopkins Memorial at 12noon. There will be a dog show, a cafe, baby show, DJ, and children’s entertainment. The parade starts from the canal at 3pm.
Killeshin will hold its 35th annual St Patrick’s Day parade. Assemble at the new school for 9.20am, to Sunday mass in Holy Cross Church at 10am.
The Graiguecullen Parade will include the Killeshin Pipe Band and the Presentation School Band. assemble in the town park at 1030.am, the parde begins at 11am and travels to St Clare's Church for 11.30am Mass via Colclough Ave, St Clare's Rd, Pearse Rd, Maher Rd, '98 Street and Maryborough Street. All houses asked to put out flags. Parking at Graiguecullen GFC.
The parade in Ballyroan takes place after 9.30am mass.
In Spink the GAA club hosts the parade, and welcome all groups or individuals in the parish to take part. It sets off at 10.15am.
For entrants who have staved off the cold and are eager to show off their floats at a later parade, Rosenallis is this year welcoming entrants from surrounding towns to its parade, which starts at 3pm. Call Mick Cleare 087 4163867.
Buy next Tuesday's Leinster Express for all the photos around the county!
See www.leinsterexpress.ie for videos of parades on Sunday evening!
Finally Met Eireann has issued weather warnings for the weekend so wrap up warm and enjoy the fun!