Craic is mighty in first parade

by Gazette Reporter

OVER 5,000 attended the Dublin 15 parade, where a healthy mix of green, white and orange was on view as the area held its first ever St Patrick’s Day festival.
Proceedings kicked off at 2.30pm with over 50 community groups taking part including sports, cultural, and ethnic groups representing the different nationalities living in the area.
The crowds lined the streets along the entire route from The Bell pub to Blanchardstown shopping centre.
Deputy Mayor of Fingal Ted Leddy (FG) said that since this was the area’s first ever parade they were surprised at how successful it was.
He said about 5,000 people were there. Amid the festivities there was food, Irish dancing and the world famous craic agus ceoil.
Meanwhile in the city centre a sea of green, white and orange poured through the streets for the annual St Patrick’s Day parade and festivities.
About half a million people lined the capital’s streets between Parnell Square and St Patrick’s Cathedral to witness the nation’s largest celebration.
This year’s parade adopted the theme of Celebrate Now in recognition of Ireland’s contemporary arts and culture exploits.
Featuring bands and performers from around the world, this year’s procession was led by Grand Marshal comedian Brendan O’Carroll.
At noon on the dot, the Lord Mayor’s horse-drawn carriage led off the parade, trailing behind St Patrick himself. Loud cheers then followed as O’Carroll and his wife, Jennifer Gibney, rode past in a vintage car, waving and shouting classical Mrs Brown lines that everyone knows so well.
The day was soon brought to life by leading pageant companies from around the world, displaying some fantastic creations and thrilling performances.
Amid the colourful pageantry, bands from the USA, Mexico, Germany and Ireland delivered uplifting scores and inspiring rhythms.
This spectacular procession then proceeded its way through the heart of Dublin city, bursting with colour and theatrics.
Throughout the duration of the parade the Gazette asked a number of foreign visitors how their day was going and what they thought of the city on this national day of celebration.
Prasanth Sukumar from India attended the parade with his wife and two young children.
Speaking to The Gazette he said this year’s festival was by far the most colourful.
“The floats and performances are really fantastic and there seems to be a lot of life from everyone taking part in this year’s parade.
“Out of all the St Patrick’s Day parades I’ve seen this one is definitely the most colourful.”
A high school class from Florida who came to Dublin especially for the parade and its festivities said they were overwhelmed by the friendliness and hospitality they received during their stay.
Ramon Garcia from Spain who went to the parade with his wife, daughter and twin sons said: “It was a really good idea to come out to the parade this morning.
“Everyone seems to have smiles on their faces and you get so much more out of the parade compared to watching it on the TV.”

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