9,000 attend festival

By Hayden Moore

CROWDS in their thousands turned out to the ninth Clondalkin Village Festival to celebrate what makes their town what it is through community spirit and with sheer jubilation.

The festivities kicked off on Friday evening with a pop-up Gaeltacht and historical talk before Clondalkin Garda Station held its open day with great success on the Saturday and The Laurel’s Charity Crew had their fun village cycle.

Clondalkin Village Festival 2019 Hayden pics 12 1

Despite attendance down slightly, organisers are delighted with success of ninth Clondalkin Village festival

Despite some rain showers early on Sunday, an estimated 9,000 turned out as the sun splashed the pedestrianised Tower Road and Main Street with tents filling Tuthill’s car park for the festival’s showpiece, the Family Fun Day.

Festival director, Thyes Kavanagh told The Echo of how they began planning the weekend at the start of the year and how delighted the organisers, Clondalkin Chamber of Commerce, were with how it turned out overall.

“When you start planning it in January, you can’t plan for the weather and we did get a little bit of rain on Sunday morning so attendance was a little bit down throughout the day because of that, but we’re happy overall,” said Mr Kavanagh.

“Put it this way, there was a lot of happy shiny faces there on Sunday, it was a great family day out.

“No matter how many face painters you get, there are always queues – people love it – but the most popular thing there is definitely the stage.”

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Jennifer Comerford with her daughter Ella Nicholl and Denis Wiggie

Audiences were transfixed by the 12 stage performers, with singer Rachel Greene opening the day, Funky Steps Dance School rocking the Main Stage with Baby Shark during the day before Clondalkin Youth Band closed out the entire festival when they marched down the Tower Road.

Also keeping the masses entertained were the series of street performers including the quirky Australian magician, Sammy Showtime and the comedy police clown, Sergeant Sniffer, who roamed the village keeping everyone in check.

Expanding on the depth of performers and how the weekend weighed up with the previous eight, Thyes said: “We may have been down on headcount but the quality of performers made up for it.

“We’ve never had so many performers before and we just wanted to put on a bit of a variety show, they’re all volunteers you see as well, so they all wanted to be up there on stage performing.

“I think the quality was better than any other year we’ve had.”

As the festival hits double figures next year, the member of Clondalkin Chamber of Commerce said: “With it being the 10th anniversary next year it would be a pity if we didn’t do it again – we’ll either go even bigger or not at all.

“There’s a new committee next year, and I’m not really too sure how Brexit may affect the insurance cost of holding an event this big, so we’ll have to wait and see – but I’d say we’ll go again because it is the 10th one.”

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