WITH only weeks to go, the St Patrick’s Day Riverside Festival in Clara is now at an advanced stage of planning.
The festival will take place immediately after the towns St Patrick’s Day parade at Riverside Park, Charlestown Bridge on the Tullamore road.
The centrepiece of the festival will be “Aqua Sphereing” a new concept where people can walk on water using a large inflatable ball. It is the first time such an event has taken place in Clara.
Other activities such as face painting and balloon modelling are also in place for the afternoon.
The festival is the idea of local 11-year-old boy Craig Flynn, who hopes it will have two effects.
Firstly he hopes it will encourage people to use the park, and appreciate the river more, and also give children something extra to do after the parade finishes.
Funding is already in place and Craig wishes to point out that the Riverside Festival will not take from any of the funds raised for the parade itself.
The majority of the funds for the riverside event have been raised by a special Wren Boys collection at Christmas with additional funds coming from Craig’s own pocket money.
There will be a small charge for some activities on the day, but the 11 year points out that all profits made will go to the St Patrick’s day committee with a small donation, if possible to the Clara tidy towns for the upkeep of the park.
Craig has been working closely with parade organiser Bertie McMahon in planning the event.
The pair are now appealing for volunteers to help both on the afternoon itself and with preparations leading up to the festival. Anyone wishing to assist can contact Bertie or Craig.