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Edenderry Harbour Millennium Festival

Edenderry is set to mark the millennium this September by hosting the first ever harbour festival. The festival will run from Friday 8th to Sunday 10th September and will have events and entertainment to suit everyone.

The festival is being organised by Edenderry Harbour Development Association which was successful in obtaining a grant from Offaly County Council's Millennium Fund. The Association was set up in June 1999 and has gone from strength to strength. Initially it embarked upon the relandscaping of the harbour and following from that success it began to install new seating and lighting along the harbour. These projects benefit the local community and visitors alike.

The festival will celebrate this new look harbour and aims to bring people up to the canal and show what a wonderful resource it is to the town. To really experience the canal, barge trips have been organised for the weekend which will go down to Downshire Bridge. The majority of activities are focused on the canal and a barge will be used as the stage for concerts and talent contests.

The festival will be opened with a switch on off the new harbour lights followed by a concert by the up and coming band 'INFOCUS'. On the Saturday there will be a parade from market square to the harbour which will be led by a 12 piece samba band. The band will be accompanied by local children who will be trained by the band prior to the parade and costumes will also be provided. If you would like to take part, pick up an entry form. A fancy dress competition is also being organised and participants are encouraged to take part in the parade.

Greeting the parade at the harbour will be street performers from the famous Belfast Circus School. These performers are regularly seen in Temple Bar and other major festivals in the country. If you are interested in sport there are basketball competitions, penalty shoot outs as well as Tug O'War. If you are not active why not go along to the Art and crafts exhibition and also learn about the history of the canal at the Historical Society's display.

There will be entertainment all through the festival with talent competitions being held on both days and if you enjoy a flutter why not sponsor a plastic duck in what is sure to be an unforgettable race along the canal. Each evening will be rounded off by live music at the harbour by local bands.

So why not come along and see what is on offer and take part in the many events. Full programmes and entry forms are available from Anne at Dempsey Travel and Thomas at O'Connell Furniture in Edenderry.