Dream come true for Colleen
IT IS every little girl's dream, but for one lucky lady it came true when she got to be a Rose for a day.
Colleen Whelan (14) from Graiguenamanagh in Co Kilkenny has always dreamed of representing her county at the Rose of Tralee International Festival and this year got a taster of how good that would be.
She and her parents Sean and Liz and older sister Niamh were whisked off to Co Kerry to take part in the festival, thanks to the Share a Dream Foundation.
Unlike most teenagers, Colleen has been through an awful lot in her life and has Ulcerated Colitis.
She had to have her large intestine removed and now has a colostomy bag for her bowel for the rest of her life. But she hasn't let this hold her back.
"I am going to be the Kilkenny rose and win purely because of my charm and hurling skills," she said with a cheeky grin.
Colleen's adventure began on Thursday evening when the family was met by a garda escort and brought to the Fels Point Hotel.
The following day she was taken shopping before calling in to the hairdresser and beautician to make her the belle of the Rose Ball.