THE Christmas party season began in earnest over the weekend with pubs, restaurants and taxi drivers reporting a very busy weekend and revellers packing Tralee town centre on Friday and Saturday night.
Christmas parties always provide a huge boost to Tralee's hospitality sector and this year is no exception. While money remains tight, publicans and restaurant owners in Tralee said Christmas still brings people out to celebrate.
Even though numbers were down on the heady days of the boom, most pub and restaurant owners said they had still enjoyed a very successful weekend with most saying it was the busiest they had been in several months.
As well as a huge number of small pre-Christmas office parties and gatherings, there were also a number of large parties in hotels around town, including the Dairymaster party held in Ballygarry Hotel and the Borg Warner party at the Carlton.
Taxi drivers also reported a badly needed bump in business with a long awaited influx of Christmas shoppers and numerous private parties and get togethers in houses all over Tralee adding to what was already a busy few days.
Despite the large numbers of revellers on the streets, the town remained largely trouble free with only a small handful of minor public order incidents reported to gardaí.
An even busier weekend is expected this week with most pubs, restaurants and venues playing host to range of large and small parties on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.