Ardee hosts Darkness Walk event
The second annual Ardee Darkness Into Light walk for Pieta House takes place this Saturday morning at 4.15am, with an excess of 900 people expected to come out and walk to raise funds for self-harm and suicide prevention.
The committee in Ardee have been working tirelessly for several months in advance of the event. Last year, the committee and participants raised a stunning €40,000 for the charity.
The walk will start and finish at Ardee Parish Centre. Participants will take in Hale Street, Castleguard, the N33 Link Road, the N2 and the town's main streets before arriving back at the Parish Centre where refreshments will be available. Walkers and runners are asked to arrive for 3.45am ahead of the 4.15am start. A representative from Pieta House will be present to speak to the walkers and lead the crowd in reciting the Darkness Into Light manifesto before the start.
"Excitement has been steadily building for a few months and now that the walk is just around the corner, we can't wait for the night itself," committee member Barry Landy said. "Last year's first DIL walk in Ardee was more successful than we could ever have hoped for and once again the people of Ardee and mid-Louth have been very supportive for this cause that is so, so worthy.
"Everyone knows some person who has been affected by mental health issues, engaged in self-harm or someone who has been bereaved by suicide - even if they don't know it," he continued. "Many people suffer in silence and our message is that no one has to do that. There is always someone available to talk, listen and help.
Car parking will not be available at Ardee Parish Centre, but car parks at Ardee Business Park, Lanney's Super Valu and the Church of the Nativity of Our Lady will be open.
Participants are advised to bring weatherproof clothing in the event of rain as well as wearing as visible attire as possible. They are also asked to bring a torch. Dogs are welcome but owners are asked to please keep them on a short lead and are kindly requested to start from the back, in the interests of safety.
Anyone who has not yet registered can still do so online up until the walk on 11 May, but please note your t-shirt will would not arrive in time for the walk itself. Registration will not be taken at the event.
Queries can be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org or via the Darkness Into Light Ardee Facebook page.