Ferns comes alive for Fleadh Garman
Ferns was filled with the sound of live music, singing and dancing, as over 2,000 people came to the visit the village to enjoy the 15th year of the competition.
With a gig rig erected on the Main Street, dancing and performance was encouraged, and the organising committee reported children as young as six and adults ranging up to the age of 76 all getting involved.
The big event was when 500 competitors competed for coveted places in the Leinster Fleadh, which is due to take place in July.
The winners from the Ferns branch were: Adam Dunne in the under 12s miscellaneous; Aoife Murphy, under 12s in piano and accordion; Leah Sweeney, under 15s tin whistle; Thomas Byrne, under 18s miscellaneous; Megan Dunbar, under 18s tin whistle; and William Dunne, senior fiddle.
'We really enjoyed hosting the fleadh this year. As competitors competed in the venues Scoil Naomh Maodhog, the community centre and St Aidan's boxing hall, there was an intense competitive spirit as it was a really big event,' said John Furlong, chairperson of the organising committee.
'But there was plenty of time to perform on the street and on the gig rig, with performances given by St. Colman's Pipe Band Ballindaggin and the Furlong school of Irish dancing, in the heart of Ferns,' he said.
'To everybody who helped out in any way, you made the Fleadh a great success. The Ferns branch would like to thank Helena Dunbar, traditional music teacher, who has helped competitors throughout,' he said.
The organising committee wish to extend their thanks on behalf of their branch to Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Éireann.
Comhaltas Ceoltóirí Éireann is the largest group involved in the preservation and promotion of Irish traditional music, and it is a non-profit cultural movement with hundreds of local branches, located all around the world.
It aims to keep traditions like Irish music, song and dance alive.