Kingdom Rose Buds wanted for festival

Kerry girls are being encouraged to apply to become Rose Buds at this year's Rose of Tralee Festival.

Applications to be a Rose Bud opened this week and three of last year's Kerry Rose Buds - Niamh Harty from Ballyheigue, Ciara Harris from Tralee and Geraldine Knott from Kilflynn - met Rose of Tralee Maggie McEldowney recently to launch this year's search for new Rose Buds.

Each lucky Rose Bud will be twinned with a Rose, take part in two parades, attend an exclusive Rose Bud Party with the Roses and much more during the week-long festival.

Fifty children from Kerry and beyond will be chosen through the direct application process, while a further 15 Rose Bud places will be allocated through various Rose of Tralee and associated sponsors' promotions over the coming months.

Rose Bud places are open to girls aged from six to 10 and application forms can be downloaded;, Crag Cave and the Rose of Tralee International Festival Office on Denny Street in Tralee.

The deadline for the receipt of completed application forms and the non-refundable €25 registration fee is 5pm on Wednesday May 24.

Successful applicants will also be required to make a €50 contribution to cover costs.