Raissa crowned Rose of IT

IN a bid to inject a bit of glitz and glamour into a dreary and wintry November the students of IT Tralee's Travel and Tourism Department have staged their own take on the Rose of Tralee.

Aptly re-named 'The Rose of IT Tralee', the event took place last Thursday evening and the students pulled out all the stops to make sure it was as close to the real thing as possible.

They even held the selection in the Carlton Hotel, the venue that hosts the genuine Rose pageant in August.

Thirteen Roses, each accompanied by their own escort, took to the stage in the Carlton where they shared typical Rose stories and anecdotes with the audience and performed various party pieces, including singing, dancing and that traditional Rose of Tralee staple - a piece of homespun Irish poetry.

There was no skimping when it came to glamour either and the contestants, escorts and audience were out in finery to rival anything seen in the festival Dome in August.

As in the real festival, there can be only one winner and the inaugural Rose of IT Tralee crown went to Raissa Smyth who was presented with a sash and a specially commissioned trophy to commemorate her historic win.

The event, which was held to raise funds for the Donal Walsh LiveLife foundation, drew a huge crowd and the organisers have promised a rerun of the event next year.

The IT Tralee Roses and Escorts were: Natasha Kelly and Cathal Slevin; Karen Sheahan and Christian Mangan; Vicky Buckley and Christopher Walsh; Selina Hogan and Ciarán Singleton; Marita McSweeney and Declan Dowling; Caroline Moriarty and Shane O' Connor; Katie Guiney and Richie Raymond; Raissa Smyth and Brian O' Connor; Chloe Kelliher and Gerard McMorrow; Mary Ellen Dineen and James Tiernan; Emma Maunsell and Jamie Murray; Katie Lynch and Paul Murphy; Paula O'Sullivan and James Foley.


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