Excitement building around Tralee as the festival nears

It's the beginning of August, the Dome is up, the lights are up, and excitement is building ahead of the start of Kerry's most important annual international tourism event, the Rose of Tralee International Festival.

Final preparations are now well under way with the festival now just over two weeks away.

The Roses and Rose Escorts will arrive in Tralee on Wednesday August 15 and will attend a family night at Kingdom Greyhound Stadium and the Recovery Haven's Celebration of Light event at Tralee Bay Wetlands on that date.

On Thursday August 16 they will visit three locations around the county, organised by Kerry County Council.

The Celebration of Roses event will take place in the Festival Dome from 8pm on Thursday August 16 before the festival entertainment gets underway in earnest on Friday August 17.

The street entertainment alone will cost €355,000 this year to present a line-up of family-friendly, free and affordable fun from Friday August 17 up to Tuesday August 21.

The High Kings, Jake Carter, Sean and Conor Price, Hermitage Green - will all will perform free on Denny Street.

The amazing inflatable world of light and colour, the Miracoco Luminarium, will span the length and breadth of Páirc an Phiarsaigh while Tesco Family Town will be bigger and better than ever.

Festival organisers are making a special appeal to those people and to everyone in business to please do the right thing and make a reasonable contribution to an event that has served Tralee so well in good times and in bad.

Contributions towards this year's street festival may be made by cash or cheque, payable to: Kerry Rose Festival Ltd, Ashe Memorial Hall, Denny Street, Tralee, Kerry.