Carrig-on-Bannow's St Patrick's Day Parade was a big success despite freezing temperatures, bitingly cold north-easterly wind and the imminent threat of snow.
The parade attracted more than 25 walking groups and floats as well as vintage vehicles and machinery from the immediate locality and neighbouring areas, such as Rathangan and Duncormick.
The Grand Marshal was one of Carrig-on-Bannow's oldest residents, Mrs Mary Sinnott, while the Master of Ceremonies was Tony Jeffares, a man with the gift of the gab and a talented ability to ad lib. Among those on the reviewing stand were local priest Fr Jim Kehoe and Fr Pender of Ballymitty. The adjudicator was Mrs Banville.
The prize for Overall Best Entry was won by 'Back to the Eighties', an entertaining tribute to the 1980s' including popular TV shows like the A Team and games such as the Rubix Cube.
'Last year we had a lot of Donald Trumps and this year we had a couple of floats on the theme of the Beast from the East including a Snowmobile with supplies of bread and milk,' said committee member Catherine Comer.
Talented members of Danescastle Music Group provided most of the music in the parade before heading to the National Opera House later that day for Céilí House.
The Joe Monaghan Award went to a specially-made car styled on Chitty Chitty Bang Bang while the Judges Award was presented to Bannow Community Responders for their life-saving work all year round in the community.
The Best Business Advertising prize was won by the Red Door Cafe which turned up with a replica mini-red door. 'The parade is very much community-based. The main emphasis is on participation. The idea is to give local children a chance to participate in their own parade. That was one of the main reasons we started it', said Catherine. Up to 150 children from schools and groups took part in the ninth annual event. Plans are already taking place for an extra-special parade next year to celebrate the 10th anniversary. 'We are very grateful to all the local businesses that provides sponsorship. We don't charge groups to enter', said Catherine.