Today’s the day. The 2017 AOIFA (Association of Irish Floral Artists) Celtic Way National Flower Festival gets underway in Ardee tonight, with RTE personality Mary Kennedy officially opening the event at the Church of the Nativty at 7.30pm.
Among those performing will be Ardee Concert Band and Ruth Kelly Brady, and her children’s choir too. Over the last number of days, floral artists from all over Ireland have come to set up their installations and exhibits ahead of the three day event.
After Friday’s opening, the festival takes place in the Church of the Nativity and St Marys Church of Ireland on Saturday (11am-6pm) and Sunday (1-6pm). There’s also a floral art exhibition ongoing in Ardee Library, which remains open during library opening hours throughout the festival.
As preparations have ramped up over the last two weeks, one of the most eye-catching aspects of the festival promotion has been the colourful signs dotted around the town at various places. It seems like they’re everywhere – and it’s easy to see why. There’s 60 of them.
Kindly donated by outgoing Ardee Community School art department head Mary Kavanagh, the signs have been painted by first year students at the school.
They’ve been received incredibly well by locals and it’s little surprise, they really brighten the place up a lot. If you’d like one for yourself, you can grab one too! The signs will be for sale after the flower festival, costing €10 each.
This year, the festival’s chosen partner charity is the Irish Association for Cancer Research, with all proceeds of the sales going direct to the association.