Picture: 2015 International Rose of Tralee hopefuls at the George Boutique Hotel on their last day of their tour around Ireland. A winner will be selected tomorrow. Picture: Jonathan Baynes.
The International Rose of Tralee 2015 festival is almost at an end, with a new rose being named tomorrow. The festival, running from Friday, August 14 – Tuesday, August 18, has been filled with exciting events, promising an entertaining final day.
Maria Walsh, 2014 International Rose of Tralee, has raised the bar for future roses with her active role in the community and charitable work. Anthony O’Gara, Executive Chair of the Rose of Tralee, spoke about Maria and her eventful and philanthropic year.
“Maria Walsh has been a phenomenal Rose, so involved with a number of charities. She’s been an incredible ambassador for the Rose of Tralee. It’s always bittersweet for the reigning Rose when the year comes to an end, but she’s had a great year and the ladies have a lot to live up to.”
Maria, with the help of a dedicated team, organised her Trek 2 Tralee event, where they walked, ran and cycled 242km from Maria’s hometown in Shrule, Co Mayo, to Denny St in Tralee.
All funds raised go to; the Barretstown Charity, an organisation what works to help rebuild the lives of children affected by serious illness, Donal Walsh #LiveLife, a charity that provides appropriate facilities for seriously ill, terminal teenagers and Development Perspectives, which tackles the root causes of poverty, inequality and climate change through education in local and global communities.
Bringing to an end her time as the 2014 International Rose of Tralee, Maria embarked on a tandem parachute jump, landing in Tralee Town Park in the midst of the festival, earlier today. The jump was a part of the biggest SkyFest Air Display ever staged during the Rose of Tralee International Festival.
Market stalls, fireworks displays and petting zoos are just some of the features of the festival, made to cater to the tastes and interests of everyone in attendance.
Our local Rose Bríd Madigan, who is representing Scotland, is raking in the Limerick support. Bríd, living in Scotland for the past three years training as a primary school teacher, entered the competition as a way to hold onto her Irish roots and culture.
“Living abroad, you want to make some connections with the Irish community in any way you can. It was always great to meet up with the Irish girls in Scotland.
Nollaig Malone, Miss Limerick 2015, is one of many showing support for Bríd: “I got to meet all these beautiful ladies and see how they get on with each other. But fingers crossed for the Scotland Rose, because she’s from Limerick and all.”
Nollaig greeted the Roses as they arrived at the George Boutique Hotel on Shannon St, for the last leg of their tour around the country. Miss Limerick, who will be representing her county in the upcoming Miss Ireland competition on August 28, was grateful for the opportunity to welcome the Roses.
“It feels amazing being able to be here and welcome all the roses to Limerick. I’m just lapping it all up, I love every minute of it.
The 2015 International Rose of Tralee will be selected on the Tues Aug 18, the final day of the festivities.
Visit the official Rose of Tralee website here
Visit the official George Boutique Hotel website here
Read more about the Rose of Tralee Festival here
Photos by Jonathan Baynes for I Love Limerick. All Rights Reserved.