SLIDESHOW: Limerick is lit up as fireworks greet start of Christmas season

Alan Owens

Reporter:

HUGE crowds turned out on Limerick's O’Connell Street this Sunday evening for the traditional magical unwrapping of the city’s Christmas lights, marking the official start of the festive season.

Characters from PAW Patrol joined Mayor of Limerick Cllr Stephen Keary and Limerick Rose Kayleigh Maher in flicking the switch on the festive display at the Light Up Limerick ceremony, which was greeted with a fireworks display that dazzled the assembled masses.

The crowds were also entertained by street performers and musical guests including soprano Sinéad O’Brien, tenor Derek Moloney, Limerick Gospel Choir and musician Jason Hennessy.

Mayor of the City and County of Limerick Cllr Stephen Keary said: “Christmas is a special time. It is always a magical occasion and shows Limerick at its very best.

“It’s a time for reflection on the origins of Christmas, for renewing old acquaintances and for spending quality time with friends and family. It is also a time to visit and show generosity to those less fortunate.”

Light Up Limerick on Sunday is the starting point of six weeks of celebration that will end with a New Year’s Eve Fireworks Extravaganza and encompass a range of activities taking place in between.

Laura Ryan, Head of Marketing and Communications at Limerick City and County Council said: “There is a real sense of excitement and anticipation about Christmas in Limerick this year with a packed calendar of family fun events, shopping offers, live music and craft fairs on offer.

"A six week campaign showcasing just how special Limerick is at Christmas time begins this week and we’re issuing an open invitation to all to come and enjoy.”