Cllr Gerald Mitchell, deputy mayor; Susan O’Sullivan, Limerick Rose entrant, Valerie Greene and John O’Dea, Kilteely-Dromkeen festival committee Picture: Mike O’Riordan
TWENTY-THREE young ladies will vie for the title of 2016 Limerick Rose at the selection night on Saturday in the Radisson Blu Hotel.
Every one would do the county proud as for the first time since 2007 the Limerick Rose is guaranteed to get to the famous Dome in Tralee for the final.
They all have the support of family, friends and their sponsors. The majority are sponsored by businesses, while some have got the backing of charities and clubs.
But in a first for the Kilteely-Dromkeen festival they are getting behind Susan O’Sullivan, from Old Pallas, who won their inaugural rose competition two years ago.
Denis Griffin, co-ordinator of the Limerick Rose Centre, said it is great to see local communities and businesses getting behind their local representatives.
“The winner going to Tralee is a big step. It is something that I gave a commitment to when I started in 2012 that I would do my best that every girl that enters the Limerick Rose selection would have a good time no matter how far she gets.
“We give that commitment again this year. She is going down to Tralee, which is the added bonus obviously, to take part in all the events down there and see what will happen on live TV afterwards,” said Denis.
Tom Jones, chairperson of the annual Kilteely-Dromkeen festival, said their rose competition two years ago was about local communities joining together.
”It was a new idea for us. We are always trying to reinvent ourselves. Our rose festival got a great response and Susan was excellent in the competition. We always said that if she decided to go we would sponsor her and here we are looking forward to Saturday night,” said Tom.
Their festival runs from July 15 to 18. Saturday’s selection event begins at 7.30pm and tickets can be booked from 087 1474100.