Santa's elves put through bootcamp paces and are ready to welcome kids to Bunratty

Santa’s elves have been put their paces at bootcamp and are ready to welcome thousands of children to the Bunratty Santa Experience

Santa’s elves have been put their paces at bootcamp and are ready to welcome thousands of children to the Bunratty Santa Experience

SANTA’S elves have been put through their paces at bootcamp and final preparations are underway for one of the biggest Santa experiences ever in the Mid-West.

All is at the ready at Bunratty Castle and Folk Park and new recruits to the elf team are ready to start welcoming over 23,000 people who will come through the doors once they open for the special experience on Saturday.

The Santa Experience at Bunratty has become a Christmas staple for young people from across the region - but it wouldn’t be possible for Santa to put on without the aid of his very special helpers.

Among the tasks set were to see how many of Mrs Claus’ mince pies they could hand out in a single minute, could they fit through the special Elf hatch, could they bear the warmer climate here, how good were they at decorating, how rosy are their cheeks and how fast could they make toys.

And the good news is, according to an elder elf, they all came through the test with flying colours.

“We were put through our paces for sure. We came down from Lapland but if any of our team thought it was going to be easy, they got a surprise. It’s no holiday but it is a lot of fun and I think we’ll be as busy here in Bunratty as we would have been in Santa’s Kingdom.”

Niall O’Callaghan, managing director, Shannon Heritage, said: “It’s going to be a magical few weeks here, our busiest ever. Santa at Bunratty has a special place in the heart of young people across this region and right across the country.”

Santa will be based in his Grotto, with his elves showing the way, while there will also be a Folk Park story teller, an Exploration Dome and more. See www.shannonheritage.com for more details.