I’M STILL recovering after this year’s epic Rose of Tralee! What a thoroughly enjoyable festival it was.
The two nights of live television sent the RTE viewership figures through the roof and host Daithi O’ Se couldn’t have done a better job.
I was completely thrilled for the Philadelphia Rose, Maria Walsh, who was crowned the 2014 Rose of Tralee. Maria was a very deserving winner - every time I met her she was the same - natural and lovely. I personally want to congratulate all the Rose contestants and in particular the Abu Dhabi Rose, Patrice McGillicuddy, who I had the pleasure of judging in Abu Dhabi last February. She was extremely popular and her cup song went down a treat with the audience in the Dome.
On another note, it was great fun catching up with many of the former Roses - all looking fab as you can see from the picture, and of course our own Muirne Hurley looked stunning in a beautiful black evening dress. I will always remember the moment her father, Cormac Hurley, who is known to us all in Limerick, sang the Rose of Tralee live on television. That’s the kind of magic that happens at the Rose of Tralee every year and that is why I love it so much.