Gavin Duffy will host a panel discussion with local business people
NEWCASTLE West will put its best foot forward this weekend when it showcases the best the town and hinterland can offer in terms of commerce, enterprise and voluntary, community and sporting effort.
It is the first Bank of Ireland Enterprise Town expo to be held in the town and hopes are high that it will boost confidence as well as orders for business people, develop networks and encourage more people to get involved in local organisations.
“The local community has embraced this initiative wholeheartedly, and working together we have organised a very exciting programme of activity. The event will be free to attend and is open to all,” said Michael Noonan, Bank of Ireland branch manager in Newcastle West, adding that some well-known names such as Vincent Browne and Gavin Duffy have lent their support to the initiative which has attracted entries from over 100 exhibitors.
The two-day event kicks off at 6pm this Friday when it will be officially opened by Minister of State for Tourism and Sport, Patrick O’Donovan TD.
This will be followed by Ireland’s favourite Dragon Gavin Duffy who will host a panel discussion with four local business people entitled Newcastle West – Open for Business.
There will also be a short presentation on the town’s newest enterprise, Ortec Inc, as well as live entertainment, a seasonal cookery demonstration, a style showcase and music from young, local musicians.
On Saturday, the expo will continue from mid-day with a special focus on sport and community and with Paralympian Noelle Lenihan cutting the ribbon. Liam Aherne, of Limerick Live 95FM will chair a discussion called “ Feeding Success – the Importance of Diet and Nutrition” which will feature, among others, Billy Lee, Limerick County senior football manager and Pa O’Dwyer, Ireland’s strongest man.
Live music will continue throughout the afternoon with performances by The Courtenay Boys Buskers and Scoil Iosaf and there will also be a chance to see the Desmond College pupils in an extract from their musical Hairspray.
Vincent Browne will be on hand to talk to the pupils of Scoil Mhuire, Broadford who won the national BizFactor competition earlier this year and he will also announce the prizewinners in the schools competition organised in tandem with the expo.
Fun activities are promised including face painting and there will be a Living Crib as well as goodie bags from Mrs Claus with free refreshments also on offer.
The expo takes place both days in Desmond College and there is free admission.
“It is a fantastic opportunity for the community to see the level of enterprise here in Newcastle West,” Mr Noonan said.