VIDEO: Joy in Limerick as Christmas lights go on

Nick Rabbitts


Nick Rabbitts

THERE was joy and delight among the 12,000-strong crowd gathered for the turning on of Limerick’s Christmas lights at the weekend.

Families jostled for position in Bedford Row to see elves falling from the sky, and a special letter to Limerick people from the Giant Granny, who visited in September.

It was the largest turnout for the turning on of Christmas lights in recent years, and judging by the reaction of the crowd, they were suitably impressed.

Christy McNamara travelled from St Mary’s Park with his grandson Kaiden, who will be one by Christmas.

“It was an excellent day, a really good day for the kids,” he told the Limerick Leader.

Rhebogue’s Karen Cross enjoyed the festivities with her son Shane, 6, and daughter Emma, 8.

“It was great when the little elves turned on the lights. They are really cool,” enthused Emma.

She is hoping Santa Claus will bring her a new bike on Christmas Day.

For her brother Shane, a hurley will be the order of the day on December 25.

Lorraine Cronin, Ballynanty, and her son Dylan were also awestruck by the performance.

“I enjoyed seeing the fairies come down from the sky. They were really cool,” said Dylan.

And it looks like Santa will be busy bringing bicycles to the city this Christmas - for the youngster is also expecting a present of the two-wheeled variety.

Alannah Robertson, 3, from Raheen, is hoping for a pram for her baby sister.

Her father, Billy, said: “It was great to see everything following on from the Granny’s visit here, and to have so many people around is great. The lights are fabulous. It is lighting up the whole place, and I am just looking forward to the holiday now!”

Catriona Ryan, 10, from Shannon Banks added: “It was magic. I loved the elves. It was so exciting and they even turned on the lights.”

The turning-on of the lights marked the start of Christmas in the city, and a number of special initiatives have been arranged for the festive season.

These include the Taste of Christmas festival, where eateries will develop their own seasonal treats around the city.

Elves from the North Pole have set up camps in Limerick in the lead up to Christmas, and will be moving into a workshop helping children and adults prepare for Christmas.

More of Santa’s elves will be setting up Christmas carol-oke shops, welcoming visitors to sing their favourite Christmas carol.

And the former Ferguson’s pharmacy shop is to serve as the North Pole Post Office. Members of the public will be asked to help the elves arrange safe delivery of all letters to Santa.

For full details see {the Christmas in Limerick website||click here}.