The Longford Samba band taking part in Athlone's festival this year.

AGM of Athlone Croí na hÉireann Festival this week

The AGM of the Athlone Croí na hÉireann Festival is scheduled for this Thursday, September 21 at 8pm in the Bounty.

Chairman of the group John Henson thanked his hardworking voluntary committee for delivering an excellent five-day festival last March which concluded with an amazing parade through the town.

While the weather was really wet on the parade day, the feedback from the public who came out in their thousands to enjoy this festival was so welcoming and positive, he said.

Mr Henson has been instrumental over the years in bringing large numbers of Americans from Providence and other parts of the United States to Athlone for the St Patrick’s weekend festivities. Discussions are now at an advanced stage to bring Americans again to the Athlone festival in 2024.

In extending a warm welcome to all who would have an interest in developing our festival next year to the AGM, John stated that new faces and new ideas are vital for continued success.

"We are now looking for members of the public to come along to our AGM, to get involved in sub-committees, to help with fundraising and to decide on dates for the 2024 festival and parade," he urged.

Treasurer of the group Cllr Frankie Keena thanked all the local businesses and Westmeath County Council for their generous sponsorship which made the festival last March a major success.

"This financial support is very much appreciated as without it there would be no festival and no parade. We were also so grateful to TUS for hosting a number of events," he added.

The Athlone Croí na hÉireann Festival is now well established as a major spring event for the town's calendar year.

"This is important for Athlone as it further strives to host a number of top quality festivals each year that will attract visitors to the town. These festivals apart from providing great enjoyment to the public, they will also provide much needed economic boosts to local businesses," concluded Cllr Keena.