This year the spirit and goodwill of Christmas is coming early to Carrickmacross. It comes in the form of a Christmas Tree Festival to be held in St Finbarr’s Church of Ireland, Maynooth from the 30th November to the 2ndt December.
This will be the first time such an ambitious event has been held in the area and it will involve the whole community. The Festival, which in some ways could be compared to a flower festival seeks to tell the story of Christmas and the story of the local community through the medium of Christmas trees, both real, artificial and completely hand made. Visitors can journey through the Christmas story as well as the story of the local community as told through the medium of Christmas trees.
Each tree will be uniquely made or decorated to tell its part in the Christmas story. One of the most exciting aspects is the way it involves the whole community in finding a new way to tell it’s story.
Not only will the three Church provide trees, local schools, businesses and community organisations will also be taking part, to create something eye catching. Imagine a bookshop that creates a tree made of books or a garage producing a tree made of tyres.
The aim of the Christmas Tree Festival is to create a community celebration, at the same time as raise funds for the Church. Santa’s Grotto and a Nativity scene add to an air of celebration.
The Festival launches on Friday 30th November alongside the switch on of the Carrickmacross lights. Following the official switch on of the town lights Santa will make his way to the church as we open the Festival. He will then make go to his specially made Grotto to greet all the boys and girls.
On Saturday we open from 10am – 6pm and throughout the day there will be refreshments, a cake stall, raffle and the chance to buy a copy of our parish cookery book. Santa will also be in his Grotto throughout the day.
On Sunday we open from 1pm with all the activities continuing right through the day until our closing ‘Carol’s of Praise” Service at 7pm to which everyone from the community is warmly invited.
Rev Colin McConaghie says the Festival is already creating a real buzz in the town; “we are delighted to be working with the Chamber of Commerce to deliver a truly community based Festival. The response from local schools, organisations and businesses has been very positive and we are looking forward to what the trees they will create. We at St Finbarr’s have a mission of being community focused and this Christmas Tree Festival will bring church and community together as well as bringing to life the wonderful gift of Jesus to our world.”
There is no Admission charge but visitors are invited to give a donation. This promises to be a truly unique event in the life of Carrickmacross. Please plan to come along and support this community celebration and experience something special.