Updated: 08/07/13 : 07:18:35
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Sligo County Agricultural Show 2013 Show launched in Riverstown

The team of volunteers that create the entertaining family friendly farming event, held in Riverstown each year on the third Saturday of July, launched the 2013 Show on Friday 5th July in the village Teach Ceoil.  Lots of supporters came together for the launch of this year’s Show which takes place in Riverstown Community Park on Saturday 20th July.

Chairperson Michael Harte thanked the crowd for coming along and both he and Committee member Imelda Ryan-Jones congratulated all the many members of the community who work hard all year preparing for the annual County Show.  The National Macra na Feirme President, Sligo man Kieran O’Dowd, also attended and spoke at the launch.  The All Ireland Semi-Finals of the Farm Skills Competition will take place in Riverstown’s Show again this year.  “Of all the semi finals taking place nationally the Sligo County Agricultural Show was commended last year for their facilitation skills and we very much look forward to our return this year” said Kieran.

Together all the dedicated team of volunteers have ensured there are lots of Free activities for families at this year’s Show, to further complement the thrill of getting up close to an amazing range of glorious creatures, who will delight all visitors - adults and children alike.

There are plenty of creative Classes to enter too, including Home Baking Classes which includes a new innovative Class for the first time this year ‘Best Baking by a Boy’, Vegetable Growing Classes and Environmental Awareness Classes which promote Less Litter on Rural Roads, as well as raise awareness of the often unseen issue of Rubbish in Rivers. 

There are Craft Classes for adults as well as children and the Committee are delighted to announce that Tighes Toymaster of Ballymote have sponsored Free entry to all the Children’s Craft Classes. As the Committee strive towards giving the best value for money to families in particular, there will be Free face painting, free storytelling, free story books for families, free family pet nail clipping by Hot Dogz, free entry to the Road Safety Authority Shuttle Bus and Rollover (this vehicle turns 360 degrees, whilst you sit inside and feel the real power of the seat belt) for over 16’s and free soft archery – thanks to Gerry Conlon of Lough Bo Shooting Centre who is one of the new sponsors of this year’s Show. 

“In fact we are delighted to say we have a number of new sponsors on board for the first time in 2013. Basically to ensure our Show is sustainable, so that we can make it pay for itself without getting into debt, (a tricky enough thing to do these days) we have reached out further into the community to get more help with sponsorship for various Classes.  Everyone we spoke to has been exceptionally supportive, and it really does make us feel privileged to live in such a positive community.” said Imelda on the night.  

Gemma of Hot Head Hair Salon has sponsored Little Master Riverstown, Lough Bo Boarding Kennels and Cattery have sponsored the Dog and Cat Section, and Jo herself will be judging a new Class included this year – Best local dog in the Parish of Riverstown.  Seamus & Patricia Cawley have sponsored a Cattle Class, J Cawley & Sons have sponsored one of the Horse Classes and Matt Jones Woodturner has sponsored a Sheep classes.

Matt will also be demonstrating his woodturning again at this year’s Show, and will have a free raffle for one of his bowls on the day.  In 2012 Aileen Devlin of Ballymote won a Matt Jones Bowl in Spalted Beech following her day out at the Sligo County Agricultural Show, so there will be another lucky winner this year.

Men's Shed

Ballymote Farmers Market and the Men’s Shed from Geevagh will also be selling their wares on the day, as well as Creative Cheese Making Demonstration and kits for sale, so bargains galore on the day.  Elderly members of the community will be able to learn more about and see how the Senior Alert Monitors work, which will benefit all the Community Alert Groups in the County.
Next year it will be twenty years since Paddy Kenny had the wisdom to get the Riverstown Community involved, when he and the Riverstown Creamery Committee ensured the survival of the Sligo County Show – which had to close its gates in Sligo Town.

They had the vision to relocate it to green fields of Riverstown and the Committee are planning an extra special Show for its 20th anniversary.  Sligo County Agricultural Show is always scheduled for the third Saturday in July, so its a definite date for the diary.  Come along for a fun and memorable day out for the whole family on 20th July and check out www.sligocountyagrishow.com for more details and entry forms.

Photo: At the Launch of the Sligo County Agricultural Shows'  brochure are Macra Na Feirme President  Kiernan O' Dowd,  Rose O' Donnell -  Co. Treasurer,  Michael Kenny - Co. Chairman with  Cllrs. Gerrard Mullaney,  Martin Baker,  Tomas Collery with Committee members  Geraldine Coleman,  David Barry,  Frank Meehan,  Tom Bagnall,  J.P. Higgins,  Michael Harte - Chairman,   Garoid O' Connor,  Padraig Jinks,  John Lyons,  John Cawley  and Imelda Ryan - Jones.
   Photo: Peter Mc Parland