ALL THE FUN OF THE FAIR

The Kerryman (South Kerry Edition) - - NEWS - By SI­MON BROUDER

AS it cel­e­brates its 70th birth­day the King­dom County Fair re­mains as pop­u­lar as ever.

The 70th run­ning of the event took place at Bally­beg­gan Race­course on Sun­day af­ter­noon with thou­sands of peo­ple from all over the county de­scend­ing on the track to en­joy a jam-packed day full of fam­ily en­ter­tain­ment.

The weather cer­tainly favoured Tralee as the his­toric race­course was bathed in warm sun­shine for most of the day.

The good weather no doubt helped draw the crowds with some­where be­tween 5,000 and 6,000 peo­ple vis­it­ing the fair over the course of the day.

Kerry GAA star and Danc­ing With The Stars win­ner Ai­dan O’Ma­hony was on hand to cut the rib­bon and get events un­der­way at 9.30am on Sun­day morn­ing and after that there was a steady stream of peo­ple pass­ing through the gates into Bally­beg­gan right though the day.

Those that came along to en­joy the fes­tiv­i­ties will have had plenty to keep them oc­cu­pied with at­trac­tions rang­ing from dog shows and chil­dren’s games and ac­tiv­i­ties to live­stock shows; show jumping; craft demon­stra­tions; mu­sic; vin­tage ve­hi­cle and ma­chin­ery dis­plays; cook­ery demos; scores of trade stalls and nu­mer­ous demon­stra­tions by var­i­ous emer­gency re­sponse teams and com­mu­nity groups.

A few no­table high­lights among the many at­trac­tions dot­ted around the race­course were a vor­tex tun­nel, which re­sem­bled a giant walk through kalei­do­scope; piglet rac­ing and the chain­saw wood sculp­ture demon­stra­tions by Will Fog­a­rty of Fear na Coillte Chain­saw Sculp­tures.

There re­ally was some­thing for ev­ery­one and judg­ing by the smiles on the faces around the course the lat­est edi­tion of the long-run­ning fair was a big hit with the pub­lic.

The first fair – then called the Kerry in­dus­trial show – took place back in 1948 in three venues in Tralee: the old Theatre Royal (once used as Fab­ric Night Club); the Old In­fir­mary Grounds that be­came Glea­sures Sawmills and in Tralee Town Park.

As the crowds grew there was the need for a larger venue and the fair first moved to Bal­ly­mullen Bar­racks be­fore mov­ing to its cur­rent home in Bally­beg­gan in back in 1982.

Tom McCarthy – who was the win­ner of the Ed­die Hayes Memorial Cup at the King­dom County Fair on Sun­day – with his year­ling. Pre­sent­ing Tom. With the cup are Ed­wina and Helen Hayes.

Sinead McSweeney, Ly­dia Zavad­ska and Liz McSweeney with one of the lambs that was on show at the King­dom County Fair at the week­end.

Off to the dog show with their dog Toby: Shauna,Mary and Olivia Buck­ley (Castle­gre­gory) at the King­dom County Fair

Twins Aideen and Eve­lyn Fla­herty with their par­ents Claire and Conor at the King­dom County Fair at Bally­beg­gan on Sun­day.

Among the large crowd that en­joyed the King­dom County Fair in Tralee on Sun­day were Sue Ann and Ellen O’Brien from Lis­tel­lick

The Quil­ters from Lis­towel – Kevin, Nora, Josh and Ju­lia – at the King­dom County Fair at Bally­beg­gan in Tralee on Sun­day

Lit­tle Jes­sica Cre­gan hav­ing fun at the King­dom County Fair in Bally­beg­gan.

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