Santa set to light up Ballinagh!

This Sunday sees the Christmas season in Ballinagh launched in style.

An appreciative Father Christmas has kept his jam-packed diary free for the whole day to meet the families and spread cheer in Ballinagh. It’s just as well he’s there all day as the organisers are expecting to cater for around 400 children.

He will be in a fabulously decorated marquee inside Ballinagh Community Centre from 11am to 5pm where he will be only too delighted to meet and chat with local children, and maybe even have a little gift for them.

Coinciding with the arrival of Santa and the lights switch on, the Ballinagh Christmas Market promises to draw hundreds into the town to take in the atmosphere.

Demand for market stalls has been huge with 25 different artists, homecooks and crafters all eager to participate. With a wide range of handmade treats, cakes, decorations, jewellery and artwork, it’s a great opportunity to pick up a few gifts or treat for yourself this festive season.

And of course, there will be refreshments and facepainting for the children.

Laura Brady, assistant at Ballinagh Community Enterpise Association has been creating short videos and promos to showcase some of the crafters, who will attend the market. Amongst the highlights are Mary Smyth’s beautiful handmade children’s knitwear (at very reasonable prices), and some incredible portraits of famous musicians and footballers by Sean Leanord. Laura will also have a stall to promote her ‘Laura’s Pets Portraits’ business - send a photo of your pooch and Laura will do the rest.

The stall which will surely draw a lot of attention is one hosted by some of the Ukrainian families who have been welcomed to the town since they arrived this summer. They will be showcasing some of their traditional cuisine such as halubsti, pampushky, varaniki and of course borsch.

You can get a flavour of the market by finding Ballinagh Community Enterpise Association on Facebook

Santa will bring the festivities to a memorable close by switching on the Christmas lights in the Market Square at 6pm.

Admission for the Santa marquee is €5, and family rates are available.