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Coachford Harvest Festival Report Page

Your Local Festival is here again.

The High Nelly bicycle run is responsible for rolling out the festival this year on Friday when over 30 people are expected to dust off their High Nelly’s to take part in the fun event. Cyclists may dress up in the fashion of the era their bike comes from if they wish. This very enjoyable 6 mile cycle will pass two pubs (or maybe not pass!) on route from Coachford to Peake and on to Dripsey village and returning to Coachford in time to witness the finals of the Aghabullogue GAA 7 a side hurling tournament.

On Saturday the festival kicks off with an underage GAA Blitz in Coachford. The Mini Car Club of Ireland will be displaying their iconic vehicles from the 1950’s right up to the preset day. A Combine Harvester Power Pull competition, Tractor balancing and Mini digger challenges, Pet dog and Harrier show and Farmers Market are some of the attractions at the festival on Saturday afternoon.

The selection of the Festival queen will take place on Saturday night and as this was one of the highlights of last years festival a huge crowd is expected at this event. 17 contestants will compete for the honour of being the queen of Coachford Autumn festival. The selection of the queen is followed by the festival dance where the very versatile ‘Arkadia’ will make sure that everyone spends some time on the dance floor.

Sunday is when the festival reaches its high point when the fourth round of the All Ireland Ferguson Tractor Building takes place at the festival. The local team, Broomhill, are well in contention to win the championship having already secured two firsts in the previous rounds but must win in Coachford to keep themselves in contention for the overall prize in September. Teams from Donegal and Galway will travel to Cork to take on Broomhill. This event promises to be very exciting and all the teams will be trying to beat the current record time of 6 minutes and 15 seconds to build a tractor.

A huge selection of veteran, vintage and classic cars and tractors are expected to attend the festival and if last year is anything to go by then visitors are in for a real treat. Cars from the early 1900s right up to the 1990’s will be on display, many of them in the condition that the left the car showrooms all those years ago.

Sports for the younger children will also take place on Sunday as well as sheaf tossing and Old Time Threshing. The Farmers Market, Mini Digger Challenge, Tractor Balancing and McFadden’s Funfair will continue to provide lots of entertainment throughout the day.

Tadgh Murphy Chairman of the organising committee said, “We are really looking forward to this year’s event. The added attraction of the AllIreland Tractor Building competition will ensure large crowds again. Last years vintage show was unbelievable and the range of cars and tractors impressed all who attended.McFadden’s funfair promises to be bigger and better than last year and we can now only pray for good weather to guarantee another successful weekend.

The Festival organisers donated €3,000 to the AWARE charity from the proceeds of last years festival and they hope to be in a position to donate money to community groups and charity again this year.

“This is very much a community festival and we are very lucky that Aghabullogue GAA have made their excellent facilities in Coachford available to us again this year. This gesture by them allows us to hold the festival right in the heart of the community and ensures that everyone can get involved and enjoy an event that lifts everyone in these tough times.” Said festival secretary, Peter Coughlan.

The message is clear, It’s Coachford festival for fun, excitement and craic.

Full list of events and times are available on the Festivals Facebook page CoachfordAutumnFestival: http://www.facebook.com/#!/CoachfordAutumnFestival

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