With a festive atmosphere very much to the fore, the Athlone Christmas Market will be a focal point within the town’s Civic Square with cabins open for shop local trade from today (Thursday, December 15 ) until Sunday, December 18.
Speaking to the Athlone Advertiser this week, Cllr Frankie Keena, welcomed the return of this festive initiative as he encouraged members of the local community to give of their shop local support to the Christmas market.
“The Athlone Christmas Market will be a focal point within the town’s Civic Square this weekend. Again, the attractive timber market cabins secured by the Athlone Festival and Events Project Group two years ago will be provided for use to traders. These cabins create a marvellous festive atmosphere and uniformity which will complement the fantastic range of products that will be on sale by local traders from both the Athlone and wider District areas,” Cllr Keena stated.
Cllr Frankie Keena expressed his gratitude to the members of the voluntary committee who have assisted with the realisation of the Athlone Christmas Market this year, while also complimenting the work of the Athlone Chamber of Commerce in this regard.
“This year, a selection of cabins will stretch from the canopy on Church Street towards the post office, while the remainder will extend into the Civic Square where some small carousels will be available for the enjoyment of the younger population.
“The canopy itself will be reserved for entertainment and to date with the children from St Mary’s National School performing on Friday, the River Street Big Band singing on Sunday from 12pm to 1.30pm and Aidan Higgins playing festive tunes thereafter. There are also some surprises in store for the Saturday,” Cllr Keena added.
The councillor also thanked Westmeath County Council for its generous financial support towards the market and local business, Spectrum Signs for their sponsorship.
“I hope the public will come along and support our local traders and at the same time pick up that Christmas bargain,” Cllr Keena concluded.
Noting the greater demand for stalls at the Christmas Market this year, Mr Gerry McInerney, CEO, Athlone Chamber of Commerce, expressed his “delight” that the cabins are now at capacity for the weekend’s duration.
“We are delighted that the market is fully booked out for the four days and we do hope that people will shop local and give the traders support.
“Some examples of the products which will be on sale range from handmade pieces of art using pebbles, handmade products from Waxy Wonders, Christmas garlands and candles, natural honey, scented candles, skincare cream by DeDanu, wood carvings, handmade jewellery and a wide range of products from the Irish Guide Dogs. There will also be an opportunity to get your Christmas puddings and mince pies, while teas and coffees plus beautiful pizzas and crepes are certain to prove taste tempting.
“We are so fortunate to have so many local traders in the area all producing a fabulous range of gifts to suit all tastes. This market complements the excellent range of shops spread throughout Athlone, so please shop local this Christmas,” Mr McInerney commented.