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Christmas Fayre set to be ‘bigger and better’

Pictured at the recent meeting for the Christmas Fayre are Catherine Collins, Anoop Guram, Wendy McGlinchey, Teresa Stewart, Perpetua Foley, David McGarrigle, Ursula Gallagher, Gerard McFadden and Gina Devine. DR71

A DOG Christmas jumper competition is just one of the many plans being put in place as part of Strabane’s Yuletide festival this advent.

Taking place on Sunday, December 3 in the town centre, this is the second Christmas Fayre to be held in Strabane, following the great success of last year’s inaugural event.

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Featuring stalls and crafts, face-painting and music, the festive fiesta will also include a Christmas movie at the Alley and a Christmas story-telling bus which will circulate around the town.

“At our debrief last year we decided we would start early so we’ve been meeting since April,” Teresa Stewart from the planning committee explained at a meeting at council offices last week.

“Last year was a big success and we also carried out evaluations on the night, to hear what people wanted to see at any future event. For example, that’s the reason we’re having it this year on a Sunday, so that we’re not clashing with other things and plus the kids get to experience the whole day.”

She added, “The funding has increased from last year so what we’re hoping is, that we’ll do so well this year, we could make it a weekend next year.”

Funded to a tune of £9,500 (council is putting in £7,000 whilst the Strabane BID is adding £2,500 to the pot), the event organisers hopes to build on the spectacular success of last year’s fayre. To that end, a unique partnership is behind this year’s festival. Last Thursday’s meeting was attended by officials from Strabane Chamber of Commerce, Derry City and Strabane District Council, Strabane BID and members of the community and voluntary sector.

Strabane musician and composer, David Oliver is one of those helping organise this year’s music.

He remarked, “There might be two and possibly three stages this year, with all local schools, choirs and artists.

“A lot of the groups and organisations are doing it for cost price and really, for the good of the town and to support the town.

“Some of the bands already signed up are 1975, The Governors, Darren Doherty and the Heathen Choir and Jazz Gazzette and there are others that just have to confirm.”

This year’s bigger and better Strabane Christmas Fayre will take place on Sunday December 3 between 1pm and 6pm.

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