Portlaoise is set to become a hive of activity this St Patrick’s weekend.
Family-fun activities will take over the town on Saturday and Sunday, while on Sunday the crowds will be treated to both a magnificent parade and the ‘Street of Portlaoise’ 5k race.
The annual popular St Patrick’s Day ‘Streets of Portlaoise 5k’ road hasover €3,000 in prize money and is hosted by Portlaoise AC.
Like last year, this race is the start of the exciting “KIA Series” of races supported by Pop up Races.
This flat course has produced some very good racing last year with Hiko Tonosa, DSD, setting the men’s course record at 14:41 while Kerry O’Flaherty, Newcastle and District, holding the ladies record at 16:11.
Last year there was good competition for the top prizes with 27 athletes breaking the 17 min barrier.
Hiko Tonosa will be back to defend his title but with John Travers and Martin Kinneelly, to name just a few of the entries it should be a very competitive race up front.
Local interest in this race will include Cyril Cuddy, James Hamm, Paul Cuddy, Ballyfin AC’s Colm Maher as well as Colm Burke and John Fenton of St Abbans.
In the senior women’s race Mary Mulhare will be joined by Maira McCambridge and Sinead O’Connor battling it out for top honours.
The junior men’s race with see Cian McDonald – of Irelands Fittest Family fame, out to defend his junior title while the junior women is wide open.
With a total of over €3,000 in prize money (for junior, senior and master’s categories) along with a bonus for a senior course record, this race will surely attract a large field.
The programme starts with some juvenile fun runs at 10 o’clock with the main race starting at 11 o’clock.
Some Key Points to remember
- Race starts at 11am sharp on Mountrath Road.
- Register online here or on the day in the Midlands Park Hotel. (Registration is nearly full so hurry)
- Registration closes at 10.30am sharp as start line is 1km walk
- Three Kids fun runs – U-7, 10 and 12. Registration 9am-9.45am in Midland Park Hotel. First fun run starts at 10am sharp.
- Refreshments after the 5K race in the Midlands Park Hotel.
- Prize Giving takes place at 12.20 in Midlands Park Hotel.
- Traffic restrictions will take place from 11am–12pm on the
following roads: Mountrath Road, Ridge Road, Mountmellick
Road, Harpers Lane. Thank you for your co-operation.
Meanwhile, Laois S.P.C.A. and the Hynds Square Business Committee are spreading joy to all over the weekend.
On Saturday, they have organised a lineup in Hynd’s Square which includes; a visit from Raven Haven Aviaries, Alfie’s Pooch Parlour, face painting and live music including that of local musician Joe S, who played the Electric Picnic.
On Sunday there will be have free nail painting from Iris for children under twelve, festive face painting, balloons and an ice cream van in the square for after the parade.
Hynds Square Business Committee member Lysagh Redmond said: “We as a committee decided to join in on spreading the community spirit this year and are hosting family fun activities throughout the weekend in conjunction with other events throughout the town.
“We are trying to promote the best our town has to offer and are looking forward to a great weekend of family fun.”