CHANNEL SWIM HERO TO SWITCH ON FERMOY LIGHTS
Owen O’Keefe, the teenager who captured the hearts of Fermoy people and, indeed, the whole of Ireland with his brave swim of the English Channel at only 16 years of age will switch on the Christmas lights on Friday next week, November 27.
The ceremony will mark the official opening of the Fermoy Christmas season and it is hoped that the switch on will be even more spectacular than last year despite a tight budget.
“Miracles do happen,” said an ever-optimistic Donal O Lochlainn, chairman of Fermoy Business Association. Owen O’Keefe was delighted with the invitation to kick off the festive season.
“It wasn’t something I wasn’t expecting at all. I am looking forward to it. It should be a great night,” he said. As for the feedback he received after returning from his one-way crossing of the Channel, he enthuses.
“It’s been fantastic. People have been donating to the charity (Irish Cancer Society) and I have raised €14,000 so far.” Mr O Lochlainn, FBA, is delighted to have Owen on board for the evening as, “he is a role model for teenagers.”
This year’s festivities will take place in a more intimate setting on Ashe Quay, as opposed to Patrick Street, in the past few years.
“There will be a band and a group of singers playing Christmas hits, the same children who took part in the Hallowe’en parade. There will also be a very nice surprise for everyone who turns up on the evening. We are also hoping to involve The Grand Hotel in the celebrations,” concluded Mr O Lochlainn.
The festivities will run for about an hour 5.30pm-6.30pm, with the lights being turned on at 6pm.
Thursday 19th November 6:40pm