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Special St Patrick’s Day party planned

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A SPECIAL St Patrick’s Day party – featuring a French dance troupe – will be held on Saturday to celebrate Irish culture and its links to the Island.

Ireland’s national day will be celebrated all over the world on Saturday

More than 120 French visitors are due to travel to Jersey for the event, which is being organised by the Cannon O’Rafferty School of Irish Dance.

The five-hour St Patrick’s Day celebration will feature Irish song and dance performances as well as a raffle and sweet stall.

Assistant Economic Development Minister Murray Norton, who is opening the event, said: ‘Ireland’s culture is a unique national strength and it is fantastic to see so many Islanders embracing St Patrick’s Day in Jersey like many others will around the globe.

‘The Irish in Jersey play a huge role in the community, organising many cultural events, and I would like to congratulate the Cannon O’Rafferty School of Irish Dance for organising this Irish celebration and attracting so many visitors to Jersey to join the St Patrick’s Day party. This event is a fantastic platform to showcase the culture of Irish dance and music or as they say “craic and ceol” within the Irish community in Jersey.’

Irish dancers have performed in a dance-a-thon at the Co-op Grand Marché and parents of the dancers organised an afternoon tea event at the Town Hall raising over £1,800 for the St Patrick’s Day show.

Katie O’Rafferty, principal of the Cannon O’Rafferty School, said: ‘The Irish dance school has worked so hard to fundraise for this special St Patrick’s Day event and I would firstly like to thank all of the dancers and their families for all of their hard work over the last few months.

‘This year is the first year we have managed to fly in Irish bands from France and Ireland. We have 126 visitors travelling from France, a four-piece ceili band, a dance troupe from Brittany, musicians from France and Ireland, including flautists, and a pianist playing traditional Irish music.

‘It is going to be a fantastic show and everyone is invited to join us to celebrate St Patrick’s Day in Jersey.’

The event is being held at the Radisson Hotel and starts at 3 pm. There is a minimum donation of £2 per adult on the door – children are free.

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