December saw St
Patrick’s National School in Glencullen hosting its largest ever Christmas Fair
with a specially built Live Crib creating a real stir in the community.  Built by Vinnie Fitzsimons and filled with
livestock from Philip Maguire and Sinead Fitzsimons, the crib was a buzzing
hive of activity. Following a blessing by Father Gerry, the crib was opened
complete with delightful lambs, a week old calf and a charming Shetland pony.

There was a surprise
visit from the North Pole as Santa Claus, taking a short break from preparing
for Christmas Eve, arrived by pony and trap. Organisers were told that the reindeers
were unable to travel as they were resting for the busy festive season.
Commenting to a local reporter Santa said, “Each
year I ensure that I return to St Patrick’s because everyone makes such an
effort to create a special day and the grotto that I meet the children in,  is one of the very best that I visit in

As always, the wider community surrounding St
Patrick’s NS was very spirited again this year with a wide array of activities
led by school parents and pupils spending several weeks preparing for the
event.  A special thank you is owed to
Principal Kathleen Byrne and  the
extended staff at St Patrick’s NS who allowed their classrooms and the school
hall to be miraculously converted into centres for stalls, games, a cinema, a
café and a Santa’s Grotto.

Special mention should
go to the winner of the first prize of the St Patrick’s NS bumper raffle. Our
very own Independent TD, Shane Ross, was the lucky recipient of the top award.
Deputy Ross very graciously donated the €550 he received back to the school in
return for the money being invested in a specific project.

In total the monies
raised exceeded €10,000 and this will go to supporting year round activities
for children attending the school. A sincere thank you goes to everyone that
attended and helped build or man the stalls. All photographs are supplied by
Anna Lichosik and Elmer Murray.