Launch of Rooskey Heritage Festival

The inaugural Rooskey Heritage Festival will be held in the village from Friday, July 24, to Sunday, July 26, with an array of different events included.

  The festival was launched last Friday night in Rooskey Community Centre, where a large crowd of residents, community activists and local politicians gathered to lend their support to the event. 

  As Geraldine Moran, the assistant secretary of the organising committee, told the attendance, Rooskey is one of many villages that has been affected very adversely by the recession.

  While it was once a thriving village, she said, the past decade or so has seen a lot of negative developments, such as the closure of a local hotel and factory, and the Dublin-Sligo bypass being developed.

  This festival is a positive initiative, she said, designed to showcase the village to locals and tourists. Numerous water activities, music, heritage, food and craft events will be held over the course of the weekend.

  Local Independent TD Michael Fitzmaurice, speaking at the launch, said that such events were crucial in keeping rural Ireland afloat.

  “We have to try to keep rural Ireland alive,” he said. “If we come together as a community, we can achieve an awful lot.

  “Show off your area. We have a lot to show in rural Ireland for tourism. Smile and be friendly on the weekend. That is very important.”

  The Cathaoirleach of Roscommon County Council, Cllr. Paddy Kilduff, emphasised the positive aspects of Rooskey.

  “This is a very picturesque village,” he said. “You are lucky at the moment that you have a garda station, hairdresser, barber, shops and pubs.

  “Many villages haven’t that. This is a very active village.”