Winterval's first Christmas parade is set to kick off in Waterford city this evening.
In what will be first for Waterford, the festive spectacle will kick off at 5:15 pm at the Clock Tower on The Quay. From there it will march up towards Barronstrand Street and John Roberts Square before concluding at the top of Michael Street.
It might still be November, but with the likes of the Gerbola Circus, City of Waterford Brass, the cast of Waterford Panto’s ‘Jack & The Beanstalk’, the new Winterval Mini Express Train, and visitors from The North Pole taking part, it's sure to feel like Christmas!
Rumour also has it that Santa Claus himself might even join in on the action before officially turning on Waterford's Christmas lights.
The magic and entertainment will then burst into action across the evening with the opening of the City Fairground and Winterval on Ice - which will be a welcome return to Winterval.
For those staying around the city that little bit later, the first Christmas Circus show will commence at 6:30 pm on New Street, while the first Winterval Illuminates light show in its new location of Arundel Square will kick off at 7 pm.<
In need of some homegrown food and local gifts? The main stage at the Winterval Food & Craft Market on O'Connell Street will stay open until 10 pm.
Winterval Day By Day Breakdown
November 27: Festivalgoers at Waterford’s Newest Comic Convention will be on offer from 10 am to 6 pm offering a jam-packed day in store in Waterford Tower Hotel, including special guests, lots of vendors and artists, interactive props and a cosplay competition.
December 4: The Blue Lights Parade will arrive at the city with sirens and lights ablaze as they travel from Bilberry at 3 pm and parade down The Quay to The Mall and onto Parnell Street where it will turn left into Johnstown and into the waterside car park where they will remain until 8 pm. As a treat for the Winterval visitors, the emergency service crews will give families a chance to get up close and hop aboard the rescue trucks, bikes, cars, boats, engines and much more. This event is in aid of little Blue Heroes.
December 9: At 7:30 pm on Gladstone Street, Jingle Bells Cycling Event will be on offer and cyclists are encouraged to wrap up into Christmas jumpers, light up your bike with as many lights as you can handle and take to the city for a gentle city centre novelty cycle. This is a short 2km family-friendly cycle route suitable for ages 6+. To register your group please fill out a form on Winterval.ie before 1 pm on Wednesday, December 7. This event is supported by Active Cities.
December 18: At 6 pm the farming community will join forces to illuminate the city with their sparkling tractors and farm machinery with a fun-filled Tractor Parade set to take to the city’s streets. Visitors can peer at a Deere, or aspire to be as classy as a Massey as they enjoy the display of shiny tractors and twinkling lights at 6 pm on the Quayside. This event is being supported by Suir Garages, Waterford.
December 22. The city will be alive with live music on every corner as professional musicians take to the streets to raise funds for Tinteán Housing, a Waterford-based homeless charity. BuskAid is Ireland’s first city-wide busk for charity in aid of the homeless.
For a full list of events, check out Winterval Waterford's website.