Volume 12 Week 5

Friday, Feb. 23


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Orléans Ward
Bob Monette

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Tim Tierney






(Posted 12:30 p.m., Aug. 12)
Navan Fair comes to an end with Irish flair and more rain
By Fred Sherwin
Orléans Online

The lead guitarist for Dallas Smith plays in the rain as members of the audience look on during the final day of the Navan Fair on Sunday. Fred Sherwin/Photo

The Navan Fair came to a raucous end on Sunday as a crowd of about 300 people refused to let a heavy shower dampen their spirits as they enjoyed the country strains of Dallas Smith while dancing in a small lake in front of the stage.

The wet conditions were a fitting end to a this year's Fair which was plagued with on again, off again showers from Day 1.

The rain hindered attendance on pay-one-price Friday, which is traditionally the Fair's second busiest day, but it let up long enough for the demolition derby to go off with nary a drop.

The rain also stayed away for the better part of the day on Saturday, which was good news for everyone involved in the parade, but the mere threat of the stuff kept the crowds down.

Sunday was a different story. Showers delayed a special performance by members of the navan2navan delegation visiting from Navan, Ireland. When they eventually took the stage they entertained the audience with singing, dancing and traditional storytelling.

The heavy rain failed to dampen the spiriits of these Navan Fair revellers who jumped on their picnic table to get better view of country artist Dallas Smith. Fred Sherwin/Photo

Forty-one Navan, Ireland residents have made the journey to Navan, Ontario with many of them, like co-organizer Paddy Pyrle, choosing to stay with local residents.

Pyrle said the performance was the group's way of saying thank you to their hosts.

"Everyone has been so friendly. They've welcomed us with open arms and they've opened their homes to us. I just can't say enough about how enjoyable the whole experience has been. It's been just marvelous," says Pyrle.

The Irish guests acted out the legend of Finn McCool and the Salmon of Knowledge, in which the legendary Irish hunter is bestowed with a wealth of knowledge after eating the silver fish while under the tutelage of a wise hermit named Finegas.

After the performance, the band Silver Creek took the stage followed by Dallas Smith. The group was just over halfway through their set when the skies opened up, forcing most of the audience to take refuge under one of the domes. Unbowed by the storm, the band kept playing in the driving rain much to the delight of a sizable group of diehard country music fans.

Despite the rainy conditions, a good time was had by all in the true showing of Navan spirit.

(This story was made possible thanks to their generous support of our local business partners.)

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Posted Jan. 12

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