Photos: Renata Metelicka
Rio and Mardi Gras descended on Mountrath for the town’s 50th anniversary Carnival-themed parade, where the VIP guests were Brazilian Ambassador to Ireland Marcel Biato and his wife Rosalee.
In 1973, the inaugural parade was organised by members of the local Order of Malta, including Tom Doheny, Bob Stanley, Jimmy Conroy and Christy Loughnane.
The 2023 grand marshal Jimmy Conroy, the last surviving committee member of the first parade, travelled in style through the town in an open-top car driven by David Clegg.
It was a wonderful day with live music and entertainment in the Square, the Lynam School of Dancing, Deliverance and Brian and Figs and a spectacular performance by Ciara and Jean from the award-winning Lord of the Dance after the parade.
The Square was filled with activities from bouncy castles to face painting, market stalls and Mexican Street Food with El Feugo, a new business in town offering tasty tacos and other delicious Mexican treats.
See lots more photos from the parades in towns and villages across the county in the next edition of the Laois Nationalist, in shops and online on Tuesday 21 March