Earhart festival draws to a close in Galliagh and Shantallow

A section of the large crowd at the Earhart Festival on Sunday at Fergleen Park as local young dancers took to the stage. DER2914MC172
A section of the large crowd at the Earhart Festival on Sunday at Fergleen Park as local young dancers took to the stage. DER2914MC172
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The organiser of the Earhart Festival has said that this year’s week long event was the most successful ever for residents in Galliagh and Shantallow.

Festival organisers, local residents, staff from the Housing Executive and volunteers were on hand from 7:30pm yesterday morning to help in a clean-up at Fergleen Park, where hundreds of local people enjoyed the closing of the festival on Sunday night. Many locals welcomed the return of the festival to the heart of Galliagh.

“In terms of our ‘Speaking to the World’ cultural carnival, it was the biggest since we began,” said organiser Ollie Green.

“With over 600 people taking part, we had representatives from every community in the city and contributions from the Chinese, Filipino, Cuban, Spanish and Italian communities.

“We also had a variety of local organisations taking part and the day had a real cross community spirit to it. “The carnival itself sent out a very powerful message about the multi cultural approach to community events.”

Commenting on the festival finale which saw the Henry Girls and Brush Shiels take to the stage to top off last week’s events, Mr. Green said: “For us, the entire festival was about keeping things family friendly and holding an inclusive celebration and we feel we succeeded in doing this. We had a brilliant turnout for everything, particularly the carnival and the people of Galliagh really took the event to their hearts.”

Early yesterday morning, Mr. Green joined others in the community who took part in a ‘care in the community’ event by cleaning up the Fergleen Park area where events had taken place.

“This festival wouldn’t have been possible without the help and support from people in the community and we had a responsibility to leave the place as we found it,” he said.