Republican News · Thursday 20 January 2000

[An Phoblacht]

GAA stars to help Paddy's Day Carnival

Some of the top names on the Ulster GAA scene have come to the rescue of Belfast's St Patrick's Day Carnival by agreeing to play in a fundraising match for the Carnival.

The Carnival has run into trouble over the past couple of years with Unionist Councillor trying to stop it. This year they succeeded in cancelling funding for the parade, which managed to attract around 80,000 people to the city last year.

The Carnival Committee, though, were undeterred and immediately began organising fundraising events and collections to enable the parade to go ahead. Organisers believe that the football game, which will be between the All-Ireland B champions, Antrim, and an Ulster selection managed by Brian McEniff, will be one of the biggest money spinners for the Carnival.

The event, which is sure to attract huge crowds, will begin in Casement Park at 3pm on Sunday 23 January. It has been confirmed by Brian McEniff that representatives from all nine Ulster counties will be in action.

These should include Peter Canavan (Tyrone), Anthony Tohill (Derry), Jim McGuinness and Brendan Devenny (Donegal), Paul Brewster and Raymond Gallagher (Fermanagh) and Diarmuid Marsden and Oisin McConville (Armagh).

A number of high profile guests have also been invited among them GAA President elect, Sean McCague.

Catríona Ruane, chairperson of the Carnival Committee, said: ``I would urge all patrons to attend this exciting fund raising event and support the St Patrick's Day Carnival. Even if GAA is not your thing, your very presence will support the parade''.

Further details about the match are available from Anthony McGrath at Belfast 313440.

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