Dr. Norah Patten ‘blasts off’ as parade grand marshal

Posted in Connect on February 27, 2019.

MAYO native Dr. Norah Patten, who is in the running to be Ireland’s first astronaut, has been unveiled as the grand marshal for Limerick’s St. Patrick’s Day parade.

The theme of this year’s parade is One Giant Leap, marking the 50th anniversary of Neil Armstrong’s landing on the moon. It also reflects the massive and dynamic revitalisation of Limerick over the past number of years.

Details of the Limerick St. Patrick’s Festival were announced today(Tuesday), including the colourful and energetic parade, Ireland’s only international band championship, featuring more than 1,300 musicians, a dazzling fireworks display, a 40 foot panoramic wheel and the Museum of the Moon.

Said Dr. Patten: “I am deeply moved, what an incredible honour. When I was 19, I moved from my home in Mayo to a new home in Limerick when I began my studies at the University of Limerick. I’ve spent most of my adult life here and I feel a deep sense of gratitude to the people of Limerick for the welcome and inclusion I have experienced over the years.

It’s a great honour to accept the invitation to be grand marshal at this year’s parade. It is so wonderful to hear that my ambition and progress to become Ireland’s first person in space is inspiring others to reach for the stars and it is very exciting to hear the theme this year is ‘One Giant Leap’ in memory of the moon landing.”

The Connaught Telegraph, 26th February 2019

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