The National Ploughing Championships returned with a bang in Laois this morning as close to 100,000 people thronged to the venue which was blessed with sunshine.
After a three year Covid-19 induced break, the appetite for the event was very much in evidence as the crowds thronged to the Raheniska venue.
With the event incorporating the World Ploughing Championships also this year, after a three-year hiatus, there was very much an air of its good to be back!
And it was certainly very much a case of normal service resumed as the usual suspects attracted a large attendance. Normal service was resumed as it was a case of queues and standing room only at the O'Neill's tent.
Everything from hurleys to energy efficient wood-pellet stoves were all on show. With rising energy costs and a fully-blown cost-of-living crisis, there was much interest in all items and inventions which can help people deal with rising fuel and energy costs.
From horticulture to entertainment, there is something for everyone. Whether you wanted to buy GAA Cúl Heroes trading cards, GAA jerseys or any kind of farming attire, there is plenty to spend your money on.
There was plenty of entertainment on offer too, with Ferbane's Oliva Douglas kicking off the entertainment schedule at 11 am as crowds broke into impromptu dancing as the sun shone down on events.
An afternoon of walking, horticulture demonstrations and arcade amusements beckon for an expected crowd of close to 100,000 people at the very first day. With the weather expected to be very good for the first few days, it's likely that record crowds will descend on the Laois venue.
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