10,000 multi-coloured plastic balls will cascade from Dungannon’s Castle Hill to the Market Square on Sunday the 18th of December in a unique charity event organised by the town’s Traders’ Association.
The Jingle Ball Run will benefit three charities, St Vincent De Paul, The Vineyard Foodbank Appeal and Zambia Education Development with balls on sale for £2 each and a top prize on offer for the winning ball of £1000 cash and shopping vouchers of £500 and £300 as second and third prizes. The event is sure to generate much excitement as people cheer on the balls, hoping theirs makes it to the winning line outside Dungannon Library.
The event is the brainchild of Brian MacAuley who has seen the footfall in the town centre increase in the past few months with the addition of the nearby Space at the Market Square close to the location of the ball run. In addition to the Jingle Ball Run, which kicks off at 5.30 p.m, there will be a Christmas Market taking place in the newly refurbished shipping containers placed on disused land in the town centre.
Speaking today Brian said the event has a threefold benefit in that it will raise much-needed funds for the charities, allow families to enjoy a fun event and promote pre-Christmas trade in the town.
“I have seen a similar event take place in Cork and I was amazed by the interest and excitement it generated. It really is a spectacle to see 10,000 balls roll through the town and people lining each side of the street willing them on.”
In the build-up to the race on the day, many of Dungannon’s ball sports’ teams and players will be taking part in a number of ball-related challenges including members of the rugby, GAA, soccer, hurling, hockey and golf clubs.
Dungannon Traders Association spokesperson Stephen Mohan is upbeat about the event and its potential to bring people into town the week before Christmas.
“It is exciting to see a race with balls and as Dungannon is built on a hill, the balls will bounce and flow freely through the short circuit.” This is a great event to showcase Dungannon at this magical time of year”.
“We are very grateful for the continuous support given by Mid Ulster Council and their help to make this event possible which gives people the opportunity to shop and socialise in Dungannon”.
Speaking on behalf of St Vincent DePaul, Mandy Cavlin said this fun event will help the charity share out to those in need from all sides of the community, particularly in times of need.
Matt Graham from the Vineyard Food Bank said: “The event will help our Outward Focus Christmas initiative where we help people throughout the year as support is not just for Christmas but for difficult moments in life as well. He added: “Support for the event will help make a big difference to the local community”.
Balls can be purchased at £2 each from participating shops and online from jingleballrun.co.uk
The Jingle Ball Run is supported by Mid Ulster District Council, JPS Construction, ASM Accountants and McKinney Competitions.
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