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Castlegregory

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Castlegregory Pattern

The old parish church (now in ruins) is situated at Killiney. Near this church was a holy well whose waters were reputed to be capable of curing eye ailments. This well was the centre of rounds and pilgrimages every year on the 15th August. When the new parish church was built in Castlegregory the event was transferred to the village and became known as Castlegregory Pattern.

The air of anticipation before the Pattern was heightened by the coming of the travellers or "maggies" to mark out the sites for their stalls in advance. The evening before the big day the population turned out to watch the line of colourful horse-drawn carts rolling in from "Puck" (Puck Fair in Killorglin). The village was thronged to bursting point on the day itself and the crowd ate, drank, gambled and played various games amid a general air of festivity. The "Pattern Pies" (mutton pies in soup) formed the backbone of the days' refreshments while for lighter fare, there was a choice of ginger bread displayed on trays, homemade bulls-eyes made from brown sugar and honey, and ice cream which was sold at the Pattern for the first time in 1910. A special ice-filled tank was used to transport the valuable cargo of ice cream from Tralee on the train.

with thanks to: www.castlegregorykerry.com

Castlegregory