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2011 Washington D.C. Rose Dorothy Henggler

Washington DC  - Dorothy Henggeler smallStatement from Oliver Hurley, General Manager of the Rose of Tralee International Festival, following the untimely death of Dorothy (Dott) Henggler, the 2011 Washington DC Rose

It was with great sadness that we received the news of the death last night of Dott Henggler, the 2011 Washington DC Rose, following a long-illness bravely borne.

We received the sad news from Dorothy’s family this morning:

“Today our beloved Dorothy joined her sister Treasa in Heaven. She was surrounded by her adoring family at home and passed away peacefully. We are so grateful for the 27 years of joy she brought to us. We know that Dorothy impacted every life she touched and will be remembered by many around the world.”

At the time of the 2011 Rose of Tralee International Festival, she worked as a communications coordinator for T Rowe Price having graduated from Virginia Tech with a degree in Communication. Everyone who had the pleasure of meeting and knowing Dott will miss her fun, caring and compassionate personality.

Dott’s mother, Eibhlín, is from Killarney and one of the highlights of Dott’s Rose of Tralee experience was when the Rose Tour Bus arrived at Muckross House where nearly 100 people turned out to welcome her.

She was a big Dr Crokes and Kerry football fan while she was a huge supporter of the Baltimore Ravens American Football team.

We extend our deepest sympathy to Dott’s family and to her fellow Roses and wider Rose of Tralee family, many of whom kept a vigil wherever they were around the world from the moment that she first became ill.

Family-man Dáithí planting the way to Regional Festival 2014

Family-man Dáithí Ó Sé planting the way to Laois for Rose of Tralee Regional Festival 2014

NEW Daddy, Dáithí Ó Sé is enjoying his gardening leave since the arrival of his new son and now he’s getting in gear for the next big event on his schedule - hosting three nights of selections at the Rose of Tralee Regional Festival from 29th May to 1st June.
It was fitting that he should join the 2013 Rose of Tralee, Haley O’Sullivan, in the gardens at the stunning Castle Durrow, Co Laois today to announce details of this year’s family-friendly Regional Festival.

The Rose of Tralee Regional Festival is an established event on the Irish Festivals Calendar and it will feature 60 Roses from Ireland, USA, Canada, Europe, Great Britain, Australia and the Middle East.

In fact, the Middle East region has grown to four Centres over the past two years following the establishment of Abu Dhabi in 2013, this year sees the arrival of a Bahrain and Oman Rose for the first time in Laois.

23 Roses will progress from the Regional Festival in Portlaoise to the International Festival in Tralee in August when the 2014 Rose of Tralee will be selected in the Dome.

The General Manager of the Rose of Tralee International Festival, Oliver Hurley, said: “This is a major event on the tourism calendar for Co Laois as the event attracts visitors from all over the world. The Regional Festival significantly enhances the profile of the Rose of Tralee while generating a boost to the local economy. We know that our wonderful hosts in Laois will again lay on a spectacular welcome to our 61 Roses, their families and friends who will travel to the event at the end of May.”
The highlight for the Roses will be to find out which of them – seven Irish Roses and 16 International Roses - has progressed to the Rose of Tralee International Festival in August.

Everyone who visits Laois this June Bank Holiday will experience a carnival atmosphere throughout the county featuring visits to the Mountmellick Summerfest, Abbeyleix Fleadh, Gordon Bennett Irish Classic Car Run which is open to all vintage veteran and classic cars, motorcycles and commercials registered prior to 1980.

There will also be two-wheel fun when the High Nellie Harriers, fresh from their guest appearance in Dublin’s St Patrick’s Day Parade, join the Roses in stopping traffic in Portlaoise.

The Roses and their families will also visit some well-known Laois landmarks such as Castle Durrow, Emo House & Gardens and a range of entertainment events in the local hostelries.

The Laois County Manager, Peter Carey, who also attended today’s launch said: “It is my pleasure to welcome the Irish and International Roses to Portlaoise for what promises to be a spectacular weekend. To include the Rose of Tralee as part of our county’s portfolio of attractions for the seventh year is of tremendous benefit from an economic, social and cultural perspective. For many of our guests, it will be their first ever visit to Ireland and we are delighted to be the first to extend a ‘Céad Míle Fáilte’ to Laois.”

The Regional Finals were introduced in 2004 to offer more people an opportunity to participate in the Rose of Tralee International Festival. This has been a resounding success as the number of Rose Centres has grown to over 70 and the event is a well-established and prestigious part of the process to finding the next Rose of Tralee.

“We are most grateful to Laois Tourism, Laois County Council, the Portlaoise Heritage Hotel, the Maldron Hotel Portlaoise, Castle Durrow and the entire local business community for their hospitality. The Rose of Tralee, Haley O’Sullivan, will be among the guests of honour taking part in the Vintage Car Rose Parade on Saturday 31st May,” said Oliver Hurley.

The 2014 Rose of Tralee International Festival will take place from Friday 15th to Tuesday 19thAugust.

For further details of this year’s Regional Finals of the Rose of Tralee, visit

Union J to perform at the Rose of Tralee International Festival

UNION J, one of the hottest pop acts in Europe, have confirmed that they will perform live at the Rose of Tralee International Festival on Friday 15th August.

Tickets for the concert will cost only €10 and they will go on sale from and at Byrnesworth, The Square Tralee at 9am on Friday 21st February.

The General Manager of the Rose of Tralee International Festival, Oliver Hurley, said: “There has been great excitement already in anticipation of today’s announcement of the concert details. Our social media network has been a hive of activity since last week when we confirmed that Union J would be performing at this year’s Festival. It is our intention to build on the legacy of the Rose Gathering and strive to make the 2014 Festival more enjoyable than the last. It is a testament to the success of the Festival that we can attract such a high profile act to follow their fellow X Factor stars – JLS and Jedward.”

There will be something for everyone at the Rose of Tralee International Festival with lots of FREE & AFFORDABLE entertainment including - THREE Rose Parades, TWO spectacular Fireworks Displays, the Skyfest Air Show and more live music than ever with details to be announced in the coming weeks.

This is all in addition to the magnificent events in the Dome including – televised Rose Selections on RTÉ, the Fashion Show and the International Rose Ball.

The Union J Concert, featuring guests, will take place on Denny Street from 7pm on Friday 15th August. It will be a fully-enclosed and secure event and access to the event location will be restricted for Health and Safety reasons and is subject to Licence. Details of traffic arrangements and street closures will be announced in due course.

The Festival of Kerry Support Group paid tribute to the Vintners and Business community of Tralee who give close on €100,000 each year for affordable and free street events.

The Chairman of the Festival of Kerry Support Group, Danny Leane, said: “With the support of the local businesses and the Rose of Tralee International Festival, a subsidised ticket for the Union J concert is good value for anyone’s pocket. It will be a three-hour concert that will be headlined by internationally renowned act – Union J.”

Tickets to see Union J and guests will go on sale from and from Byrnesworth, The Square Tralee on Friday 21st February at 9am. The best dressed JCats (Union J fans) in the queue in The Square will win tickets to see Union J on Denny Street on Friday 15th August 2014.

For more details please contact the Rose of Tralee International Festival on 066-7121322 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

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