AT the final count last year there were 193 scarecrows in Leap. ‘It was ridiculous,’ said Kathleen Woumans, ‘but this year there’s going to be even more.’
The reason there is going to be even more is because this year the village of Leap are opening up their Hallowe’en scarecrow competition to everyone and anyone who would like to submit an entry.
Kathleen said: ‘Last year’s inaugural Leap Scarecrow Festival was successful because the whole community got involved. It generated so much joy and laughter we decided to invite everybody in West Cork – schools, businesses, artists, community groups and individuals – to make a scarecrow for the competition.’
She said all of the entries must be delivered to Leap Post Office between October 20th and 28th if they are to be registered on time for the judging on October 29th.
Another festival organisers, Rita Ryan, said there will be no entry charge, but there will be lots of events taking place throughout the festival, some of which will be fundraisers because the community is hoping to turn a piece of waste ground into a beautiful picnic area overlooking the estuary.
The first event in the festival programme is a gig that will take place at Connolly’s of Leap on the night of October 21st, followed on Saturday with a Halloween fun and games night at The Leap Inn, and a traditional sing-song at Shanahan’s of Leap on Friday, October 28th.
But the main interest for passersby and visitors will be the public display of scarecrows throughout the village – some of which look suitably terrifying while others are just hilarious.Although the judging will take place on Saturday, October 29th, the results will not be announced until the following night at a Halloween Fancy Dress Party at The Harbour Bar. For kids, there will be a disco earlier that day between the hours of 3pm and 5pm.
The final festival event will take place on November 5th – it will involve the ritualistic burning of the scarecrows at 7pm in the yard of The Leap Inn.