Blooming good week for Dylan and Sarah-Mai at the Rose of Tralee

By Amy Lewis and Fintan Lambe

Published 27/08/2016 | 00:00

Dylan Walsh is a pharmacist at Fortune's.
Dylan Walsh is a pharmacist at Fortune's.
Wexford rose Sarah-Mai Fitzpatrick has a hug for her dad Pat, who is a member of the Gardai Band, at the Parade of Roses which is part of the Rose of Tralee Festival in Co Kerry.
Wexford's Dylan Walsh (second from left) with some of the Roses and fellow Rose of Tralee escorts having a whale of a time on Ballybunion Beach during the Rose Festival.

Rosslare native Dylan Walsh may be a familiar face in the Wexford drama scene but his recent stint as a Rose of Tralee escort proved to be a role like no other.

The 28-year-old took a break from his job in Fortune's Pharmacy to assist Yorkshire Rose Anne Marie O'Donnell in her bid to be crowned Rose of Tralee 2016. In the weeks before the final, which kicked off last night, Dylan did everything he could to be the perfect gentleman and ensure that she had the best experience possible. Though Anne Marie didn't make it through to the final stage, Dylan was still in the running to win the Escort of the Year award.

At the beginning of the festival, Dylan was also an escort to Philadelphia Rose Brighid Gallagher. In order to 'promote team spirit' and help people to get to know one another, the escorts are switched up before the main event. Brighid is still in the running to win this year's competition.

Educated in St Peter's College, Dylan went on to study Pharmacy in Trinity College and RCSI before he got his current jobs as a pharmacist in Fortune's Pharmacy in 2012 and Rosslare Pharmacy. In the run-up to the Rose of Tralee competition, the pharmacy ran a Facebook competition to win a dinner date with Dylan in The Yard Restaurant. The winner Hazel Bacon said she had a great date with DYlan, who she called 'the perfect gent' who 'made an effort to look his best'.

Outside of work, Dylan is heavily involved in drama and has performed in over 30 shows including The Producers, Beauty and the Beast and The 39 Steps. He has received an AIMS nomination for best actor.

Dylan is also a crew member of Rosslare Lifeboat and a sailing instructor.

Meanwhile, Wexford Rose Sarah-Mai Fitzpatrick was unlucky not to be selected to appear on the televised finals of the Rose of Tralee competition, the second of which will be aired tonight, Tuesday.

Just 32 Roses were selected from the 65 finalists who took part in the qualifying nights in the dome last week. On stage tonight are Roses from Melbourne, Kerry, Texas, Offaly, Philadelphia, Galway, Chicago, Wicklow, Ohio, Longford, North Carolina, London, New Zealand and South Australia. The winner will be announced at around 11 p.m.

Sarah-Mai has had an enjoyable Rose experience so far, going on the annual Rose Tour of Ireland and attending the various festival events such as the parade and the Rose Ball.

Wexford band Cry Before Dawn were among the headliners on the entertainment programme for Rose of Tralee Week.

They played the Square in Tralee on Saturday, drawing a crowd of many hundreds on a wet and very windy night in the Kerry town.

This was Cry Before Dawn's final Irish gig of the year. Expats in London may want to add Saturday, October 22, as a date in their diaries as Cry Before Dawn have landed a gig at Nells Jazz & Blues in the city as part of Fleadh Week.

Wexford People

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