Alannah is Cavan's First Blue Jean Country Queen

Alannah is Cavan's First Blue Jean Country Queen

Multilingual Data Analyst Alannah is Cavan's First Blue Jean Country Queen

Allanah Winner of the Blue Jean Country Queen
L-R: Sarah Byrne (2nd Prize, Wexford), 2024 Blue Jean Country Queen Alannah Finnegan (Cavan), Gillian Donnellan (3rd Prize, Clare) (Photo: Grace Halton)

Alannah Finnegan, a data analyst who speaks Italian and Portuguese claimed the title 2024 Blue Jean Country Queen this past June Bank Holiday weekend, marking the first time a woman from Cavan has claimed the title.

26-year-old Alannah is a member of the Three Province Macra na Feirme club which was only established in 2020. The second prize went to Wexford's Sarah Byrne, a drama teacher and farmer, who received €500 from Turmec Recycling. Third place went to Gillian Donnellan, a student from Clare who received €300 from Farrelly Tree Care.

Throughout the weekend, Alannah and her 21 fellow Queens took part in a hectic and fun-filled weekend which saw them do everything from taking part in a pub crawl and on-stage interviews, playing fancy dress football, attending a BBQ with main sponsors, Athboy Credit Union and singing Karaoke with the festival organizers and judges.

The festival casually began on Friday 31st May with the Queens taking a trip to Causey Farm where they took part in a team-building exercise that saw them bake bread, dance, and spend time with puppies, horses and alpacas on the farm. This was followed by the festival's official opening in the Darnley Lodge Hotel and a pub crawl that brought the Queens on a tour of the town.

The real hard work began Saturday with private interviews with judges Miss Macra 1990 Catherine Flood, Annika Heinemann, a communications expert working in the arts and culture sector, and returning community representative Maeve Lalor. Alannah and all the other Queens then spent their day at the Athboy Credit Union BBQ and Fun Day before heading to Floods Bar to sing some karaoke. That evening they had the McNamara Feeds Queens' Interviews hosted by iRadio's Conor Woods in front of a crowded Darnley Lodge Hotel before partying the night away with Rythm and Sticks.

Sunday morning, the Queens gathered at the Darnley Lodge Hotel to prepare for a game of Barbenheimer-themed Fancy Dress Football with each Queen dressed as a character from 2023's two biggest movies. The match served as the opening event to an afternoon-long family fun at the Hora Homes Lark in the Park fun day that included live music, children's races, a petting zoo, puppets shows and the Meath Farm Machinery Ltd Toy Tractor Run. After that it was off to the Gala Banquet and once the winners were announced the Queens danced the night away to The Druids.

It's been unbelievable the town has been so welcoming, [the weekend] was so relaxed!” Alannah said reflecting on the festival. She hopes to use her platform to help Cavan Macra na Feirme grow and expand. She also hopes to keep in touch with all the friends she made over the weekend “I've visited all 32 counties in the last year but I'll be visiting all 32 again to see all the lovely Queens I've met this weekend!”