The 2012 Westmeath Rose Aisling Baker opened proceedings at the International Rose of Tralee on Monday night when she was first on stage, wowing the crowd with her performance of Elton John's song Your Song.
The Westmeath Rose was a natural on stage, chatting away with compere Dáithí Ó Sé about her ambitions in life, her family, college life and what she has been up to since being selected as a Rose earlier this year.
Dáithí welcomed Aisling to the stage by saying she must have brought half of Westmeath with her and commented that the crowd had some of the most professional banners he had seen.
"I'd say the whole county is here tonight," replied Aisling.
She went on to tell the crowd about what exactly the Roses had been up to since the festival began last week, explaining that they had kicked off the Rose tour in Dublin before travelling to Ballinasloe, Limerick and Tralee, staying in Carlton hotels along the way. Aisling said she hadn't realised there would be a parade until she got to Tralee and said this was brilliant.
She told the crowd she had just completed college in Limerick and said: "It's a fantastic city, there's a great student life. I was born in Limerick and lived there for five years."
Now that she has completed college Aisling told Dáithí that the plan is to go to Dublin without a job and hopefully get one when she gets there.
Aisling's supporters at the Dome included her mum Michelle, dad Noel, siblings Seán, Aoife and Eimear, her boyfriend Mark and many friends, including some from Mary Immaculate College in Limerick, who cheered when the college and the city were mentioned.
Telling Dáithí that her mum is 'a divil to talk', Aisling proceeded to impersonate her mother on stage, who she said even talks while she inhales!
When Dáithí asked if boyfriend Mark had pursued or stalked Aisling, she replied: "There's a fine line between the two!"
Speaking about what she has been doing since becoming Westmeath Rose, Aisling explained that for the last few months she has been working with Mental Health Ireland and going to schools to speak to students about mental health. She said that is important and is good to start out in primary schools and tell students that it's okay to have different feelings and to give them an outlet to talk about them.
Dáithí gave our Westmeath Rose a bit of a slagging about being starstruck when she met Paidí Ó Sé but she responded that he had done great things for the Westmeath team.
Aisling concluded her time on stage by singing Your Song, during which her mother looked emotional.
Before she left the stage the 21-year-old blew a kiss to her supporters in the crowd and thanked Dáithí Ó Sé.
The results of the Rose of Tralee were announced last night after the Westmeath Examiner went to print.