Thousands are expected to converge on the city’s quays on Saturday evening to enjoy the National Lottery’s Skyfest, a spectacular fireworks display choreographed to music.

This is only the second time the pyro extravaganza will be held outside of Dublin – last year it was attended by an estimated crowd of 40,000 in Cashel, Co Tipperary.

The evening’s entertainment kicks off with a live gig by trad legends Kila and local boys Torann on a stage outside the Tower Hotel at 6.30pm, while a funfair to be erected in the carpark adjacent to bridge is sure to keep younger members of the family happy. The massive shoot will kick off just after 7.30pm and will feature up to 2.69 tonnes of fireworks with over 4,000 shoots, all set to a soundtrack curated by Mark McCabe. Viewing is from the south (city) side of the river but don’t worry if you don’t make it in to the quays – the show will be broadast live on RTE1, followed by a special National Lottery lotto draw live from the quays.

The public are advised that a number of roads will be closed on Saturday night. The Dock Road in Ferrybank, from the junction with Rockshire Road to the roundabout at Plunkett Station, will be closed to both pedestrians and traffic during the fireworks shoot (7.25pm to 8.05pm. Traffic diversions will be in place.

The Mall and the Quays, from the junction with Bridge Street to the junction of The Mall and Lombard Street (to include Adelphi Quay) will be closed to traffic from 6pm to 9.30pm, again with traffic diversions in place. All the smaller streets coming off The Quay will also be closed to traffic. All quayside car parks will be closed to the public from 10pm on Friday to 10pm on Saturday.

Meanwhile the city’s annual St Patrick’s Day parade kicks off at 1pm on Tuesday, with the Quay closed to traffic from 10am to 2pm. Val Doonican will be the Grand Marshall on Tuesday and this year’s theme is “Capital of Colour”. More than 70 entries will take the traditional route from Meagher’s Quay along the Quay and The Mall to Colbeck Street. Four community entries have teamed up with city business to take part in this year’s event. TEVA will sponsor the Ferrybank Community Development Group, Genzyme have sponsored the Sacred Heart Community Action Group, Waterford City Enterprise Board will sponsor the Inner City entry led by Waterford Youth Arts and Tycor Environmental Air have teamed up with the North West suburbs entry led by Children’s Group Link.