Phoenix has some sweet treats for local grandparents

Five lucky children from across Northern Ireland are treating their grandparents to a Grand Day Out, as their nominations earn them a winning place in the Phoenix Natural Gas Sweet Treat competition at the MAC.

five children with their grandparents photographed in the MAC theatre.

Phoenix Natural Gas called for children who had recently visited the MAC to nominate someone who has made their life a little sweeter at the Phoenix Sweetie Shop. Over 1000 submissions were received; some funny, some imaginative and some especially heartfelt. Having reviewed all the entries, it became apparent that the grandparents of Northern Ireland are helping to sweeten up the lives of local children.

The little sweethearts who nominated their grandparents included Miriam Gaston (3) from South Belfast, Sophie Holmes (5 and a half) from Four Winds, Orlaith Culshaw (7) from West Belfast, Heidi Burns (6) from East Belfast and Rowan Doherty (6) from Newtownabbey.


Cathy Magovern, Marketing & Events Manager at Phoenix Natural Gas said: “We were overwhelmed by the number of children who praised their grandparents for making their lives sweeter at our Sweetie Shop at the MAC. It is evident through the nominations that children in Northern Ireland truly value the warmth and love from their grandparents. We are delighted to offer the children an opportunity to warm the hearts of their grandparents by treating them to a sweet day out.

“Children visiting the MAC over the festive period had the opportunity to write about someone who had made their lives a little bit sweeter; reading about all the lovely people who have impacted the lives of these children, we heard about delightful dinner ladies, playful pets and super siblings – but the people who just kept popping up were grandparents.

“Winter can be a difficult time for the elderly community in Northern Ireland, with dark and cold nights, so we wanted to arrange a post-Winter treat to brighten their January and give them a Grand Day Out to enjoy with their grandchildren.”


Claire Murray, Marketing Manager at the MAC adds: “We are delighted with the positive response to the Phoenix Sweetie Shop competition and are inspired by the generosity of spirit shown by our young theatre-goers. At the MAC we pride ourselves on being a place for the whole family and it’s clear that grandparents play a central role in introducing children to the fun of arts and culture.”