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Easter traditions continue in new accommodation

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It is a long-standing Ukrainian tradition to tidy up our homes, plant flowers, saw dry tree branches and sweep leaves on the eve of Easter.

Sunday morning, Ukrainians from the Innisfallen Hotel were very active as we decided to clean up the area around the hotel and the path in the park that leads from Fossa to Killarney.

In the old days, women used to paint the house white with white lime to prepare for the holidays.
Therefore, Ukrainians who have private homes or relatives in the villages always gather a week before Easter to work together.

11-year-old Volodymyr Kravchenko from Kharkiv is carefully clearing last year's leaves near the hotel.

"At home we clean every spring at our summer cottage and I really like this kind of work."

Lilia Paseka, who sweeps the rubbish, says she wants to thank both the hotel staff and the local community for the warm welcome in Killarney.

"Now this is our home, and it should be cozy and comfortable," she said.

Neither the wind nor the rain prevented us from working well and happily in the yard. There were so many people willing to help that there were not enough shovels and brooms for everyone.

Olga Tkachenko and her 13-year-old son Ivan actively worked together with all the people. Due to the war in 2014, Olga was forced to leave her home in Donbass and move to Kyiv. Now she is again forced to save her family from the Russian army by coming to Ireland. Olga almost cries, and says she is very grateful to the Irish who warmly sheltered her family. "I want to thank everyone for their work," she added.

Svitlana Malysheva and Olena Okhrimchuk jog in the park every day. They took rubber gloves and large bags with them and removed all the rubbish on the picturesque path leading from Fossa to Killarney.

But a real surprise was prepared by Svetlana. She brought with her from Ukraine the seeds of marigold flowers which are very popular. They have been growing in every Ukrainian yard for centuries and we compose songs about these flowers.

Marigold - plant of the daisy family, typically with yellow, orange, or copper-brown flowers, that is widely cultivated as an ornamental. Imagine, marigolds for Ukrainians are as important a symbol as the Rose of Tralee is to the Irish. Svetlana planted the seeds in a flowerbed near the hotel. In June, everyone will be able to admire the bright yellow and orange flowers near our new home.

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Ireland’s oldest citizen has Killarney connections

Ireland’s oldest woman met with President Michael D. Higgins at Áras an Uachtaráin this week. Máirín Hughes, who turned 109 on May 22 has strong Killarney connections. The previous record […]

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Ireland’s oldest woman met with President Michael D. Higgins at Áras an Uachtaráin this week.

Máirín Hughes, who turned 109 on May 22 has strong Killarney connections.

The previous record was held by 107-year-old Nancy Stewart who died on September 10 2021.

Although born in Belfast, Máirín went to school in the Mercy Convent. Her father was a customs and excise officer and the family moved around a lot eventually coming to Killarney after spells in County Down and Dublin.

Her mother came from the Rathmore area and her father was from Newmarket in County Cork.

She attended the Mercy Convent and has, in previous interviews, recalled growing up on the shores of Lough Lein.

“Neighbours who had three children were given the job of taking me to school,” she said. “They were annoyed because the children were going to school for two or three years but I was put in to the same class as them – my mother had taught me.”

In 2021 she featured in the book ‘Independence Memories: A People’s Portrait of the Early Days of the Irish Nation’, sharing stories of being kept in school in Killarney during an attack on the RIC barracks down the road.

In 1924 she started a degree in science and a diploma in education at University College Cork, before working in the pathology lab in University College Cork’s Department of Medicine for 16 years.

last year she recalled her story on the podcast: ‘Living History – Irish Life and Lore’.

During the broadcast she talked about her parents’ membership of the Gaelic League in 1910; the Spanish Flu in Ireland in 1918; The Black and Tans in Killarney in 1921; the early days of the new Free State; Eucharistic Congress in Dublin in 1932, visiting the Basket Islands in 1929; and working in the UCC medical laboratory from 1932 until 1948.

This week President Michael D. Higgins hosted an afternoon tea event to celebrate the important role that a variety of people have and can play in different communities and Máirín was among the guests of honour.

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Philip is running over 100kms for Cancer charity

Local runner and charity fundraiser Philip Kissane is set for the biggest challenge of his career as he lines up for the Cork City Marathon on Sunday. Phillip has already […]

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Local runner and charity fundraiser Philip Kissane is set for the biggest challenge of his career as he lines up for the Cork City Marathon on Sunday.

Phillip has already completed four half marathons at various locations around Killarney – all in aid of Kerry Cancer Support Group – or the Cancer Bus as it popularly called.

This is the second time that Phillip has run four half marathon and an official race for the charity.

Back in 2021 he finished with 5km Run Killarney event but his finishing race this time around is over eight times the distance at 42kms.

“We are delighted with Philip’s continued fundraising support but also with his awareness raising for the charity,” Breda Dyland, Service Manager Kerry Cancer Support Trust.

“We are getting busier all the time and still get no statutory funding so are dependent on fundraisers like Philip’s to keep us on the road. We have just put our new wheelchair accessible bus on the Cork route so Philip’s funding will be going towards the operation of this vehicle.”

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