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Billy Doolan set for East Kery Hall of Fame




Billy Doolan will be inducted into the East Kerry Board Hall of Fame at the annual GAA awards night in the Brehon Hotel tonight.

I spoke to the Kilcummin clubman earlier this week. He has served the Kilcummin club for well over 50 years. As an 18-year-old, he was secretary in 1963. “That was my first dealings with the East Kerry Board,” Billy said. “John O’Leary, a fellow clubmate of mine, was chairman of the EKB at that time and he went on to serve as Fianna Fáil TD.”

Billy was a dedicated player for 20 years, winning a County Championship medal with East Kerry in 1965 and an O’Donoghue Cup medal with his club in 1973. That was the last time they won the coveted trophy.

He was most unlucky with injuries and that began in 1966 when he broke his ankle in three places. Later he broke several other bones, which hampered his career. He has served Kilcummin as secretary, chairman, PRO and field development officer. The latter position is one he currently holds.

“When you retire from work you are called on to work for the club and we are at a critical stage in the club’s development at the moment. 2020 should see us finish the project and we will have top facilities for players and members to use and enjoy. I am very happy with the progress.”

He was events controller for the Fitzgerald Stadium from 1998 to 2010. That was an extremely busy time in the stadium.


He is very proud of the fact that Kilcummin won the All-Ireland Intermediate club title in 2019 and Seán Kelly, a fellow clubman and playing colleague, was there to present the cup. “It was a highlight for me to be crowned All-Ireland champions, as it is so hard to win out at national level. Look at Templenoe last weekend. They were firm favourites to make it to the final with a strong nucleus of Kerry players, but they failed to advance.”

Any improvements he would like to see in the GAA?

“At local level, I would like to see the final of the O’Donoghue Cup, a wonderful competition, concluded by September as the EKB did over the years, and not playing the final in December as happened this year.

“Croke Park needs to send more funds down to the ordinary clubs, who are finding it difficult to raise money to keep clubs vibrant. Small rural clubs in particular are finding it hard to get officers and people to take charge of teams.”

He is very encouraged by the increasing involvement of the women in all aspects of the GAA. “The ladies are an integral part of the Kilcummin club in all aspects of it and they do a great job. In 2019 they won two ladies’ county titles.

When I asked the vice-president what his long service in volunteerism meant to him, he was very succinct. “I loved it all and did it willingly for the community. We set out to win many times, but it is the friendships I have made over half a century that I treasure most.”


ABOVE: Billy Doolan (front row, fifth from left) with the Kilcummin team who travelled to the United States in 1974. Front: Michael Doolan (Gneeveguilla), Tom Looney (Dr Crokes), Con Lynch, Billy Doolan, Seán Kelly and Johnny Healy. Back: Johnny Teahan (Buddihans), Monty O'Sullivan, Liam Horan, John O'Sullivan, Seán O'Connor, Dan O'Connor, Johnny Doolan, Dermot Moynihan and Andy O'Grady. Pic: Kilcummin GAA.

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How to boost your immune system with nutrition

By Tara Tangney from Activate Fitness The immune system is precisely that — a system. To function well, it requires stability. While there is no magic bullet for increasing immunity, […]




By Tara Tangney from Activate Fitness

The immune system is precisely that — a system. To function well, it requires stability.

While there is no magic bullet for increasing immunity, there are ways to keep your immune system strong so that you are better prepared to fight off infections and heal quickly.

As long as your immune system is running smoothly, you don’t notice that it’s there, but if it stops working properly – because it’s weak or can’t fight particularly aggressive germs – you get ill.

Without an immune system, we would have no way to fight harmful things that enter our body from the outside or harmful changes that occur inside our body. Here are five ways to ensure you support a good immune system coming into the wintery months:

1. Eat More Vegetables

While all vegetables have health benefits, some pack a more powerful immune-boosting punch than others. Broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, brussels sprouts, kale, and other cruciferous vegetables are rich in fibre, phytochemicals, vitamins, and minerals. Vegetables such as sweet potatoes, carrots, spinach and tomatoes are rich in beta-carotene (vitamin A), which helps regulate the immune system and protect against infections.

2. Eat Balanced Meals

Include all macronutrients in your meals. Protein is particularly important for healing and recovery. Protein sources include leaner sources of meat, chicken, turkey, fish, eggs, milk, beans, soy, nuts and seeds. These foods are also good sources of zinc, a mineral that promotes healthy immune function and aids in wound healing. Healthy fats are also essential to support our immune health. Try to include a variety of monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats in your daily diet. These are found in avocados, fatty fish, olive oil, nuts, and seeds. These foods provide good fats but are also rich in phytonutrients and fat-soluble vitamins. For example, a small handful of nuts such as almonds is a great source of vitamin E. Wild-caught salmon is one of the only foods naturally rich in vitamin D. Fatty fish are also rich in essential fats called omega-3s, which are known for their multiple health benefits.

3. Regular Exercise

Exercise is one of the main aspects that support a healthy lifestyle. Regular exercise promotes cardiovascular health, lowers blood pressure, helps control body weight, and offers protection against a variety of diseases. And just like a healthy diet, exercise can contribute to a healthy immune system, improves blood circulation allowing immune system cells to move through the body more freely and do their job more effectively.

4. Good Quality Sleep

Getting enough sleep has many health benefits. The lack of sleep puts your body into ‘fight or flight’ mode, releasing adrenaline and increased stress hormones into the body. Research shows that in general, adults need at least seven hours of sleep for optimal health and well-being. As we sleep our immune system works to heal and repair the body. A few tips for getting a good night’s sleep include avoiding caffeine in the evenings, turning off your screens (TV, laptop, phones, etc.) well before bedtime and sleeping in a cool, dark room.

5. Manage Your Stress

You may not often think about how stress affects your ability to fight off infection, but your state of mind can have a significant impact on your health. When you are experiencing more stress, your immunity is compromised, which puts you at a higher risk of getting sick. Managing stress may help you fight germs and infections. Stress management techniques include breath work, meditation, yoga, moderate exercise, walking etc. Having a support system of close friends and family can also help us feel connected and stay strong throughout stressful times.

Although there is no magical potion for immunity, you can take these five steps to boost your immune system which is very important as we enter the colder and darker mornings of winter. Don’t underestimate your lifestyle’s impact on your ability to help keep your immune system strong. Good nutrition, quality sleep, and managing stress can all have a significant impact on your health. If you need help with your nutrition, send us an email at and we will be happy to help you!

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Ireland’s newest and toughest cycle will be a thrilling challenge

Ireland’s newest cycling event comes to Kenmare this month with an exciting and challenging course for the experienced cyclist. Already attracting attention within cycling communities around the country, Velo Kenmare […]




Ireland’s newest cycling event comes to Kenmare this month with an exciting and challenging course for the experienced cyclist.

Already attracting attention within cycling communities around the country, Velo Kenmare will tackle some of Kerry’s toughest climbs and highest mountain passes.

Taking place on October 22, Velo Kenmare is an 135km timed loop route starting and finishing in Kenmare. The total climbing distance is 1,650m, and organisers hope to appeal to serious cyclists who are looking for a new and thrilling challenge.

No stranger to cycling events, Velo Kenmare is being managed by Elite Events Management, who also successfully deliver iconic cycling events Wicklow 200, Ride Dingle and the Ring of Beara Cycle.
Cyclists are encouraged to register for Velo Kenmare on the Velo Cycle Ireland website but places are limited for the enjoyment and safety of all participants, and anyone interested is urged to sign up soon as places are filling up.


​​​​The tough enough mountain climbs are over Molls Gap, Ballaghbeama Pass, Ballaghasheen and Coomakista. The route will take in breathtaking scenery Kenmare is famous for, and incorporating some of the most stunning parts of the Wild Atlantic Way and Ring of Kerry. It is hoped visitors to the cycle event will be encouraged to stay for a few days, and will all be given €20 vouchers or ‘Velo Dollars’ to spend in local shops which will be redeemable against goods and services in Kenmare.

Riders will be allotted a time slot to allow for a staggered start, taking them along a fully marshalled route, with medical cover, bike mechanic support, and hot food and entertainment at the finish in Kenmare.

Making its mark, Velo Kenmare participant race packs will come inside a yellow Velo Kenmare water bottle and finishers’ medals are in the shape of a yellow cow bell. Prizes will be awarded for the quickest top three male and top three female finishers, and fastest male and female will be awarded the title of King and Queen of the Kerry Mountains.

Experienced cyclists are encouraged to take on this exciting new challenge, testing themselves and their clubmates for the fastest finish across these four gruelling climbs, through some of the most beautiful landscape in the country for the best welcome back at the finish.


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