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Finish Line Fantasy cycle launched by charity

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With the actual fundraising cycle event not taking place this year, organisers of The Ring of Kerry Charity Cycle have launched a 'FinishLineFantasy' challenge in an effort to encourage cyclists to recreate their own finish tomorrow (Saturday), marking the original date of the 2020 cycle.

The idea is to encourage participants to get some practice in before what promises to be the cycle event of the year on Saturday, July 3, 2021.

And they have not one, but two prizes for the winners of the challenge, including a brand-new road bike sponsored by O’Sullivan Cycles, Killarney to the value of €1,000 as well as entry for the 2021 event, a jersey and a neck buff for The Ring of Kerry Charity Cycle 2021.

To enter, participants are asked to take a photo of their recreated ‘finish line’ with family or friends, share it tomorrow (Saturday) on their social media channels, and tag the Ring of Kerry Charity Cycle with the hashtag #FinishLineFantasy.

They are also encouraging creativity and humorous photos while of course adhering to social distancing guidelines. Winners will be announced Tuesday, July 7.

The volunteer-led charity cycle has raised over €17 million for more than 160 charities since it began 37 years ago, and in more recent years, over €1 million per annum. Unfortunately, due to the cancellation of this year’s event, they are unable to fundraise in the same capacity for their carefully chosen charities. This has had a knock-on effect for charities including St Francis Special School and the Kerry branch of Down Syndrome Ireland.

“As we all re-emerge back into the ‘new normal’ and the additional stress that this may bring, we can only imagine what it feels like for children with extra needs and with that, it is even more essential now to have our own school bus," Fiona Carroll, Special Needs Assistant at St Francis Special School, aiming to raise funds for a dedicated school bus for the children said. "The Ring Of Kerry Charity Cycle and the ‘Cycle For Us We Need A Bus' campaign have never meant more to us than they do now.”

Chairperson of the Ring of Kerry Charity Cycle Committee, Bridget McGuire, said that they are extremely disappointed that they couldn’t hold this year’s event due to COVID-19.

"We would like to thank once again those who registered this year, all of our amazing volunteers and our charities for their ongoing support.
We really hope that people get on board with our #FinishLineFantasy Challenge, while of course, keeping it local and in small groups adhering to social distancing, as it’s a great way to spend time with family and friends, go for a cycle, have a bit of fun and who knows, win some impressive prizes.”

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County Board open to GAA museum proposals

By Sean Moriarty The Kerry County GAA Board said it would operate “an open door policy” for any plans to build a GAA museum in the county. There have been talks at a political level to build such a museum in Kerry with political rivals in Killarney and Tralee both pushing for it to be built […]

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By Sean Moriarty

The Kerry County GAA Board said it would operate “an open door policy” for any plans to build a GAA museum in the county.

There have been talks at a political level to build such a museum in Kerry with political rivals in Killarney and Tralee both pushing for it to be built in their home town.

Before he retired from politics in April, Michael Gleeson was campaigning to build a GAA and cultural museum on the grounds of Fitzgerald Stadium.

His campaign goes back several years before the recession set in, with a €0.5 million bridging loan secured from Croke Park along with funding from Fáilte Ireland. That funding was lost with the onset of the recession before 2010.

Tim Murphy, the outgoing chairman of the Kerry County Board, has confirmed to the Killarney Advertiser that no approaches have been made to the County Board at executive level during his five year stint at the helm.

However, he said the Board would be open to such approaches provided there is sound financial planning behind the project in place.

“The first and most important aspect is the capital funding and my understanding is there needs to be Fáilte Ireland funding in place first,” he told the Killarney Advertiser. “If it gets up and running, there needs to be very clear talks with all stakeholders so everyone knows each others expectations. A museum attracts footfall, but it costs a lot of money to run. We would offer an open door policy to all proposals but funding, first from a capital point of view and then from an operational point of view, will need to be in place.”

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Loreto pupils are happy to help save the planet

By Michelle Crean School pupils are fast becoming the next generation of environmentalists thanks to a brand new litter-picking campaign. Happy to help save the planet one bit of litter at a time are the children from Scoil Bhríde, Loreto NS, who are currently partaking in the Picker Pal Programme. It’s all about taking on […]

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By Michelle Crean

School pupils are fast becoming the next generation of environmentalists thanks to a brand new litter-picking campaign.

Happy to help save the planet one bit of litter at a time are the children from Scoil Bhríde, Loreto NS, who are currently partaking in the Picker Pal Programme.

It’s all about taking on a litter-picking adventure in their local area as well as learning songs, reading storybooks, filling in activity books while witnessing that their real-world actions are making a positive difference and inspiring others to join the movement.

Picker Pals is a unique primary school programme that gives children the tools and motivation to become the next generation of environmentalists, teacher Claire O’Meara explained.

“The Picker Pal Programme is a fantastic initiative and will go a long way to raise awareness of the impact litter has on our environment,” she told the Killarney Advertiser.

Real litter-picking is motivated by a Picker Pack made from upcycled dinghy sails and containing adult and child litter-picking tools, gloves, hi-vis vests and safety information.

“This pack is then taken home by a different pupil every week. That child takes their adult on a litter-picking adventure. The children then tell the story of their litter-picking adventures through art and writing. Raising awareness is an essential part of the solution to littering. Picker Pals gives young people the tools and positive motivation to steward their local environment and make the world a better place.”

The programme, run by environmental NGO VOICE Ireland, is funded by the Department of the Environment, Climate and Communications and various local authorities across Ireland.

Now in its third year of operation, over one thousand schools all across Ireland will be taking part in the Picker Pals programme this year. In Kerry, 29 schools are taking part, and Scoil Bhríde, Loreto is delighted to be included, she added.

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