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Garth Brooks to be formally invited to Killarney

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BLAME IT ALL ON HIS ROOTS: Cllr Niall 'Botty' O'Callaghan practices the airs of 'That's An Irish Lullaby' in Variety Sounds in College St. Photo: Sean Moriarty

By Sean Moriarty

A Killarney councillor will make direct contact with Garth Brook's Irish agent in an effort to get the Country Music superstar to play concerts in Fitzgerald Stadium in the future.

Cllr Niall ‘Botty’ O’Callaghan was inspired to invite Country Music’s biggest stars to Killarney after watching a Netflix documentary about Brooks.

In an emotional scene in the film, Brooks speaks of his late mother Colleen Carroll. Mother and son are shown singing ‘That Is An Irish Lullaby’, a song which features Killarney.

Brooks is due to return to play in Ireland in the next year or so, with Cork’s PáircChaoimh mooted as one possible venue. His last planned appearance in Ireland, in 2014, was shrouded in controversy. He had sold out five nights at Croke Park but local residents fought successfully to reduce that to just three nights. As a result he cancelled all five dates as he did not want to let down the fans who had already paid for tickets.

O’Callaghan, who watched the Netflix documentary ‘The Road I Am On” said he was blown away by Brooks singing about Killarney. This has inspired him to issue an unofficial invite to the Oklahoma-born singer via his own personal Twitter account.

O’Callaghan’s online request gathered so much positivity that he has decided to take the invite another step forward and will, this week, make direct contact with Peter Aitken Promotions, the Dublin-based music management firm that was behind Brooks aborted attempt to play Croke Park six years ago.

“I know Peter well,” Botty told the Killarney Advertiser. “He used to holiday in Killarney, 30 years ago, and he stayed with my mother. I will be contacting Peter direct and telling him that Garth Brooks can play in Killarney for as many nights as he wants and there will no problems with the neighbours.”

Fitzgerald Stadium has previously hosted major concerts with global stars like Elton John and Bryan Adams performing there in the past as part of the now discontinued Killarney SummerFest.

The Killarney Advertiser was the first local media outlet to highlight ‘The Road I Am On.’ Three weeks ago the Netflix documentary featured in our ‘Watch, Read, Listen' page as a must-watch show for that week.

“It was amazing,” added O’Callaghan. “How many millions of fans were watching him sing about Killarney. It was like he was singing about Killarney all his life.”

Lyrics from the song:

'Over in Killarney, many years ago,
My mother sang a song to me in tones so soft and low,
Just a simple little ditty in her good old Irish way,
And I'd give the world if I could hear that song of hers today'

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Shock at the death of “wonderful community activist”

There was a great sense of shock over the weekend when new of the death of Yvonne Quill, a Tidy Towns champion and wonderful community activist, became known. Yvonne, from […]

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There was a great sense of shock over the weekend when new of the death of Yvonne Quill, a Tidy Towns champion and wonderful community activist, became known.

Yvonne, from Barleymount and formerly of the Cafe, College Street, passed away following a short illness on Friday. Requiem Mass takes place this morning (Monday) at 11am in The Prince of Peace Church, Fossa, followed by burial in Aghadoe Lawn Cemetery.

Killarney Chamber of Tourism and Commerce President Niall Kelleher said she will be very fondly remembered as an incredibly dedicated woman, a strong personality who led by example and spearheaded the town’s Tidy Towns committee with such passion for over 25 years.

He recalled that her proudest day was when, as chairperson of the Killarney Looking Good Committee, she inspired Killarney to the prestigious overall national award in 2011 which had proved so elusive prior to that.

“Yvonne led by example and she never asked anyone to do something she wouldn’t do herself. You would seldom see her without the yellow bib, playing her part and showing us all what needed to be done to give Killarney the edge,” Mr Kelleher said.

“While winning the overall prize was something special, Killarney has never been far from the top and it has won a gold medal almost every year which is testament to Yvonne’s great ability to organise, her steely determination and her unrivalled ability to rally the troops,” he added.

The Chamber President also remembered her as a great businesswoman, a master baker and confectioner whose café on College Street was a must-visit for a whole generation of Killarney people and visitors.

“Yvonne Quill has left a great legacy in her home town. We thank her for what she has done, we’ll remember her incredible work ethic and we’ll ensure her name will live on in Killarney by continuing the commitment to the Tidy Towns initiative.”

Johnny McGuire, a member of the executive of Killarney Chamber of Tourism and Commerce, who worked alongside Yvonne at the helm of the Tidy Towns committee, said she was a born leader who inspired the whole community and always led by example.

“Killarney would never have won the All-Ireland Tidy Towns award without her. She was the inspirational captain of the winning team. Yvonne worked night and day and, when it came to Tidy Towns, there was no downtime for her,” Mr McGuire said.

“Her commitment to the cause brought her into every school and every housing estate in Killarney. Working closely with the late Fr Michael Murphy, her great friend, Kathleen Foley, and others, they really put Killarney in contention for the top awards every year. The name Yvonne Quill was known and respected in Tidy Towns circles throughout the entire country – she really was a legend and everything she turned her hand to,
she succeeded. Killarney will miss her,” he added.

She will be deeply missed by her husband John, children Peter, Sandra and Sean, her son-in-law Peter, daughter-in-law Mairéad, grandchildren Anna, Jake, Ted, Abby and Luke, sister Angela Mulvey, brothers-in-law, sisters-in-law, and extended family, friends, neighbours and the community.

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Jim awarded for life-long service to the community

By Michelle Crean Listry local Jim O’Shea was honoured last week as members of the community council presented him with an award for his life-long service to the community. Jim […]

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By Michelle Crean

Listry local Jim O’Shea was honoured last week as members of the community council presented him with an award for his life-long service to the community.

Jim received the O’Shea Award for 2022 at a meeting of Directors of Listry Community Council held on September 21.

Jim has been involved in Athletics from a very early age both as a competitor and administrator.

He was very much involved with Community Games in Milltown/Listry as organiser and coach. He was also involved with the Farranfore Maine Valley Athletic Club since its foundation.

Over the years Jim has competed in athletic events, mainly high jump and long jump, both in Ireland and abroad.

Recently he travelled to Derby in the UK in the British Masters Championship and won Gold in the 100 metres and Long Jump and finished second in the High Jump.

Jim, who is a very modest man, was actively involved with Listry Community Council as a volunteer driver for Meals on Wheels and for his commitment to keeping our community litter free by organising a number of litter picking days each year.

Always interested in fitness, Jim often came along to the Listry Seniors Social day and led the group in gentle exercises.

“Jim is a very worthy recipient of the O’Shea Award 2022 and we thank him for a lifetime of service to others,” Tony Darmody, Chairman, said.

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