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Global Irish Festival series 2021 funding announced for Kerry

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The Global Irish Festival Series, a Fáilte Ireland and Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade initiative, aims to harness diaspora links for the benefit of local and community tourism.

Looking ahead to 2021, Minister of State for Tourism and Sport, Brendan Griffin and Minister of State for the Diaspora and International Development, Ciaran Cannon have announced funding of up to €100k for Kerry County Council through the Global Irish Festival Series, a joint initiative between Fáilte Ireland and the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade to provide funding and support, through relevant local authorities, for events that tap into international diaspora networks to help attract overseas visitors.

The festival series is part of the National Tourism Development Authority’s recovery strategy for the tourism industry which will feed into the work of the Tourism Recovery Taskforce recently established by Ministers Shane Ross and Brendan Griffin.

Kerry County Council will receive funding to develop events to encourage Ireland’s diaspora to visit Ireland once the COVID-19 public health emergency passes.

“This is a hugely difficult and anxious time for the tourism industry, but it is important that we look ahead,” Minister of State for Tourism and Sport, Brendan Griffin, said. “The Global Irish Festival Series will enable the local community in Kerry to build on their diaspora networks and deepen connections around the world that will help to generate tourism activity next year.”

The Global Irish Festival Series will support Kerry County Council’s An Turas Mór – The Journey Home festival, with up to €100k in funding. The festival will include a month-long heritage programme of special thematic events designed in collaboration with existing festivals in Kerry, including a series of participative GAA events throughout October 2021.

Minister of State for the Diaspora and International Development, Ciaran Cannon, added:
“In the face of the global challenge posed by COVID-19, it is important for us to re-affirm our sense of solidarity and common identity. The Global Irish Festival Series is an important part of reinforcing the connections between Ireland and our diaspora. We will work with our partners in Fáilte Ireland and the local community in Kerry to strengthen their deep connection with the diaspora.”

Speaking about the importance of festival series, Fáilte Ireland’s Head of Festivals, Ciara Sugrue, said that they are delighted to work with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade once again on the Global Irish Festival Series as they look at rebuilding the tourism industry and the vital contributions it makes to Irish society.

“The festivals and events supported through the series will help drive tourism to specific locations, including regional areas outside of current hotspots, creating new economic benefits for local communities and this will be hugely important as we move into the recovery phase of the COVID-19 crisis.”

Welcoming the announcement, Moira Murrell, Chief Executive of Kerry County Council said Kerry is pleased to be part of the Global Irish Festival Series and will work with the Rose of Tralee network, the GAA and other groups to attract members of the Kerry diaspora back to the county for a showcase festival in October 2021.

“The fostering of linkages with the extended Kerry family overseas is a key goal of the Council and it will help drive tourism and economic growth in these challenging times.”

The Global Irish Festival Series will take place in 2021 on the Wild Atlantic Way in the new locations of Kerry and Mayo, alongside Limerick and Donegal where the festival series has taken place since it was launched as a pilot initiative in 2018.

The Global Irish Festival Series is funded by Fáilte Ireland and the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

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Kodaline to play stripped down Killarney gig

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By Michelle Crean

One of Ireland’s best known bands – who have had their recently released studio album streamed more than 60 million times – as well as reached 100 million YouTube views – are set to come to Killarney.

Kodaline will play their first ever stripped down fully acoustic tour on December 4 in the Gleneagle INEC Arena, which is part of a nationwide tour across the country.

Tickets went on sale yesterday (Friday) from the www.inec.ie.

‘One Day At A Time’ is the band’s fourth album, and adds a new chapter to a career that has already encompassed three number 1 albums in Ireland, two Top 5 albums in the UK, and more than a billion streams at Spotify. Kodaline approached the album with a streamlined process that took them back to their roots. The majority of the sessions revolved around the four band members alone in their modest recording space in Dublin, with bassist Jason Boland leading the production side of things.

CAREER

In 2019, Kodaline played some of the biggest shows of their career. At home in Dublin they sold-out two huge outdoor shows at St Anne’s Park, while a 10-date UK tour culminated with a packed show at London’s historic Roundhouse. Further afield, they hit festivals including Lollapalooza, Benicàssim and Open’er before becoming the first Irish band to headline the massive NH7 Weekender in Pune, India. Their extensive touring throughout Asia also included a headline set at Monsoon Music Festival in Vietnam plus dates in China, Japan, South Korea, The Phillippines, Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, Taiwan and Singapore.

“We’re excited to do our first ever stripped down fully acoustic tour, it’s something we’ve wanted to do for a long time and something that’s gonna be very special for us. Hope to see you guys there,” the band said.

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Relief for students as State exams finally begin

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Kayleigh O’Connor and Bethany Kelly pictured ahead of their Home Economics exam on Wednesday afternoon.


By Michelle Crean and Grigoriy Geniyevskiy


Although it was a Leaving Cert like no other – that didn’t stop some students from feeling nerves and others relief – as they finally began their State exams on Wednesday morning.


After a mix of homeschooling due to the COVID lockdowns, it was a tough final year for the Sixth Years who at times had no idea if they final school exams would even go ahead.

Some have opted for no exams, while others want a mixture of Accredited Grades combined with the option to sit the exams.

And it all began on Wednesday morning as English Paper 1 was first up followed by Home Economics in the afternoon.

REACTION

For Killian O’Brien, a student in St Brendan’s College, he said that there was no stress as he headed in.
“I’m grand out, not stressed at all.”

George Griffin, also a student in St Brendan’s College was glad to begin the final leg of his school journey and said he too felt grand about it.

“Predictable grades are a good backing to it, it levels out the stress.”

His classmate Darren Counihan was “not too worried” about what was ahead of him.

“You can only go up in points, not down thanks to accredited points.”

Luke Tindall, also a student in the school said he was alright and “not too stressed”

For Adam O’Connor there was some nerves.
“I’m feeling a bit of everything, but mostly stressed,” he said. “I’m just waiting to get it done and over with.”

In Killarney Community College Oliwia Bielanska spoke to the Killarney Advertiser after coming out of her first State exam.

“I was nervous at first, but once I started writing it was all good.”

Aoife O’Brien from the same school said she was “kind of nervous” but that “it was fine”.

“It wasn’t too bad.”

Stefan Lajdar, also a student in Killarney Community College said it went “alright”.

“I finished a bit earlier. I was a bit under pressure before the exam, but it was easy enough. We have a backup with the predicted grades so it was fine.”

A turbulent year



Principal of Killarney Community College, Stella Loughnane, acknowledged the uniqueness of this year. “This year has been a turbulent and emotional year for this particular Leaving Cert group. Thankfully, all of our students sitting these exams have the security of knowing they already have an accredited grade from their subject teacher and can really try to improve on that when sitting their chosen exams. I think this is of great comfort to students and will ease some of their nerves.The majority of our students have embraced this challenge and chosen to sit their exams.”


She added that also this year there are a lot more COVID guidelines from both the Department of Health and the Department of Education that both the school and students must adhere to.

“This year has shown how adaptable our students are, therefore I don’t believe they will cause too much fuss. However, like every other year, our students arrived with the age old butterflies in their stomachs but a willingness to begin their exams.”

Sean Coffey, Principal of St Brendan’s College said it was great to see the exams finally underway.

“It has been the most incredible two years for the students. This is as fair as you can get really. I would say the Sixth Years had a less disruptive year than other students as they had their eye on the prise and could see the finish line in sight.”

Killarney Community College student Stefan Lajdar said it was easy enough once he got going.
Aoife O’Brien student of Killarney Community College said the first exam wasn’t too bad.
Bharragh O’Shea from Killarney Community College felt his first exam went pretty well. “I thought it was easy.”
Happy to get it over and done with was Adam O’Connor from The Sem.
George Griffin from St Brendan’s College pictured before Wednesday’s English exam.
Darren Counihan student from St Brendan’s College said that he was not too worried ahead of the first exam on Wednesday.
Killian O’Brien from St Brendan’s College said he wasn’t feeling stressed before the first exam on Wednesday morning.
Katerina Polyakova and Maryia Casey from Killarney Community College pictured cramming in some last minute revision before Wednesday’s Home Ec exam.
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Lucky local wins dream Barraduff home

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WIN A HOUSE: Barraduff Community Field Organisation fundraiser sub-committee members: Derry Healy, Michael O’Keeffe, Cathy Somers, Linda Dennehy, John Culloty and Rory D’Arcy pictured in the INEC on Sunday evening during the ‘Win A Dream Kerry Home’ draw.

By Michelle Crean

It has been seven months in the making but it was one lucky local who claimed the top prize – a 𝟯-𝗕𝗲𝗱 d𝗲𝘁𝗮𝗰𝗵𝗲𝗱 h𝗼𝘂𝘀𝗲 𝗶𝗻 𝗕𝗮𝗿𝗿𝗮𝗱𝘂𝗳𝗳.


Ticket no. 17033 owned by Catriona Moriarty was the winner, chosen on Sunday evening in the ‘Win A Dream Kerry Home’ fundraiser prize draw live streamed on Facebook and the website from the INEC Arena, Killarney.


The MC for the evenings event was Rory D’Arcy, fundraiser committee member.


Committee member, Liam Warren, joined Rory to speak about the history and aims of the Barraduff Community Field Organisation since its inception in 1977. It was then time for the prize draw, with the combined value of all prizes in excess of €300,000. Rory introduced the independent adjudicating team of Peter Malone, Solicitor, Malone Hegarty Solicitors, and Denis Murphy, Auditor, Moriarty & Murphy Accountants.

It was certainly a night to remember for all prize winners, particularly Catriona Moriarty who will soon be receiving the keys to her new home.


“The Barraduff Community Field Organisation are forever grateful to all who supported this fundraiser, through purchasing of ticket(s) and sponsoring of prizes, to assist us in realising the vision of our local community. This is only the end of the beginning of another chapter!” Michael O’Keeffe said.

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