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Here we goat again as King Puck gets set to take his throne

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Launching Puck Fair are Deputy Michael Healy-Rae TD, Ruth Albrecht, Tweak, Jess the dog; back, Bl‡thaid Carney, Killorglin, Declan Mangan, chairman, Puck Festival, Tim O'Shea and members of Afro Trad Ireland, Samuel Kiwanuka and Rosie Healy, Fionnuala O'Dwyer, Diageo, Queen of Puck Fair Kerry Lynch, Caragh Lake, Sean Coffey, Puck Fair Committee. PICTURE: VALERIE OÕSULLIVAN

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IT’S always a sign that autumn is nigh when Kerry gets in the mood for Ireland’s oldest festival, the one and only Puck Fair. The Killorglin event, which unfolds on August 10, 11 and 12 every year, sees a wild mountain goat crowned king as he goes on to reign over the town for the duration of the festival.

The event has, of course, given rise to the now-well known quip, “where the goat is a king and the people act the goat.

This year’s exciting programme of events was unveiled at a launch on Rossbeigh Beach. Families, day-trippers, weekend revellers and visitors from far and wide are called to court to pay homage to the one true Irish king, who will also rule over the Wild Atlantic Way.

With a lineage that traces back to ancient times, and with no rival in sight, this year’s King Puck commands all the territories, from where the land meets the sea to the rocky outcrops of the Kerry Mountains.

Killorglin’s much-loved Puck Fair is undeniably one of quirkiest festivals in the world, as well as being Ireland’s original and oldest ‘Gathering Festival’.

The pinnacle of the celebration surrounds the crowning of a wild mountain goat as the festival's King which honours a tradition and heritage that is purported to be ancient, but can only officially be traced back to 1603 when King James I issued a charter granting legal status to the existing fair in Killorglin. This coronation ceremony traditionally takes place on the first evening of the festivities in collaboration with Fáilte Ireland. This year’s King Puck is also to be crowned “The King of the Wild Atlantic Way.

Kerry Lynch, aged 12, from Glounaguillagh National School, Caragh Lake has been named as the Queen of Puck Fair, with Bláthnaid Carney from Killorglin as her lady in waiting. Her majesty will be honoured with the crowning of the goat king during the most popular celebration of the Fair.

Prior to the coronation, the King and Queen will be paraded through the town in order to bestow the ‘Freedom of the Town’ upon all in attendance and the festival itself. This marks the beginning of three days of ceremony, merriment, celebration and music.

The 2016 parade promises to be a kaleidoscope of colourful floats and entertainers. The route, which was changed last year, is designed to allow greater viewing opportunities and will begin at the Bridge and follow up through Lower Bridge Street, on to The Square and Upper Bridge Street and finally onto Iveragh Road.

Another popular event on opening day or Gathering Day which features Ireland’s oldest continually running horse fair.

Following on from Wednesday’s commencement ceremonies, Thursday the 11th promises to be equally as fun filled and dynamic, chock-a-block with music and entertainment for the whole family to enjoy.

The second day of Puck Fair is traditionally known as ‘Fair Day’ and the line up so far includes a number of free workshops for dance, circus skills and a drum & Irish pipe workshop.

Friday, the Final day of Puck Fair for another year, and known as 'Scattering Day ' is action packed and particularly suited to families. A firework display will light up the sky over Killorglin, a fitting way to bid farewell to Puck Fair. For a list of all to see and do at Puck Fair see www.puckfair.ie
 


 
Launching Puck Fair are Deputy Michael Healy-Rae TD, Ruth Albrecht, Tweak, Jess the dog; back, Bláthaid Carney, Killorglin, Declan Mangan, chairman, Puck Festival, Tim O'Shea and members of Afro Trad Ireland, Samuel Kiwanuka and Rosie Healy, Fionnuala O'Dwyer, Diageo, Queen of Puck Fair Kerry Lynch, Caragh Lake, Sean Coffey, Puck Fair Committee. PICTURE: VALERIE O’SULLIVAN

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Family to run in memory of the late Linda Eviston

By Sean Moriarty The family of a much-loved Killarney woman who passed away from cancer almost a year ago plan to run a marathon past her favourite local landmarks in her memory. Linda Eviston died on October 10 last after a long battle with cancer. Her husband Patrick and son Erik, with the support of […]

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By Sean Moriarty

The family of a much-loved Killarney woman who passed away from cancer almost a year ago plan to run a marathon past her favourite local landmarks in her memory.

Linda Eviston died on October 10 last after a long battle with cancer.

Her husband Patrick and son Erik, with the support of her daughter Alannah, will run a 42.2km course, on the day before her anniversary to raise funds for the Irish Cancer Society.

The route will be based on landmarks that were an important part of Linda’s life. Starting from the family home in Dromkerry, before heading for the town centre and passing the Eviston House Hotel, Linda’s grandmother’s home at Park Road, Linda’s childhood home and national school in Glenflesk, Loreto where Linda attended secondary school, back to Killarney and finishing at Linda’s pride and joy – Brook Lodge Hotel.

“It is tough but we wanted to do something in Linda’s memory and help other people who might find themselves in similar circumstances,” Pat told the Killarney Advertiser. “We originally hoped to do the Dublin City Marathon but that got cancelled. This route is much better, but much tougher as it’s more hilly.”

All proceeds will be donated to the Irish Cancer Society and donations can be made via: www.justgiving.com/fundraising/inhonouroflinda.

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Women bravely bare all for Kerry’s first ‘Dip in the Nip’

By Michelle Crean  It really was girl power at its finest – as 170 women of all ages braved the elements on Sunday to bare all for charity at the weekend. Shore Acre in Camp was the location which was only revealed to the participants for Kerry’s first ever ‘Dip in the Nip’. And amongst […]

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By Michelle Crean
 

It really was girl power at its finest – as 170 women of all ages braved the elements on Sunday to bare all for charity at the weekend.

Shore Acre in Camp was the location which was only revealed to the participants for Kerry’s first ever ‘Dip in the Nip’. And amongst the all female grouping were some Killarney ladies who joined in the empowering adventure for what was described as “a special and unforgettable morning” all in aid of Recovery Haven Kerry.

According to Marisa Reidy from Recovery Haven, the women were of all ages and all walks of life who came together for so many personal reasons.

“Some were still on their own cancer journey, some were celebrating coming out the other side and of course, many were there to honour friends and loved ones who they had lost to cancer, but we were all equal on the day – flaws and all,” Marisa, who also took part in the event, told the Killarney Advertiser.

“It was a truly uplifting and exhilarating experience and we are so, so grateful to each and every lady who joined us for a morning we will never forget. One woman described it as ‘companionship among strangers’ and that really sums it up perfectly. It was emotional, there were some tears, but lots of laughter and we couldn’t have asked for anything more. When the ladies hit the water, they all formed a circle and held hands in a gesture that was totally unplanned – it just happened organically and it was quite overwhelming.”

She added that a very special mention has to be made to Michaela and John Edwards and their team from Wild Water Adventures for their support and expertise in ensuring no stone was left unturned in making it a fabulous, safe event.

“It was an all-female team from beginning to end, from our own volunteers, stewards, registration, Gardai, teas and coffees, lifeguards, sea rescue – girl power at its finest! Now all that’s left to do is start planning for 2022!”

Donations are still being taken via the link on the Recovery Haven Kerry Facebook page.

“So far we are close on €9,000 which is just fabulous.”

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