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Ian helps launch Puck Fair 2018

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With just over a month to go before Ireland’s oldest festival kicks off for another year, the Puck Fair committee officially launched the 2018 programme during an exciting event that was held at Sheahan’s Bar last Saturday at 8pm. This year’s event was particularly special not only for the Killorglin community but also for the county as a whole, as a well-known and inspirational young Kerry man was on hand to officially launch the age-old event.

Fresh from a recent appearance on The Late Late Show during which he spoke with admirable positivity about his continuing recovery following last year’s cycling tragedy that left him paralysed from the neck down, Ian O’Connell from Killarney took time from his schedule to launch Puck Fair 2018, beginning the celebrations with the enthusiasm he is known for. His inspiring motto, “If you can’t stand up, stand out,” even attracted the attention of his idol Conor McGregor, who paid tribute to the determined teen on Instagram.

Another VIP in attendance on the night was none other than King Puck himself, who this year made an early appearance in a very unique form. Looking bigger and brighter than ever (in spite of his 400+ years), King Puck now reigns permanently over the town of Killorglin thanks to the creativity and vision of artist Dan Leo, who painted a mural of the famous folklore figure on the wall of the CYMS Hall in the town centre.

Speaking ahead of the event, Declan Mangan, President of the Puck Fair committee, said: “It’s an exciting time to host the launch of Puck Fair, with the fabulous mural adding new vibrancy to the town. We’re also delighted to welcome Ian O’Connell this year as our special guest. This inspirational young man represents exactly what Puck Fair is all about; individuality, a strong sense of identity and most importantly, resilience. We may be another year older, but Puck Fair continues to keep us young at heart!”

While King Puck is currently the focus of attention in the town centre, his spotlight will soon be stolen by another very famous figure, who is gearing up to take to the stage as the eagerly-awaited headline act of Puck Fair 2018. Singer Jake Carter, the reigning champion of RTÉ’s Dancing with the Stars and brother of the equally famous Nathan Carter, will perform on the main festival stage on Sunday, August 12, bringing the festival to a stylish and energetic close.

This year’s festival will also feature live music from The Swing Cats (Friday, August 10) and The Cosmic Funk Band (Saturday, August 11), as well as acrobatics from Wobbly Circus Street Show; puppet shows by Kidspartyclub Kerry; children’s entertainment provided by Kingdom Party Pals; Fancy Dress and Bonny Baby Competitions; performances by Afro Trad Ireland and much more. The opening day of Puck Fair on Friday, August 10 will be marked with the annual Coronation Parade and Ceremony, while the Dethronement festivities and subsequent fireworks on the final day of the festival (Sunday, August 12) will provide the perfect ending to Ireland’s most famous yearly event.

For pictures and live updates, check out facebook.com/puckfair or twitter @puck_fair and visit YouTube to view puckfairofficial videos.

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Kathleen honoured as new boat is launched

It was a very special and momentous day for Muckross Rowing Club on Sunday – as not only did they launch a new boat – but did so to honour a life-long supporter. Members and supporters gathered at the club’s boathouse as the club’s newest racing boat, a Janousek coxed four, was officially launched in […]

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It was a very special and momentous day for Muckross Rowing Club on Sunday – as not only did they launch a new boat – but did so to honour a life-long supporter.

Members and supporters gathered at the club’s boathouse as the club’s newest racing boat, a Janousek coxed four, was officially launched in honour of Kathleen Murphy. The event was made all the more special as it had been so long awaited by the club. While the boat was purchased prior to the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, a launch event at the club was not possible until the recent easing of public health restrictions.

Among the crowd gathered were members of the extended Murphy and Kenny families as well as many of Kathleen’s neighbours and friends from Mangerton Road and beyond.

Kathleen (nee Kenny) was born and raised in Muckross and has enjoyed close family ties with the rowing club from childhood to the present day. The Kennys of Muckross and their extended family have long played a central role in the club extending to over a century, reflected in the names of boats named and launched before in honour of other family members including Micheal Kenny and Jack O’Shea. Kathleen has long been among the most prominent and recognised club’s supporters at the annual Killarney Regatta, proudly sporting the club’s yellow colours while cheering on crews at all levels from Juvenile to Senior and Veteran. Together with her late husband Jerry, Kathleen has also played a central role in fundraising for the club with countless tickets sold weekly for the local Muckross Lottery since its launch in early 1990s. Both Kathleen and Jerry were previously recognised for their contribution to the club and both named as Vice Presidents. Kathleen and Jerry’s children and grandchildren continue the family tradition both on the lake and onshore, contributing to the club’s success and development as active rowers, coaches and committee members.

Presiding over the launch was Club Chairman Sean Daly and the blessing of the boat was carried out by Fr Kieran O’Brien.

The club was also delighted to welcome Emer Corridan, General Manager of the Cahernane House Hotel – whose sponsorship of the club supported the boat’s purchase.

The ceremonial popping of the champagne cork was carried out by Kathleen’s granddaughter Áine, and after a sprinkling of the bow, the boat was formally launched on the water by five of Kathleen’s grandchildren – Áine and Shona O’Sullivan, Daniel, Jack and Katie Murphy. The special launch event was an emotional day for the family and club with many memories of Kathleen’s late husband Jerry, whose anniversary was recently observed, in addition to family members gone before. Speaking on behalf of Kathleen, her son Kieran spoke of the great honour for Kathleen and her family to have one of the club’s racing boats named in her honour. Kieran expressed the family’s gratitude to the club, its committee and Chairman Sean Daly, President Maurice Coffey and Vice Presidents and to all the members, supporters and friends in attendance. The ceremonial proceedings were followed by refreshments outside the club’s new boathouse.

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Stylish Miriam wows at the races

When it comes to the style stakes, one local lady proved she’s got it after winning the female Most Stylish Racegoer this week. Miriam Prendergast from Killarney was selected by fashion blogger and judge Emily O’Donoghue aka @fashionablyfortyish on Sunday, the opening day of the Listowel Harvest Racing Festival. Benny O’Keeffe from County Meath was […]

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When it comes to the style stakes, one local lady proved she’s got it after winning the female Most Stylish Racegoer this week.

Miriam Prendergast from Killarney was selected by fashion blogger and judge Emily O’Donoghue aka @fashionablyfortyish on Sunday, the opening day of the Listowel Harvest Racing Festival.

Benny O’Keeffe from County Meath was also selected for his style and both winners each received a €400 cash prize, sponsored by McElligotts Tralee and Honda Ireland.

Miriam wore a black bustier wide legged jumpsuit with belt, styled with a very feminine one sleeve off white blouse with ruched details. She both designed and made the outfit herself and paired it with a headpiece she borrowed from a friend who got it in MacBees Killarney. She finished her look with a pretty vintage bag.

Benny wore a sky blue suit he purchased in Burtons, paired with a merl grey waistcoat, set off with a soft pink shirt cleverly coordinated with a pink and grey check tie. He purchased his very dapper hat in the Ukraine.

The runners-up in the ladies category each received a generous hamper from McElligotts Tralee with special thanks to McGuires Pharmacy Listowel. The runners-up in the gents category received tickets to the Sunday of the June Bank Holiday race meeting in Listowel in 2022.

Of course, there is more to come in the style stakes with one of Ireland’s most prestigious best dressed events – the McElligotts Honda Ladies Day – making a most welcome return this year to the racecourse today (Friday), judged by style icon Celia Holman Lee, it has an overall cash prize fund of €1,000 and the winner will also receive the most amazing beauty hamper sponsored by McGuire’s Pharmacy.

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