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Why Ireland BikeFest is a well-oiled machine

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Biker Mike English tunes up his Harley-Davidson for Ireland BikeFest Killarney. PICTURE: DON MACMONAGLE

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Biker Mike English tunes up his Harley-Davidson motorbike as he prepares for Ireland BikeFest’s 10th anniversary festival which takes place in Killarney on the June Bank Holiday weekend. PICTURE: DON MACMONAGLE
 


 
IT’S Ireland’s biggest motorbike festival and it’s going to be attracting thousands of bike enthusiasts from across the globe during the June bank holiday weekend. The town of Killarney is about to go from 0 to 60 as it revs up to celebrate Ireland BikeFest’s 10th anniversary.

It will be zooming into action from June 3 to 6, and word on the ground is that the organisers are gearing up for their biggest and boldest festival yet.
With ten years experience under their kidney belts, the Ireland BikeFest team really know what they’re at. This festival has evolved into a well-oiled machine attracting bike enthusiasts in their tens of thousands from all over the world. It is Ireland’s only free open biker festival and the festival headquarters are located at The Gleneagle Hotel in Killarney.

Highlights will include daily ride outs around famous touring routes along the Wild Atlantic Way, marshalled by Celtic Thunder Chapter Ireland and Gaelic Chapter Ireland, free Harley-Davidson® demo rides, Waterford and Dublin Harley-Davidson® Dealers, HOG® hospitality and info, Jumpstart, Technical Area, the Custom Bike Show, Parade and lots of free live indoor and outdoor entertainment day and night.

The Bike Village is the main hub of activity throughout the weekend, featuring trader stands selling specialised biker wares including clothing, helmets, trinkets, gadgets, and gizmos. The Village offers plenty of places to eat, grab a drink at the popular Harley Bar, or simply sit and listen to the live bands and DJ’s perform over the course of the weekend.

This year’s line-up of entertainment is epic and culminates with the Saturday night gig in the INEC with Kíla followed by the Tenors of Rock. Be sure to check out The Irish Rolling Stones, Jerry Fish and festival favourites Hells Bells as well. With free entry to all Ireland BikeFest gigs you’ve no excuse not to.

Ireland Bike Fest’s support of Muscular Dystrophy Ireland will continue this year with the “Win a Harley-Davidson®” raffle which will be officially launched on Sunday, May 8. Visit www.mdi.ie for information on how to enter. And if you are an aspiring biker don’t worry! Ireland BikeFest Killarney also welcomes visitors who just want to experience the Bike Village and free live entertainment. Visitors do not even have to own a bike; they can just bask in the glory of some slick, well-built machines and enjoy the unique party and festival atmosphere of Ireland BikeFest.

Ireland BikeFest Killarney is supported by Harley-Davidson® UK, Authorised Dealers and HOG® Chapters in association with Destination Killarney Ltd and Fáilte Ireland. For further information please contact: www.irelandbikefest.com

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Better late than never Christmas present for St Francis Special School

By Sean Moriarty St Francis Special School received a very late Christmas present this week – a specially adapted bike for the pupils to use. Husband and wife team Ciaran […]

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By Sean Moriarty

St Francis Special School received a very late Christmas present this week – a specially adapted bike for the pupils to use.

Husband and wife team Ciaran and Karen Dwyer, directors of Guerin Engineering and Pumps Ltd in Kilcummin, presented the special adapted bicycle to the staff and pupils at the Beaufort school on Tuesday.

After seeing an online request last December that the school needed the bike, they decided to gift one.

They contacted Glencar Medical, a Dublin-based firm that specialises in the supply of equipment to schools like St Francis, and ordered the bicycle.

However, nothing is straightforward in the current climate, Brexit, COVID and war all contributed to a delay in getting the bike to Ireland. Once it was in Dublin there were further delays in sourcing the special straps that St Francis’ children need to ride the bike safely.

It all came to a happy ending this week when the Dwyers were finally able to present their Christmas present to the school.

“We saw this request and we contacted the school and said we wanted to buy one, they told us where to get one, and we ordered it,” Karen told the Killarney Advertiser.

“We had it paid for by the end of the year but then it took three months to get it into the country. It took more time to import the specialist parts. The costs were increasing but we did not mind at all.”

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Jordan Lee to tell his story to the county’s schools

Paralympian Jordan Lee will share his experiences with schools all over Kerry. The Killarney man has embarked on a countywide tour ‘Jordan’s Drive’ in association with Kelliher’s Garage, a series […]

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Paralympian Jordan Lee will share his experiences with schools all over Kerry.

The Killarney man has embarked on a countywide tour ‘Jordan’s Drive’ in association with Kelliher’s Garage, a series of informal talks on his achievements and how he overcame his disability to reach the top of his chosen sport.

The 21-year-old was born with a foreshortened left arm known as amniotic band syndrome but has enjoyed a successful sports career which included representing Ireland at the Tokyo Olympics last summer.

Now he wants to share his story and inspire other students to follow their dreams.

His tour started last week at Colaiste na Sceilge in Cahersiveen and over the next few weeks, depending on his training schedule, will visit schools in Firies, Milltown, and Killarney.

“Don’t be afraid of people with disabilities or different backgrounds,” he said. “A few years ago there was only typical people in classrooms – you never came across people with disabilities or from various different countries. It is a lot more mixed now. I want to inspire people to treat everyone on the same level.”

‘Jordan’s Drive’ is made possible thanks to his role as a brand ambassador for Kelliher’s Garage, dealer principal, Tim Kelliher explained to the Killarney Advertiser.

“Having got to know Jordan so well over the last couple of years we have come to realise how much of an inspiration he is so we decided to ask him to hop into his Toyota CHR Hybrid and bring his story out into the highways and byways of the Kingdom,” he said.

“Headlined ‘Jordans Drive’ and organised by my marketing team headed by Yvonne McMahon they have travelled to many of the schools around Kerry from Cahersiveen to Beaufort, Killorglin and with other dates planned for Firies and Milltown to name but a few. He has spoken his many words of wisdom to the children who have been in awe of the journey and his achievements, and we at Kelliher’s Garage are delighted and proud to have him as our brand ambassador.”

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