NEW MEMBERS WELCOME: Debby Looney from Killarney Toastmasters says new members are welcome to the group which is currently using Zoom due to the restrictions. Photo: Michelle Crean
By Michelle Crean
COVID restrictions doesn't mean you can't take on a new hobby or learn a new skill - as one local club is proving - now that they've taken their classes online.
The local Killarney Toastmasters group is still very active - although now it's online - but they're seeking new members to join them and what a better way to meet new people and socialise.
Yes, they are a public speaking club, and as restrictions mean they cannot meet in person for now, they took to virtual meet ups and it's all very easy.
Now they're looking for new members and are inviting the public to come along as a guest via Zoom to give it a go.
"At Toastmasters we are certainly feeling this challenge, but are doing our best to rise to it," Debby Looney, a member of the club, told the Killarney Advertiser.
"For many of us, the thought of standing before a room full of people, be they a class of eager students, work colleagues, church attendees or friends and family at a function, is daunting at best, terrifying at worst. Toastmasters is an international organisation, which has helped members for almost one hundred years to overcome their nerves when speaking in public. A large part of this is also gaining the confidence to take on leadership roles. It is relevant to so many parts of life, at home, in the workplace and at other clubs and associations," she said.
"I personally joined Toastmasters following the funeral of a dear family member. I just could not face my family to say a few words about her, and this haunted me for a long time. I still regret having had such a fear, but am glad to have joined Toastmasters and conquered it. So, speaking from experience, Toastmasters works.
However, a large part of the experience of this club, and much of the enjoyment of going, is meeting new people from all walks of life, who give speeches on the most diverse topics – from hillwalking, travelling and sports to personal stories, life experiences and technical talks. You come away from each meeting knowing something new!"
"Our club now uses Zoom to conduct virtual meetings. There are downsides to this, of course. The personal contact is certainly something I miss. The thing is, there are many upsides also. There is a skill in presenting a speech to people via a computer, a skill which many people now need as they are working from home. When presenting via a computer, it is not just speaking; there is lighting, sound, background and even make-up to consider! Where better to practice than in the safe, positive environment of a club where everyone has your best interest at heart? Zoom meetings also cut out the travelling – you can now enjoy the club from the comfort of your armchair, which is very nice as the winter closes in. Members who live in remote parts of the county, as well as vulnerable members, can now continue to enjoy the social aspect of the club meeting," Debby said.
"Despite the new format our meetings have taken, we continue to offer the benefits Toastmasters offers, albeit in different ways. We continue to welcome new members, and encourage ‘guests’ to join our meetings, much like we always have. In fact, people who have long wondered what it’s all about have now joined a virtual meeting, and I would encourage anyone to do so!"
The group meet every second and fourth Tuesday of the month. Their online meetings run from 7.30pm to 9pm. Have a look at their Facebook page, email email@example.com, or phone Debby, on 086 6088156 if you are considering becoming a member or would like to join as a guest.
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 […]
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.
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 […]
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.
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...
Stylish Miriam wows at the races
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