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Killarney goes wild for adventure

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Last weekend's Wander Wild Festival was a huge success with double the amount of event bookings on last year.

Base Camp for the Wander Wild Festival Killarney, at the Church of the sloes, St Mary's Church of Ireland, town centre. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan/FREE PIC***Issued 26/03/2023

Earthly sounds...Donal and Una Dowd, and Breda O'Farrell experiencing 'the Garden of Unearthly Delights' installation by Artist, Augustine Leuder - which is an immersive 3D sound installation around the blue pool in the heart of Cloghereen Nature trail, Killarney National Park, as part of the Wander Wild Outdoor Festival at the weekend in Killarney. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan/FREE PICS*** ISSUED 26/03/2023

Earthly sounds... 'the Garden of Unearthly Delights' installation by Artist, Augustine Leuder - which is an immersive 3D sound installation around the blue pool in the heart of Cloghereen Nature trail, Killarney National Park, as part of the Wander Wild Outdoor Festival at the weekend in Killarney. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan/FREE PICS*** ISSUED 26/03/2023

Earthly sounds... 'the Garden of Unearthly Delights' installation by Artist, Augustine Leuder - which is an immersive 3D sound installation around the blue pool in the heart of Cloghereen Nature trail, Killarney National Park, as part of the Wander Wild Outdoor Festival at the weekend in Killarney. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan

Earthly sounds... 'the Garden of Unearthly Delights' installation by Artist, Augustine Leuder - which is an immersive 3D sound installation around the blue pool in the heart of Cloghereen Nature trail, Killarney National Park, as part of the Wander Wild Outdoor Festival at the weekend in Killarney. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan/FREE PICS*** ISSUED 26/03/2023

Earthly sounds... 'the Garden of Unearthly Delights' installation by Artist, Augustine Leuder - which is an immersive 3D sound installation around the blue pool in the heart of Cloghereen Nature trail, Killarney National Park, as part of the Wander Wild Outdoor Festival at the weekend in Killarney. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan/FREE PICS*** ISSUED 26/03/2023

Let it rain..Pupils from MACademy Performing arts school, Killarney performing at the opening ceremony of Wander Wild Festival, in Killarney, on Friday evening. The adventure and wellness festival continues until Sunday. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan/FREE PIC**

Don't let it rain on our parade...Chairman of Wander Wild Festival Killarney, Pat Chawke, being shielded from the rain by Conor Hennigan, Wander Wild Festival, at the opening ceremony on Friday evening. The adventure and wellness festival continues until Sunday. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan/FREE PIC**

Cathaoirleach Killarney Municipal District, Cllr Niall Kelleher, being shielded from the rain by Conor Hennigan, Wander Wild Festival, at the opening ceremony of the Wander Wild Outdoor Festival in Killarney town on Friday evening. The adventure and wellness festival continues until Sunday. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan/FREE PIC**

Rain Dance...Mark Clifford at Celtic Steps, performing in the rain at the Wander Wild Festival opening ceremony in Killarney town on Friday evening. The adventure and wellness festival continues until Sunday. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan/FREE PIC**

Rain Dance...Peig O'Connor of Celtic Steps, performing in the rain at the Wander Wild Festival opening ceremony in Killarnet town on Friday evening. The adventure and wellness festival continues until Sunday. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan/FREE PIC**

Rain Dance...Peig O'Connor of Celtic Steps, performing in the rain at the Wander Wild Festival opening ceremony in Killarnet town on Friday evening. The adventure and wellness festival continues until Sunday. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan/FREE PIC**

No getting away from the rain at the Wander Wild Festival opening ceremony in Killarney town on Friday evening. The adventure and wellness festival continues until Sunday. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan/FREE PIC**

Donal Dowd right, and Colm O'Halloran, at the opening ceremony of the Wander WIld Festival in Killarney town on Friday evening. The adventure and wellness festival continues until Sunday. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan/FREE PIC**

Never mind the weather...David Rea of Celtic Steps and his troupe of musicians and dancers, with MC Kieran Healy, making the most of the terrible rain, at the Wander Wild Festival opening ceremony in Killarney town on Friday evening. The adventure and wellness festival continues until Sunday. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan/FREE PIC**

Never mind the weather...David Rea of Celtic Steps and his troupe of musicians and dancers, with MC Kieran Healy, making the most of the terrible rain, at the Wander Wild Festival opening ceremony in Killarney town on Friday evening. The adventure and wellness festival continues until Sunday. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan/FREE PIC**

Never mind the weather...David Rea of Celtic Steps and his troupe of musicians and dancers, with MC Kieran Healy, making the most of the terrible rain, at the Wander Wild Festival opening ceremony in Killarney town on Friday evening. The adventure and wellness festival continues until Sunday. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan/FREE PIC**

Green fingers...Jennifer Pyne at Ireland’s first hospitality hydroponic urban farm in Killarney as part of Wander Wild Festival foodie tour, tasting local artisan produce and exploring Killarney's new and very vibrant local food scene as part of the Wander Wild Festival which ran over the weekend. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan/FREE PIC***Issued 26/03/2023

Louise Cronin, at Ireland’s first hospitality hydroponic urban farm in Killarney as part of Wander Wild Festival foodie tour, tasting local artisan produce and exploring Killarney's new and very vibrant local food scene as part of the Wander Wild Festival which ran over the weekend. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan/FREE PIC***Issued 26/03/2023

Emily Treacy of Luna, Killarney, greeting guests as part of Wander Wild Festival foodie tour, tasting local artisan produce and exploring Killarney's new and very vibrant local food scene as part of the Wander Wild Festival which ran over the weekend. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan/FREE PIC***Issued 26/03/2023

Emily Treacy of Luna, Killarney, with FIlm&Documentary Maker, Adrian McCarthy and his wife Grace, part of Wander Wild Festival foodie tour, tasting local artisan produce and exploring Killarney's new and very vibrant local food scene as part of the Wander Wild Festival which ran over the weekend. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan/FREE PIC***Issued 26/03/2023

Lak Shana of the Tanyard Restaurant, Killarney Plaza Hotel, greeting guests, part of Wander Wild Festival foodie tour, tasting local artisan produce and exploring Killarney's new and very vibrant local food scene as part of the Wander Wild Festival which ran over the weekend. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan/FREE PIC***Issued 26/03/2023

The town was buzzing all weekend, especially around Basecamp at St Mary's Church. Locals and visitors alike enjoyed the huge range of activities that were on offer, from relaxing yoga to adventurous steep ground masterclasses on Carrauntoohil. It all kicked off with the Nature Valley Mangerton Hike with Roz Purcell on Friday.

Even the challenging weather didn't dampen spirits of those who joined the hiking enthusiast for the climb. Two sold out screenings of local director Adrian McCarthy's film featuring adventurer Kevin Leahy (Black Sheep Hostel) were a huge success. On Saturday morning, the sunrise dip started off a busy day of activities on the lakes, mountains, in the National Park and around town.

Samhradh's Sauna at Dundag was very popular with locals and visitors alike, giving everyone a unique experience at the popular swim spot. The varied kids programme proved very popular and younger kids really enjoyed the Kids Zone.

"We are thrilled with how everything went," Pat Chawke, Chairperson of the Wander Wild Festival organising committee, said.

"The town and the National Park were buzzing all weekend. The feedback from those who took part has been incredibly positive, from locals who rediscovered what the National Park has to offer, to visitors who were blown away by the beauty and the amenities. Seeing people embrace nature and enjoy new and sometimes challenging events was really encouraging. There were some real standout moments such as the sunrise dips, the Wim Hof Workshops, The Garden of Unearthly delights at the Blue Pool, the foodie tour, and Mundy's outstanding performance in St Mary's Church of Ireland, to name but a few.

He said he'd like to thank the committee who gave so much of their time for free over the last few months to put the festival together.

"Without their dedication there wouldn't be a festival. We are indebted to our sponsors and local activity providers for working so closely with us to provide unique memorable experience for people. And of course, to our supporters, whose assistance is vital - the NPWS, Nature Valley, Fáilte Ireland, Killarney Chamber of Commerce and Kerry County Council. We are already planning for next year with plans to grow it even bigger."

Put March 22-24 in your diary for Wander Wild Festival 2024!

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Seven An Post staff retire

Seven well-known staff members at An Post Killarney celebrated retirement this week. The staff, Mary O’Sullivan, Joe Clifford, Paudie Cronin, Joe Coffey, Tom Ashe, Jerry McCarthy and Dan Murphy were […]

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Seven well-known staff members at An Post Killarney celebrated retirement this week.

The staff, Mary O’Sullivan, Joe Clifford, Paudie Cronin, Joe Coffey, Tom Ashe, Jerry McCarthy and Dan Murphy were treated to an night of celebration and reminiscing by the South Kerry branch of the Communication Workers Union of Ireland.

The retirees, their families and colleagues enjoyed an evening at ‘The Panoramic’ the newly named restaurant upstairs at Killarney Racecourse.

Ollie Favier, of the Shire fame has taken over responsibility for operating the coffee shop / restaurant at the racecourse.

“A beautiful venue and apt that Ollie’s father Dan RIP from Glenflesk, was also a long serving postman in the community,” said John O’Shea, the Union Secretary An Post Killarney.

“The night included music with Derry Healy and Rosie Healy and was attended by up to 80 people, under the attentive guidance of Sales and Marketing Manager Emma O’Connor and Ollie’s right hand man, Colin Daly

“The event the food and the atmosphere was a great success and credit to all Ollie’s staff for being great hosts. “

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Watch Video: Primary School Students share knowledge from Coffee Cup Project

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Killarney primary schools have joined the crusade against single use coffee cups this week by joining the Killarney Coffee Cup Project and declaring themselves single use coffee cup free. The Killarney Coffee Project is a community grassroots project aimed at eliminating single use coffee cups from Killarney town centre to protect Killarney National Park and the towns surroundings all in the name of conservation.

Alan Oliver, a local coffee shop owner, Lir Café, who is one of the participants of the project has said that he is “thrilled to see the project extend into the local schools. Teaching young people about why we should be moving away from a throw away culture is imperative to the continuous success of projects like this. Today’s young people are the future custodians of this town and so educating them on the importance of sustainability will ensure that Killarney and its National Park will be in safe hands for future generations.”

The schools involved in declaring themselves single use coffee cup free include Holycross Mercy, Gaelscoil Faithleann, Presentation Monastery, Glenflesk, Knocknanes, Coolick, Loreto, Lissivigeen and Tiernaboul. This follows on from the Killarney Coffee Cup Primary Schools Initiative which took place last November supported by Killarney Credit Union, the Kerry Biosphere, and the IKC3 project in MTU.

In November the 5th classes in the Killarney area were brought to Muckross School House and Killarney House for a 2-hour immersive environmental education experience around our connection to the Kerry Biosphere and citizen climate action. Here the students learned about our biosphere and how we as citizens and sustainable initiatives like the Killarney Coffee Cup Project can protect this Special Area of Conservation. Finally, they went outside to work with a park ranger, collecting acorns in leftover disposable compostable cups that the project had gathered from various businesses. They took these acorns back to their classrooms where they have planted and are caring for their oak tree. In 2024, these young oak tree seedlings will be planted back into the National Park.

The Killarney Coffee Cup Project is the 1st of its kind in the world, and it is something that belongs to all the citizens of the town. We all own this!

Want to hear from the future voices of our environment?

This week the Killarney Advertiser caught up with primary schoolers who have been busy learning all about protecting our amazing natural environment

Watch our video where the future eco-warriors share what they’ve learned about keeping our Killarney healthy and thriving! Here is to the next generation of environmental stewards!

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