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Lissivigeen pupils have the “write stuff”

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Lissivigeen National School pupils enjoyed a creative treat last Friday when they were visited by children's author Olivia Hope for a series of writing workshops to help inspire them.

Fourth, Fifth and Sixth classes participated in activities around character creation, story development and storyboarding, all in keeping with the Irish folklore tradition and featuring spooky púcas and local landscape.

Olivia also gave them an insight into her own storytelling journey and how the Killarney author came to be with the same publisher as JK Rowling. She spoke with enthusiasm about finding story ideas and inspiration all around her.

Olivia said that she prefers to show children how to make stories, not just write them down, by highlighting the importance of children being able to tell their stories in a variety of ways, not just writing, but also through drawing, film, song and any art form that appealed to them. She says that we are encouraging pupils to be writers, film-makers, animators and artists, because, as she reminded them, "It’s your story, so you have to tell it in your own unique way".

Olivia, who currently works at Siamsa Tíre as a creative learning assistant, also gave pupils a behind-the-scenes insight into how she came to write the Samhain folklore tale for the highly anticipated art exhibition for children at Siamsa Tíre, 'A Way Home/Slí Abhaile'. Her visit also included a sneak preview of some of the art that will be displayed as part of the exhibition which launched yesterday (Thursday).

The classes and their teachers certainly have a story or two to tell after Olivia Hope’s visit.

Olivia Hope’s debut 'Be wild, Little One', illustrated by Daniel Egneus, will be published by Bloomsbury on May 12, 2022, and is available for pre-order in all bookshops.

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Kerry base confirmed for Rás Mumhan

By Sean Moriarty Preliminary details of the Rás Mumhan have been announced by Cycling Munster. The four-day international cycle race will, once again, be based at the Riverisland Hotel in […]

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By Sean Moriarty

Preliminary details of the Rás Mumhan have been announced by Cycling Munster.

The four-day international cycle race will, once again, be based at the Riverisland Hotel in Castleisland and will run from Good Friday until Easter Monday.

The final route has not yet been revealed but it is expected to follow a similar path to the 2022 edition.

Last year, due to organisational difficulties, the Rás Mumhan committee asked local clubs to take charge of each day of the race.

Killarney Cycling Club hosted the Easter Saturday leg of the race, including managing the stage start in the town centre, the Category One mountain climb at Bealach Oisin Pass and the stage finish in Sneem.

“We are looking forward to seeing everyone at Easter and we wish all the riders the best of luck in their preparations for the event. Further details to follow as they are confirmed,” said Race Secretary Sinéad Moriarty.

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Showcasing Killarney to an influential audience

Kerry’s hospitality professionals turned out in style for the Skal President’s Dinner on Saturday night. It’s the social highlight of the year for professional tourism and travel organisations and it […]

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Kerry’s hospitality professionals turned out in style for the Skal President’s Dinner on Saturday night.

It’s the social highlight of the year for professional tourism and travel organisations and it was also a perfect opportunity to show the best of Killarney. Held in the Plaza Hotel, it was hosted by Kerry Skal President Michelle Rosney who used the occasion to highlight the best of Killarney’s performing arts talent, cuisine and locally produced drinks. There were special performances on the night by singers and dancers from St Brigid’s Presentation Secondary School and the West End House School of Arts who brought The Liberator, Daniel O’Connell, back to life for one night only to deliver a passionate dramatisation of a famous speech. Skal is the largest international hospitality networking organisation in the world with 13,000 members in 308 clubs in almost 90 countries. Fáilte Ireland Chairman Paul Carty said in his speech that the contribution Killarney has made to the Irish tourism industry should not be underestimated. He added that the tourism industry supports over 3,500 jobs in Killarney and over 7,000 in the rest of Kerry. He said the hard work put in by tourism professionals in Killarney over the years is paying off and when Fáilte Ireland surveyed hundreds of domestic and international tourists, at the height of the season last August, they couldn’t speak highly enough of their experience with 97 percent saying they were very satisfied. “The national figure is 90 percent so Killarney is actually seven percent higher than the national average and that’s truly exceptional,” he said. Over 55 percent of visitors to Killarney also spend time in other parts of Kerry and towns, like Dingle, Kenmare and Tralee, and really benefit from the spin-off.

INDUSTRY CHALLENGES

The Fáilte Ireland chairman said his organisation is acutely aware what Killarney has faced in recent years and the challenges it currently faces and every support possible will be provided to help.

Mr Carty said Fáilte Ireland last year launched a destination experience and development plan for Killarney and that will see the town reach its full potential through sustainability and the development of year-round tourist attractions.

He said costs were also a big concern with energy bills, in particular, going through the roof and putting businesses under serious pressure.

Staffing was another serious problem for the industry as so much talent was lost during the pandemic.

“An awful lot of great people left our industry and they’re not coming back, so there is a great shortage,” he said, adding that Fáilte Ireland was working hard to overcome the difficulties being experienced.

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