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Over 400 people attend motor club charity event




Over 400 people attended a special event in Killarney Racecourse on Saturday evening to raise funds for the Jack and Jill Foundation.


Champion Rally Driver Mickie Galvin member of Killarney District and Motor Club at the Prodrive celebration charity night at the Killarney Racecourse. . Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan

Local rally drivers and co-drivers Robert Duggan Martin O'Riordan Joe O'Leary Noel O'Sullivan abd Mikie Galvin at the Prodrive celebration charity night at Killarney Racecourse.Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan

Members of Killarney District and Motor Club at the Prodrive celebration charity night at the Killarney Racecourse. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan

Stalwarts Pat Healy left and Pat O'Sullivan members of Killarney District and Motor Club at the Prodrive celebration charity night at the Killarney Racecourse. All proceeds were donated to the Jack and Jill Foundation which provides support and special care to children across the country. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan

Organised by Killarney and District Motor Club’s new youth forum called KDMC2, the night celebrated Prodrive’s connection with the Rally of the Lakes.

A selection of the British firm's cars including several Rally of the Lakes event-winning Subarus and BMWs were on display outside Killarney Racecourse all day Saturday ahead of a question and answers session with star drivers on the main stage later that evening.

Stars included 2003 World Rally Championship-winning co-driver Phil Mills who spoke about his early career and his first visit to Killarney 40 years ago.

Under the watchful eye of MC Alan ‘Plum’ Tyndal, the voice of the famous RPM Motorsport television programmes, other drivers like Kenny McKinstry, Eugene Donnelly, Gary Jennings, Denis Cronin, and Alastair Fisher shared their stories of their times in Killarney.

Former WRC co-driver and local man Paul Nagle spoke about his early memories of Prodrive cars competing in Killarney and recalled how the late Bertie Fisher recorded the first sub-ten minute time on Moll’s Gap in a Prodrive-built Subaru in the mid-1990s.
Siobhan Reen, the local Jack and Jill Foundation nurse, spoke about the great work that organisation does too.

The night was not all about the past either, KDMC2 is all about fostering youth within the club and several newcomers gave an insight into the future of the sport.

They included club member Meabh Griffin, better known for her volunteer work within the club, who has recently taken up co-driving and Galway’s Aoife Raftery, who is a member of the Motorsport Ireland Rally Academy and the first Irish woman to commit to the FIA European Rally Championship since Rosemary Smith 50 years ago.

“What a fantastic night with a huge crowd turning up in the end to see some of the most valuable and spectacular Prodrive Subaru and BMW WRC and Group A rally cars in the world,” said Killarney and District Motor Club’s chairman Thomas Randles.

“We must congratulate our club vice chairman Mike O’Shea and all the KDMC members involved but especially Mike for the massive effort he put into getting all these drivers and cars down to Killarney this weekend. It was an extraordinary achievement and it will be hard to match but I know in KDMC it will happen again.The positive feedback is brilliant for our club.”



Carols by Candlelight

    St. Mary’s Cathedral, will be filled with music and glowing candles, as choirs from all over Killarney Parish gather for a community of voices together to celebrate Christmas […]






St. Mary’s Cathedral, will be filled with music and glowing candles, as choirs from all over Killarney Parish gather for a community of voices together to celebrate Christmas 2023, December17, at 7.00pm. Admission is free.

Ten Choirs from Killarney parish will join together and sing some of the world’s most beloved Christmas carols.
The carol service is directed by accomplished Musician and Choral Director, Paula Gleeson. Originally from Cork, her family have been involved in all aspects of choral and church music for 50 years.

“This is the best experience as director, working with Fr. Kieran O’Brien, and St. Mary’s Cathedral Choir, I get to work with so many talented people in Killarney. The commitment of Teachers, Principals, and the hundreds of students from the Primary and Secondary Schools is inspiring. The generosity of our sponsors, who were so willing to contribute has helped to make this night a reality. We are all so truly grateful,” she said.

Choirs include:
St. Mary’s Cathedral Parish Choir, organist Anita Lakner
Holy Cross Mercy School Choir
St. Oliver’s Primary School Choir
St. Brigid’s Secondary School Choir
St. Brendan’s Secondary School Choir
Killarney Harmonisers
Killarney Community College School Choir
Lissivigeen National School Choir
Gaelscoil Faithleann School Choir
Presentation Monastery School Choir

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The same but different – A tribute to three great Irish musicians



Driving home from work last Friday, tributes for Shane McGowan were pouring out across the radio stations and while listening in, I got a strong sense of déjà vu.

It was only a few months earlier that we got the sad news that the talented Aslan front man Christy Dingham had passed away, and a short few weeks after that – Sinéad O’Connor.  The loss of three iconic Irish musicians that left music fans across the country reeling.

When I think about each artist individually, their personalities couldn’t be more different. Yet, for days after the passing of the Pogues frontman, I found myself wondering why I was so drawn to all three.

And then, over the weekend I stumbled across a completely unrelated article which led with a headline:

“In a year dominated by artificial intelligence, deepfakes, and disingenuity, “authentic” has somehow emerged as Merriam-Webster’s word for 2023.”

And there was my answer. The one characteristic that embodied all three of these great Irish musicians.

It was my mother that first introduced me to Aslan’s music. She grew up during their peak and loved all sorts of rock music. I regularly watch their Vicar Street performances back on YouTube and still get mesmerised by Christy’s intense stage presence. Using elaborate hand gestures to evoke a greater meaning behind the words, he always looked like he was away in his own world. Off stage, and particularly later in his career, I admired him for his honesty when talking about his struggles with addiction and mental health. He was talking openly about these issues long before it was the norm.

Sinéad O’Connor was another original soul who, because of her talent, was catapulted into a music industry consumed by artificiality; she was almost too pure for it all. I always admired her unwavering commitment to her beliefs. Her authenticity was evident in every aspect of her artistry. The way she unapologetically embraced her shaved head and boy-ish style, she challenged conventional opinions around beauty. Her music reflected her personal struggles and she never shied away from addressing issues of social injustice, religion, and gender equality. Her stances often drew criticism and controversy, but she always remained true to herself.

Shane MacGowan will always be remembered for his unfiltered nature, and while the lyrics of many songs were dark and gritty, there was also an element of empathy and compassion in what he wrote. Like Christy, he too struggled with addiction and mental health issues throughout his career. While his demons sometimes spilled over into the public eye, his honesty and vulnerability just endeared him even more to us Irish.

So isn’t it apt in a year we lost three great musicians, the word of 2023 happens to be the one undeniable trait that they all shared. Thank you Christy, Sinead and Shane for showing us that authenticity is not just about being different to everyone else; but also about possessing the courage to challenge the established, to question the norms, and to keep going, even when the going gets tough.


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