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Popular ‘Swim for a Mile’ programme is back




Kerry Recreation & Sports Partnership (KRSP) in collaboration with Swim Ireland, Healthy Ireland, and three public swimming pools in Kerry, are offering a unique coaching programme for adults.
The 12 week ‘Swim for a Mile’ programme commences the week beginning February 4. The aim is to swim a mile and participate in a fun and social themed ‘Swim for a Mile’ challenge at the end of April.

Killarney Sports & Leisure Centre, Tralee Regional Sports Complex and Ballybunion Health & Leisure Centre, are facilitating a 12-week coached training programme for interested participants.

Participants will need to sign up to the event by week five to continue with the coaching programme. In Kerry, there will be three locations facilitating the ‘Swim for a Mile’ challenge event – Killarney on April 26, Ballybunion on April 27, and in Tralee on April 28.
“Our programme is open to all abilities especially newcomers to swimming,” Martina Lawless, Programme Facilitator, said.
“The one requirement is to be able to swim two consecutive pool lengths. All pools are offering morning, evening and weekend sessions to tie in with busy lifestyles.”

And if you’re unsure if you can swim a mile, this year they have introduced taster sessions where the poolside coaches can offer guidance and advice. For Killarney sessions, call the centre on 064 6636555 and book a time that suits you.
“Kerry offers the unique opportunity of coached training with the support of qualified coaches and fellow swimmers as opposed to downloading the training programme from the ‘Swim for a Mile’ website and doing it on your own.
“A past participant said she went from struggling for every length to being comfortable and confident. The encouragement from the instructors was invaluable and there was great comradery within the training group.”

In order to take part, all participants will need to register for both the 12 week coaching programme on and also register for the event on The cost is €50/€40 for the coaching programme and €30 for the event.



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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