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South Kerry proves to be a star attraction

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Nocturnal view during August Perseid looking southwest over McCarthy's Castle and Horse Island Ballinskelligs Beach, the only designated gold-tier International Dark-Sky Reserve in the Northern Hemisphere. PICTURE: DON MACMONAGLE

THE tourism Unit in Kerry County Council and the Destination Kerry Tourism Forum, together with The Skellig Centre for Research & Innovation, and University College Cork presented ‘An Introduction to Astronomy’ weekend course in The Royal Hotel, Valentia Island, last weekend.

This UCC-accredited course was delivered by Professor Paul Callanan of UCC and Dr Michael Connolly, Kerry County Archaeologist. It provided the 28 participants with a working knowledge of the night sky to enable them to develop the business potential of stargazing and expand their skill base to provide an enhanced experience for visitors.

This is the second astronomy course presented by UCC in the Kerry International Dark Sky Reserve – an area of approximately 700 square kilometres and one of only three designated gold-tier dark sky reserves on the planet. The skies played their part over the weekend, with an amazing number of stars visible to the participants.

Stargazing is becoming an increasingly popular pastime and astrotourism is a growing niche area within international tourism. This affords Kerry a great opportunity to attract new visitors, especially over the winter months. The County Kerry Tourism Strategy and Action Plan 2016-2022 and the Skellig Coast Visitor Experience Development Plan have identified this niche market and both contain several actions to support and develop an astrotourism product for the South Kerry area.

Some very excited pupils in Scoil Náisiunta Derarca in Chapeltown on Valentia Island were given a wonderful surprise on Friday afternoon when Professor Paul Callanan of UCC dropped in to give them an astronomy presentation. Children from first to sixth class all listened intently as Paul brought them around our solar system and beyond and Valentia has many budding astronomers after the event.
 


 
Above: Nocturnal view during August Perseid looking southwest over McCarthy’s Castle and Horse Island Ballinskelligs Beach, the only designated gold-tier International Dark-Sky Reserve in the Northern Hemisphere. PICTURE: DON MACMONAGLE

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Pharmacy jabs begin today

By Michelle Crean  Pharmacists across Kerry – including four in Killarney – are ready to begin giving the Johnson and Johnson Janssen jabs to the over 50s as the latest stage of the vaccine rollout. Kennellys Pharmacy at The Reeks Gateway, Park Road Care Plus on Countess Road, Boots Deerpark Shopping Centre, and Sheahans Pharmacy […]

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By Michelle Crean
 

Pharmacists across Kerry – including four in Killarney – are ready to begin giving the Johnson and Johnson Janssen jabs to the over 50s as the latest stage of the vaccine rollout.

Kennellys Pharmacy at The Reeks Gateway, Park Road Care Plus on Countess Road, Boots Deerpark Shopping Centre, and Sheahans Pharmacy on Main Street will be booking people in groups as each vile lasts just a number hours once opened.

Staff at Kennellys Pharmacy at The Reeks are ready to welcome in their first vaccine participants today (Friday). Each had pre-booked their slot, according to Dispensary Manager Christina O’Grady.

“We are starting today for the over 50s only with the Janssen Johnson and Johnson one dose jab,” she told the Killarney Advertiser.

She said that they have been busy in the pharmacy all week booking people in, however for now, depending on demand and supply available, they’ll be vaccinating people two days a week.

“We’re taking a list of people. It’ll probably be only two mornings a week – it all depends on the uptake.”

Pharmacist Finbarr Kennelly said it’s a great way to give a vaccine to those who may have missed theirs.

“It’s an opportunity for the over 50s who have missed their vaccine for whatever reason. The advantage is that it’s a one shot vaccine.”

Anyone who’d like to book in for their vaccine can call Kennellys on 064 6639427.

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Killarney Advertiser – Weekly Jobs Round-Up

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See a job you like? Click the link and apply in seconds.

The Ross – Various Roles 

Killeen House Hotel – Various Roles

Earls Court House Hotel – Various Roles

O’Sheas Fruit & Veg – Various Roles

Castlerosse Park Resort – Various Roles

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€500k to help re-start Killarney’s live music scene

By Sean Moriarty A number of Killarney venues were elated this week to learn that funding to the tune of €500k has been announced to help re-start the town’s live music scene. Of the €1,001,944 in funding announced this week for the county Killarney is to receive over half with funds to assist the Gleneagle […]

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By Sean Moriarty

A number of Killarney venues were elated this week to learn that funding to the tune of €500k has been announced to help re-start the town’s live music scene.

Of the €1,001,944 in funding announced this week for the county Killarney is to receive over half with funds to assist the Gleneagle Hotel Killarney/INEC Arena, Celtic Steps The Show, Scott’s Hotel, and Courtney’s Bar.

The funding, announced by Minister for Education and Kerry TD Norma Foley on Tuesday, is in place to assist commercial venues, producers and promoters in Kerry to plan live events over the summer months.

The scheme, managed by the Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media will support live performances, particularly where capacity for live attendance is restricted due to COVID-19.

The funding will make live performances viable or alternatively make them available online if audiences cannot attend due to restrictions.

“I welcome this funding which will provide an enormous boost to the live entertainment industry in Kerry,” Minister Foley said.

“This money will help to facilitate the delivery of exciting programmes of activities over the coming summer and autumn period. This funding will also provide a vital lift to those talented performers, artists, technicians, creative and performance support staff across the sector, who have not been able to work due to the pandemic.”

Four venues and promoters in Killarney will receive a total of €560,646 in grant aid to help re-start the live music and performing arts industries in the town after months of lockdown.

REACTION

The Gleneagle Hotel Killarney/INEC Arena will receive €380,822 for live music shows and for the pre-recording of live material from acts of the future.

“We are delighted with this week’s announcement on funding,” Mark Egan, Director of the Gleneagle INEC Arena told the Killarney Advertiser. “We can now look ahead to implementing a programme of events that will provide employment for performers, artists, technicians and support staff many of whom have not had work for months. We have a fantastic, diverse programme in the pipeline and we can’t wait to get the various artists, crews and event suppliers back on site and back to the work we all love. We thank Minister Catherine Martin and the Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media for making this grant available.”

Celtic Steps The Show will receive €84,627 to allow it livestream performances from its Killarney Racecourse Theatre.

For Celtic Steps producer/director David Rae the funding presents more than just an opportunity to get the show back on the road. He will create 43 paid positions from dancers and musicians to sound and lighting engineers and even a COVID-19 Compliance Officer.

He is awaiting further guidance on permission to allow a limited audience attend a Celtic Steps performance but he hopes by early July to have a series of online performances up and running.

“This is what it is all about, getting these people back to work after so long being unemployed,” he told the Killarney Advertiser. “I will need all of these people, from two days before I start to two days after, it is almost like building a festival from scratch and we can’t thank the minister and department enough for this chance.”

Scott’s Hotel will receive the same figure as Celtic Steps for live performances for tourists across the summer.

Courtney’s Bar on Plunkett St will receive €10,570 for a number of gigs that will feature local musicians.

“This is fantastic news,” manager Brian Murphy said. “We have been associated with live music in Killarney for a long time so we are delighted to get the funding and allow live music to continue.”

Like Celtic Steps, he is still waiting for confirmation on the format of the funded gigs.

“It is hard to see a bar gig with an audience going ahead but one of the stipulations of the grant is that if we cannot do a live gig under current guidelines, we have to do it online.”

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