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Win a racehorse and help injured jockeys



WIN THIS HORSE: Kieran Looney and Gavin Nolan with 'True Dreamer' - a 50 percent ownership in the racehorse is up for grabs while at the same time helping injured jockeys.



By Sean Moriarty

Internet competitions for high-end products have been all the rage for the last year, and even more so during the lockdown, but two Killarney men have come up with a different take on the popular schemes.

Instead of winning a high-performance car or a camper van, the usual fare on offer in such competitions, subscribers to this one can win a 50 percent share in a racehorse.

As an added bonus, a portion of the raffle’s takings will be given to charities that supports injured jockeys in Ireland and Britain.

Horse Racing Buddy Club was founded by Killarney-based horse racing fans Gavin Nolan and Kieran Looney.

The club was originally set up to allow several horse racing fans come together to own a race horse – syndicates are limited to 20 persons but clubs can have unlimited membership – and can arrange visits to famous training stables.

The club’s plans for the year were disrupted as a result of pandemic related restrictions but they also wanted to do something to help injured jockeys.

They have organised an online competition via their website

Punters can enter the competition for €50. The prize is 50 percent ownership in a racehorse called 'True Dreamer', and a large portion of each entry goes towards either the Injured Jockey Fund in the UK or the Irish Jockey Fund.

“We must be the unluckiest horse racing club ever – we just got off the ground when the shutdown came into force,” Glenflesk man Kieran Looney told the Killarney Advertiser. “But we knew we needed to do something to help the jockey funds that were also suffering as their main event did not happen either. We came up with this idea and so far nearly 60 tickets have been sold.”

They hope to run 'True Dreamer' at Mallow on July 5 but, as demand for entries to all events are now at a premium, their entry is subject to a ballot.

“That is the plan, but if the ballot goes against us we will get a higher place for the next ballot so we placed the entry anyway,” added Looney.



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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