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Youth Theatre Grant Scheme open for applications

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Kerry Local Creative Youth Partnership (LCYP) at Kerry ETB has announced a fund to support the development of youth theatres across the county.

Applications from not-for-profit organisations are welcome by close of business on January 11. Funding youth theatre development is a priority for the offices of the Local Creative Youth Partnership at Kerry ETB and the Arts Office at Kerry County Council in 2023.

The fund has come about as a result of a partnership between the LCYP and the Arts Office at Kerry County Council. This partnership is aimed at increasing the number of youth theatres active in the county by underpinning their development with funding and know-how.

“This year LCYP and the Arts Office at Kerry County Council supported the development of three youth theatres in Kerry, one in South Kerry, one in West Kerry and one in North Kerry to the value of €22,000 in total,” Deirdre Enright, the Creative Youth Co-Ordinator at Kerry ETB, said.

“The fund supports the administration, management and the creative facilitation costs for each youth theatre, and encourages youth theatres to be ambitious and exciting to teenagers. Supported youth theatres must ensure diversity and that there is a strong sense of inclusion for their members.”

Youth Theatre is a proven youth work discipline and an exciting creative space for young people to join. The mission in Kerry is to ensure an accessible youth theatre is available to any young person who wants to join one, and that the nearest youth theatre is no more than a 45 minute drive from anyone’s home, no matter where in Kerry a person lives.

“We are delighted that over 30 young people from all sorts of backgrounds have found a great sense of belonging in local youth theatres this year. It is a highly creative space, and not just for those who love acting…writing, sound, production, costume, all of these are aspects but even more important is the time and friendships that young people get to enjoy outside of the formal school environment," Kate Kennelly, Arts Office and Creative Ireland Kerry Co-Ordinator at Kerry County Council, said.

Kerry’s strategy is unique in Ireland and supporting its delivery is Youth Theatre Ireland, the national support agency for youth theatre in the country.

“Youth Theatre Ireland has worked closely with LCYP and Kerry County Council over several years to support the training and development of local youth theatre facilitators. Having skilled, local facilitators in place is the lifeblood of sustainable youth theatre practice and to have this level of financial support in place is crucial for their long-term success. When a young person joins a youth theatre they have access to quality arts experiences within their own community. This can be life changing. We look forward to our continued collaboration to support a sustainable youth theatre culture in Co. Kerry,” Alan King, Deputy Director at Youth Theatre Ireland, added.

Youth Theatres who wish to apply must be not-for-profit and rooted in a local community setting. For more information and an application form see www.kerryetb.ie/creativity-grants.

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Roger and Brendan really into the SWING of things

A Killarney man who has been living in the US for over 30 years has maintained a very strong connection with his hometown through a novel golfing tournament which involves […]

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A Killarney man who has been living in the US for over 30 years has maintained a very strong connection with his hometown through a novel golfing tournament which involves a regular challenge against local players.

Roger O’Sullivan, originally from Loreto Road and a member of the Rainier Golf and Country Club in Seattle, has linked up with another Killarney man, Brendan Keogh of SWING Golf, on several occasions to bring a group of golfers from the Seattle club to play a number of Kerry and Irish courses.

They compete for the Cider Cup which is their own unique take on the Ryder Cup.

In 2010 Roger led a group of 18 golfers from the US to play in Ireland and they repeated the journey and the adventure again in 2012, 2014 and 2017.

They had another trip planned in 2020 but that was cancelled due to Covid but they returned again in 2022 and a group of 44 golfers were back in Killarney in recent weeks to test their skills on the Kerry courses and against local players.

“Since we first started doing this in 2010 we have had 102 different golfers travel from Seattle,” Roger explained.
“I met Brendan Keogh on one of my visits home and he travelled to Seattle, at my request, and organised sponsorship at my golf club.

“Since then our trips have been expertly organised by SWING Golf who book us preferential tee-times, set up the schedule and coordinate our bus drivers. We have never had an issue or anything to worry about. Being friendly with Maurice O’Donoghue, we have always stayed at Scott’s Hotel,” he added.

The US visitors take on local players when in Killarney and this year there was 100 golfers playing on the Killeen course on the first day of their visit.

“The support of the locals has been incredible and I wouldn’t do this without them,” said Roger.
“There have been numerous friendships made over the last 14 years. We have supported a local charity on every trip and for the last two it has been the palliative care unit at University Hospital Kerry. This year we raised €5,100,” he said.

A former student at St Brendan’s College, Roger’s parents were Tony and Juliette O’Sullivan and his father was the head chef in the Gleneagle Hotel for over 20 years before the family purchased Danesfort Lodge at Woodlawn Cross on the Muckross Road.

Roger has been married for 20 years to Amy from Tampa, Florida and they have one daughter, Gracie.
Brendan Keogh joined SWING in the early days of its operation as financial operations manager, working alongside the late Paddy O’Looney.

A member of Killarney Golf and Fishing Club for 40 years, he is the current CEO and he will have served 33 years next September.

SWING, the brainchild of former Kerry Group chief, Denis Brosnan, markets and promotes the premier golf clubs in the south west and also runs an incoming golf agency.

Records show that the company has booked over 350,000 rounds of golf in the south west alone but it also facilitates golfers wanting to play elsewhere in the country.

The company’s senior team of Brendan, Eileen O’Sullivan and Tommy Pierce have 60 years of experience bringing golfers to these shores.

Killarney has been a huge beneficiary as it is a base for most visiting golfers while on the Kerry part of their trip. The locals like seeing the high spending golfers arrive in April for a season than runs until mid October.
2024 is busy and it is also looking positive for 2025.

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Killarney Toastmasters Celebrates 20 Years

Killarney Toastmasters Celebrates 20 Years

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Over 30 members, past and present, gathered last Tuesday in The Dromhall Hotel to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the founding of Killarney Toastmasters club.

Several founder members were present including Frank O’Sullivan and Bernadette Noonan, who are still current members of the club.
Members embrace the core values of Toastmasters International which are “respect, integrity, service and excellence”.
This year Killarney Toastmasters welcomed eight new members of various nationalities, who have brought many talents with them to this international club.
Outgoing president Anthony Walsh said: “I am heartened by the progress of new members and, following the success of the current year, I am looking forward to a bright future for the club.”
Anthony passed the chain of office on to incoming President Ann Hannan, who is very excited about leading the club in the year that Toastmasters International celebrates its 100th Anniversary.

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