Tuesday, 6 October 2015

Ballybunion,Weather and a few more for Ladies Day 2015

Beautiful Ballybunion Dawn

Mike Enright is a fisherman and is often out to enjoy the sun rise or set in Ballybunion. He took this stunning photo early in the morning of September 27 2015. The photo is not in any way enhanced. All the enhancement is Nature's own.


McCarron Family Celebration

John Kelliher photographed the McCarron Family who have contributed so much to Listowel life as they gathered to celebrate their parents' 50th wedding anniversary.


Stylish Ladies in Listowel 2015

I hope I have not posted some of these before as I'm trying not to become a kind of fashion blogger so I'm spreading the ladies' photos out a bit. Believe it or not, I still have more so forgive any errors and omissions.

Orla O'Connor's very stylish shoes which match her outfit (below right) perfectly.

I think this is called a statement piece. What a bag!


Always take the weather with you

If you thought 2015 was a wet summer, you should cast your mind back to 1958. The below report of that summer's weather comes from Bord na Mona Heartland

Thankfully the following year had an exceptionally dry summer. Let's hope history repeats itself.


Found on Facebook

A very young Jerry Hannon ( 15, he tells me, but he looks younger) learning the tricks of the trade from his hero and mentor, the great racing commentator, Des Scahill, the voice of Irish racing for over 40 years.


Look who I met in town yesterday

I bumped into Mary O'Flaherty and Denis Keane chatting in Main Street and they kindly posed for me.

Monday, 5 October 2015

Straw Boys, John Relihan and more from Listowel Races 2015

Ballyduff Farmer in The Farmers' Journal

John O'Regan, Dairy and Tillage Farmer, Ardoughtar Cross, Ballyduff, Co Kerry celebrating National Potato Day            Photo:Valerie O'Sullivan

Strawing In

This photograph of straw boys in Milstreet, Co. Cork was posted on Facebook by Tom Healy.

I googled straw boys and this is what I found.

"Whenever they started, the Straw Boys seem to have survived in modern Irish life – at least in the western counties of Ireland where they almost certainly originated. They’re most often described as an exceptionally odd bunch of party crashers – young men who appear suddenly at a wedding, possibly uninvited, and dance with the bride and groom before departing as swiftly as they arrived. The only thing thats consistent in all the stories about them is the way they conceal their identities behind stylized hats made of straw.
Still Dancing
Many present-day accounts say that the Straw Boys still appear at weddings from the Achill Island area (northwest county Mayo) on down through the middle west. They’re familiar enough, in fact, that some wedding planners offer Straw Boys as a feature you can choose, along with champagne and chocolate cake, from the standard event menu. For about $250, you can apparently have a group of 4-5 of these fellows enter the dinner room, accompanied by a fiddle, dance around the tables for a few minutes, and then lift the bride from her chair and carry her out to the dance floor to begin the “Ceili.”
According to Jane Fitzgerald, speaking on a wedding website, “they were boys who rustled cattle. After the job, theyd avoid capture by dressing in straw hats and sneaking into a wedding. Theyd drink and dance but never talk. Eventually they got to be a sign of good luck. Its called strawing a wedding. Another wedding planner advertizes Straw Boys who dance around the bride and groom to protect them from evil spirits. But many traditional accounts say the boys don’t appear at the wedding at all, but at the brides house before the wedding. Several other writers say that in olden days, weddings were usually for family members only, and that the Straw Boys led a delegation of friends into the town square to welcome the bride and groom home from their honeymoon."

My memory of straw boys is not of this hired entertainment but of local lads who came to the house of the newly married couple when they returned from their honeymoon and demanded a party. They were usually half expected and the singing and dancing went on all night.


Coming to a Screen near You

Look out for John Relihan from Duagh  cooking up a storm with Jamie Oliver on Top Secret BBQ. Coming to our TVs in January…..especially for those who love meat!


More from Ladies Day 2015


Book Recommendation for You

Jason of Ballybunion Prints took this photo of Mike Flahive at his  beloved Bromore Cliffs.

Mike is one of the contributors to this book of 50 stories of growing up and living in rural Ireland. The book was launched at The Ploughing Championships 2015.

Friday, 2 October 2015

People at the Aras Mhuire concert, Ballybunion Sept 25 2015, Fleadh committee 2001 and more from 1961

At The Tinteán Sept 25 2015


Ballybunion Team from The Advertiser


Another view of Upper William St., Listowel


From a 2001 Fleadh programme


Listowel Vocational School trip to Killarney in 1961 continued

On the right is Patsy O'Sullivan and beside him is Dick Fitzgerald

This student is a bit of a mystery. Maureen remembers him as Bertie but that's all.

This photo was taken in Tralee on the way to Killarney.  We need a bit of help here to identify the girl on the far left and the girl standing a little in front of the others second from right. The other girls are Eileen Buckley, 4th Rita Finucane-Moyvane, 5th  Maura O Sullivan-Ballylongford, 6th ?, 7. Kathleen Buckley-Keylod,Moyvane.

4 girls with bus behind them at Ladies View, Eileen Buckley (don't know from where), Maura O'Sullivan from Lenamore, Ballylongford, Maureen Barrett, Ballylongford(me) and Kathleen Buckley-Keylod, Moyvane

Thursday, 1 October 2015

Dursley Male Voice Choir 2015 in The Tinteán and Vocational School trip to Killarney in 1961

Photo from Kanturk based photographer  Janusz Yrzsecki


A Great Night in The Tinteán on September 25 2015

North Kerry people came out in numbers to support the great fundraising concert for Listowel Rugby Club Development Squad and Áras Mhuire Nursing Home. We were treated to a superb night of entertainment by the Dursley Male Voice Choir, Colm O'Brien and Eoin Hand. A highlight of the night was the singing of local boy soprano, Mark Hennessy. Seán Lyons was our witty, relaxed M.C.


Snapped in The Square on the Saturday of the Races


Listowel Vocational School Trip to Killarney in 1961

Maureen Barrett, formerly of Ballylongford is a loyal follower of Listowel Connection. She sent me these great old photos of a school trip she took to Killarney in 1961. She borrowed a camera and she made good use of it to record a very enjoyable day out. The photos are particularly good quality and my friend, Jos. only had to do a little work to make them really outstanding. Maureen remembers most of the names too  so I'm sure they will bring back a few memories.

Kathleen Buckley and Rita Finucane with one of Killarney's lakes in the background.

Rita and Kathleen again with Maureen herself in the middle

Front row-Ann Beazley-Listowel, Margaret Walsh (I think Tullamore)  Kathleen Buckley, Maura O'Sullivan, Rita Finucane, the girl peeking out at the back is  Margaret O'Connor .