By Tom Aherne

The death has taken place of Bridget Doody, 2 Corgrigg Wood, Foynes, on February 28,  at University Hospital Limerick. Bridget was the eldest daughter of Mary and Joe Doody, and  a native of Glensharrold, Carrigkerry, and her early education was in Kilcolman National School. The family moved to  Mary’s native Shanagolden, where Bridget grew up. She worked for the Brothers of Charity, Foynes for over 35 years, where she was highly regarded by staff and residents. Bridget was a quiet spoken person who liked her privacy and was admired and respected by all. She took great care of her two sons Joe and Kevin and always looked out for family members. She lay in repose in Ferris’ Funeral Home, Shanagolden on Sunday, March 1 from 4pm to 7pm and large crowds came to pay their respects to family and bid farewell to Bridget, a real lady  who was only in her early fifties.

The Requiem Mass was concelebrated  by Canon Tony O’Keeffe and Canon James Ambrose in St Senan’s Church, Shanagolden on Monday, March 2nd at 12 noon. Before the mass commenced symbols associated with Bridget, photographs, emblems, teacup, work related photos were taken to the Altar. They represented her love for family, work colleagues, and caring nature. Family members participated in the readings, prayers of the faithful, offertory gifts, reflection and the choir did her proud with their singing and music. Canon Tony paid tribute during his homily and sister Marie thanked all who helped the family, and remembered Bridget with affection. Burial  took place afterwards in Kilmoylan Cemetery. We extend our sympathy to  her partner Darren, sons Joe and Kevin, sister Marie (Griffin) brothers Michael, Patrick and James, uncle Donie, daughter-in-law Amanda, brother-in-law Pat, sister-in-law Angharad, nieces, nephews, relatives and a large circle of friends. May she rest in Peace.

Congratulations to Mary Ita Keane, Grouse Lodge, Ardagh, who recently was presented  with Honorary IFA Life Membership for her outstanding service to the organisation. In her local Shanagolden branch she has held every position from chairperson down to committee level. She has served as Treasurer, and PRO of Limerick IFA, and chairperson of the Limerick IFA Sheep committee, representing them in Dublin. A lifetime devoted to improving the quality of life of Limerick farmers she is deserving of this honorary membership. Continued good wishes to Mary Ita in her future work.

Congratulations to Niamh Foley, Old Mill, and Saint Mary’s Athletic Club Rathkeale, who was recently crowned Munster champion in the U-19 girls 60m event at the Munster Juvenile Indoor Championship. Niamh part of a very sporting family also won a silver medal in the 200m event.

Francis O’Connor, Ardagh and his wife Áine O’Connell  from the Sliabh Luachra area  live in Broadford and they recently launched their debut album. Áine describes the album as “a fusion of West Limerick and Sliabh Luachra styles”, adding: “It also looks at the music of these two particular duets that influenced our music. “A lot of the tunes they would have played would have been unusual and some of them would have been in danger of being forgotten.” Along with West Limerick flute player Donal O’Sullivan, an important later influence on Francis’ playing was Áine’s father Connie. “I would have met him when I was 16 and I would have taken to his style of playing. We played together at sessions and festivals,” says Francis,

Francis and Áine, have been playing music together for over 20 years, and included is one of Francis’ compositions, a tribute to Molly Hogan, his childhood neighbour in Ardagh. They Didn’t Come Home Until Morning, with bouzouki from Brosna’s Brian Mooney, was  launched at The Gathering in The Gleneagle, Killarney, on Saturday February 29.

The following are the Lottery results from Reen’s  Bar, Ardagh on Monday March 2. The numbers drawn were 8,17,23 and 28, and there was no Jackpot winner. Congratulations to the five lucky dip winners who won €40 each: Mary Steele, Ardagh, Johnny Flaherty, c/o Josie, Mike and Matso, c/o Neary’s, Patrick O’Connor, c/o The Thatch, and John R Kelly, c/o Moore’s. Next week’s Jackpot will be €6,400 and the draw will be held in Neary’s Bar Ardagh on Monday night. The Lottery can now be done online by logging onto clubforce.com, go to “find my club”-St Kieran’s and just click on play lottery and pay by card.

Saint Kieran’s Heritage Association held their March meeting in Ardagh Community Centre on Thursday, March 5, and 16 members were present. Chairman JP O’Sullivan welcomed all and Secretary Mary Kury read the minutes, and matters arising were dealt with. Cheques were presented to Ardagh/Carrigkerry Senior Citizens Association  and the Brothers of Charity  at the last meeting, and letters of thanks received from both  were read out. Participation in the Saint Patrick’s Day Parades in Rathkeale, and Newcastle West on Tuesday March 17 were discussed, and the theme will be a walking parade with the pike men performing. Permission to hold the annual church gate collections were received and the permit dates are Coolcappa/Kilcolman May 23/24, and Ardagh/Carrigkerry July 11/12.

The main body of the meeting concentrated on the calendar of events for 2020, and the following is a preliminary list: Friday,  March 27, Down Memory Lane talk in Ardagh Hall with three speakers. Friday, April 24, Down Memory Lane talk in Ardagh Hall with three speakers. Thursday, April  30, Ballylin Hill Walk for May Eve. Friday, June 26, Mary Kury will launch her next book In Loving Memory (Headstone Inscriptions of Coolcappa, Clonagh, Kilscannell, and Rathronan graveyards in Coolcappa Hall. Saturday, June 27,  Coolcappa walk and talks from various speakers from 11am, taking in Lisnaculla Castle, Clonagh Graveyard, Saint Kyran’s Well, Patrick O’Brien’s Memorial, and Mount Henry House.

Sunday, June 28 a special mass will be celebrated at 12 noon in Saint Kyran’s Church to mark the 50th anniversary of the church opening.  The heritage association will be involved in the events (TBC) later in the afternoon. Heritage Week  will be held this year from Friday August 15,to Sunday, August 23 and an event to be confirmed will be held to mark it. Friday, September 14, the annual weekend festival will commence with the launch of the Down Memory Lane Journal in Ardagh Hall. Sunday  an event will be held in the village (TBC). Sunday November 15, The Christmas Craft Fair will be held in Ardagh Hall. The next meeting will be held on Thursday, April 2 at 8pm in Ardagh Hall and all are welcome.

An information night for the forthcoming Oskars was held in Ardagh Community Centre on Friday, March 6, and a good crowd was in attendance. David Woulfe, and Deirdre Ambrose represented the organising committee, and Martin Foran, who was involved on the first Lip Sync in Ardagh in 2017, attended and his presentation was very interesting and informative. He showed snippets from past events held in other counties on the big screen, plus a selection of films that they did.

The finale night in the Devon Inn Hotel on Saturday November 14, will be a four-hour event, featuring seven films, (12-minute duration app) plus another showing the best bleepers from them. The cast members will be shown arriving for the gala event, and  eleven Oscars will be presented for best film, producer,  actor, actress, location, costume etc.   Voting will be held on the night, and the judges will give their verdicts. The MC will speak with cast members, and a raffle will be held also. Tickets will be very scarce due to the high demand and hotel capacity.

To get to this stage two coaches will attend on the audition’s night, and from their observations they will select the actors/actresses and choose seven films from over twenty that they can cast. The rehearsals and filming will be held in October, allowing a few stress-free weeks before the gala night. All who attend the auditions will receive a role in the films, and many extras will also be needed to participate. A Producer  will be appointed to each film who will oversee sourcing costumes, props, scene locations etc.

Many fundraisers will be held to finance the event, which is costly to stage. A booklet like the Lip Sync one will be published, where people  can show case their businesses.  The business community can also sponsor one of the eleven  Oskars that will be presented on the final night. Martin  answered many  questions  from those in attendance about  the event, which has been held very successfully in other Limerick venues. It creates a great buzz and atmosphere within a community, and people who have never acted can fit in seamless after the first few rehearsals.

This is a joint ADRSC and St Kieran’s GAA fundraiser, and both deserve great credit for the facilities they have provided for the enjoyment of others in Ardagh, and Coolcappa. The ADRSC are hoping to help raise funds to develop a much-needed walking path around the community field in Ardagh and St Kieran’s are fundraising for development work on the GAA grounds in Coolcappa.

This information meeting is the start, so hopefully people can come along  on the next night ( date later in March)  for the auditions. It would be lovely if people who aren’t involved in either organisation but had an interest in getting involved in the Oskars came along. They would be very welcome, as it is going to be a real community event for all age groups to enjoy. The real highlight will be seeing themselves in action in one of the well broadcast films, The Snapper, Waking Ned, The Field, Derry Girls, Sister Act, or Man about Dog etc.

The official launch of the Limerick GAA Club draw for 2020 took place at the Woodlands House Hotel,  Adare on Monday, February 10. The cost to join is €10 each month or €100 for the year, and a minimum of 50% goes directly to the club, (depending on the numbers joined) and the other 50% to support the county teams. The first prize each month is €10,000, with cash prizes ranging down from €3,000,to €2,000, 1,000, €500,€250, and €100. Thirty prizes in total each month, with a special prize added this year. The first special monthly  prize will be a family weekend away to the Activity Centre in Longford. The first draw will take place on Limerick Live 95fm, during the sports programme on Saturday April 4. Saint Kieran’s are accepting members at present, in person or online.

The Stations of the Cross will be said in Calvary Cemetery, Newcastle West every Sunday during Lent at 3pm. All are welcome to attend and to remember loved ones in prayer.

The West Limerick Scór final will be held in Askeaton Community Hall on Friday March 13, at 8pm. The question time event will be held in Mungret GAA Clubhouse on Friday March 20, at 8pm, and all clubs are encouraged to participate in our traditional music song recitation comedy and dance.

All musicians singers’ dancers and storytellers are invited to Jim’s Rambling House Newbridge on Friday March 13, at 8.30pm. It promises to be a great night of music song and dance, and all are welcome.

A set Céilí will be held in Halla Tadhg Gaelach Tournafulla on Friday March 13 commencing at 9.30pm. Music will be supplied by The Kingdom Céilí Band and admission is €10. Refreshments will be provided, and all are welcome. 

Congratulations to  Ann O’Gorman, Newcastle West, who won €255 in the West Limerick 102fm 50/50 draw, held on Friday March 6. Tickets cost €2 and they are available from volunteers, in local shops, or from the radio station. All support is very much appreciated. New volunteers to get involved in all aspects of the station are needed at present. The roles available include research and studio work, fundraising and lots more. Contact the station if interested. The AGM will be held on Tuesday March 31, at 7.30pm in the Longcourt House Hotel Newcastle West. All are welcome, with a special welcome for new and energetic people of diverse interests.