WELCOME HOME: Warmest of welcomes to all those who have travelled home from near and far to celebrate “The Glenfarne Gathering” this week at the 44th Annual Glenfarne Gala; and great, Glenfarne greetings to new friends and visitors. The festivities run from the 1st to 5th August.
FAMILY FESTIVAL FUN: Some of the fun-filled family festival events include a Children’s Treasure Hunt starting at 11am on Saturday, 3rd August from The Rainbow; a Family Quiz on the same day at 4pm in The Rainbow and “Family Snapshots” at 8pm, also at The Rainbow. Sports Day starts at 4pm on Sunday, 4thAugust in St Mary’s GAA Park and there will be a multitude of family activities; also a chip shop and an ice-cream van. Several exciting events will take place on Bank Holiday Monday, 5thAugust including a Duck Race in the Village at 4pm. See the Glenfarne community website for the full itenary.
BLESSINGS OF THE GRAVES: Saturday, 3rd August: Mass and the Blessing of the Graves will take place in St Michael’s at 7pm. Sunday, 4th August: The Blessing of The Graves in St Mary’s will take place after the 11am Mass. Sunday, 4th August: The Blessing of The Graves in Kilmakerrill Cemetery will also take place at 2.30pm.
DANCING IN THE RAINBOW: Three fabulous nights of dancing will take place this week at the “Rainbow Ballroom of Romance”. The Glenfarne Gala opens on Thursday, 1st August at 11pm with dancing to Nathan Carter and his band. A GAA Junior Disco will take place at 9.30pm on Saturday, 3rd August; and on Sunday, 4th August Philomena Begley and her band “The New Ramblin’ Men”, featuring Aidan Quinn will take to the stage at 11pm.
GLENFARNE STATION HOUSE: Only 100 metres from the original “Ballroom of Romance”! Glenfarne Station, part of the former Sligo, Leitrim and Northern Counties Railway is now open to the public from 1st August until 30thSeptember 2013. On view are the original Waiting Room, Ticket Office and Toilet. There is a display of old photos, posters and timetables. Outside the Railway Platform and old Signal Box are visible. Opening times Monday to Friday: 6pm to 10pm. Saturday, Sunday and Bank Holidays: 9am to 1pm. Telephone 071 9853361. ADMISSION IS FREE OF CHARGE. Glenfarne Station has been approved by the Department of the Arts, Heritage and Local Government as being a building of significant architectural and historical interest.
HERITAGE NIGHT: An interesting new event called “Heritage Night – The Night of The Gathering” will take place at The Rainbow on Friday, 2nd August at 8pm. There will be story-telling and a nostalgic look on the big screen at the Leitrim Team as Connacht Champions coming back to Glenfarne; also snippets from a Heritage evening that took place at the Rainbow nineteen years ago. Extracts from the CD shown on the night will show Charlie Cullen getting shaved with the old fashioned cut-throat razor; Mrs White making bread on the old hearth fire (one cake got slightly burned); the Evans brothers making scythe-stones and more. Confirmation of some of the traditional crafts taking place on the night include: making bread; butter-making; making side-stones; hay-rope making; the spinning wheel; handmade vintage, silver and costume jewellery; crochet; and art work.
TREASURES OF THUR TREK: If mountains could talk, Thur Mountain would have countless spell-binding tales to tell… Thur has an abundance of rugged beauty; dramatic views and a rich tapestry of fascinating history ranging from a mythological giant; the ancient “Bilberry Sunday” and much more. A walk on Thur Mountain will take place this Bank Holiday Monday, 5th August starting at 11am from St Michael’s School, Glenfarne. Duration three and a half to four hours. Please bring your own refreshments.
GLENFARNE GALA 10k: You will never walk or run on a more scenic multi-terrain 10k course that the Glenfarne 10k! The A.A.I. approved race will take place on Saturday, 3rd August at 1pm and will start at St Mary’s GAA Park, Glenfarne. Entry fee is E10. See the Run Ireland website www.runireland.com for more information or contact 086 0857653 or 087 9776350. Refreshments afterwards in the Rainbow. Prizes: 1st three males/females; 1st over 40 male/female; 1st local male / female. Prize-giving at 3pm.
A SLICE OF HISTORY: New visitors to Glenfarne might be interested to hear that there is an early history of annual, summer festivities in the area. In ancient times “The Bilberry Festival” was a joyful celebration of Celtic spirituality and was associated with the first harvest of the year; summer fruits, water and mountains. Singing and dancing took place on Thur Mountain (“dancing at Lūnasa”) and sporting competitions were held by the lake, near to where Glenfarne Demesne now stands.
Leitrim Treasure launch: Leitrim has long been famed as a centre for tradition, heritage and culture. It has been said that it could indeed become the Arts capital of Ireland. Nowhere is this tradition more pronounced than in the northern part of the county and so it is that the book Leitrim Treasure, due for launch on Wednesday, 7th Aug., contains numerous stories of historical, social and human interest and such is the depth of the attachment to the place that many families are making their way back from different parts of the world for the occasion.Proceedings commence with a talk by Mickey Harte on “The Value of Community” in the Bush Hotel, Carrick-on-Shannon at 8.30 pm. Admission free. Refreshments served. Everyone welcome.
Trad for Sam: Toddler Sam Bradley, Enniskillen, 2 years old on July 14th has been fighting a rare aggressive cancer since Jan 13th. A Traditional Music session in aid of Sam will be held in Ketty’s Pub on Sunday August 4th starting at 10pm. Sam is the son of Michelle McHugh Bradley who was born in Ardvarney, Glenfarne. Her father John McHugh now lives in Kiltimagh. To date, toddler Sam has had intense Chemo for three months to reduce the tumour, eight hour surgery to kidney, Adrenal Gland and tumours and then 36 days in intensive care where he received intensive Chemo and Stem cell replacement. In August, Sam starts intensive radiation for a number of weeks. After that, a decision will be made as to where (Belfast, Europe or USA) he will receive seven months of immunotherapy. The McHugh and Bradley families wish to thank the people of Glenfarne and Manorhamilton for all their support at previous events, their kind words, endless prayers and for many the kind and personal donations which have been given to us for Sam. Mary McHugh O’Flynn, Sam’s grand aunt and traditional musician has set up “Trad for Sam”. She said that the idea came from Fr. Quinn saying, “When you sing once, you pray twice” at her mother’s funeral Mass. So come along to “Trad for Sam” and play and sing and pray for Sam in Ketty’s Pub, Sunday August 4th. All singers, dancers and musicians welcome.