20 April 2011

Galway Gospel Choir in Concert
Portumna Bingo
Seumas O`Kelly Players Present "The Year of the Hiker"
Country Legends Music Festival
Mark Conroy Book Published
Lecture - "The Great Irish Famine and Some of its Local Implications"
Portumna Arts Group - Renowned Writers to Visit Portumna
Brainstorming Meeting
Weight Watchers
Portumna GAA
Portumna Castle & Gardens
Portumna Community School
Ireland Reaching Out - Project Update Meeting
Ann Patterson Memorial Dance
Good Friday Table Quiz - Sign Out Youth Project Fundraiser
Texas Hold 'Em Night - Portumna Rugby Club Fundraiser
Woodford Playground Official Opening
First Aid Course
Portumna on Facebook

Galway Gospel Choir in Concert
Galway Gospel Choir in concert Friday, May 6th in St Brigid's Church, Portumna at 8.30pm. Admission €5. Supported by Omna Singers. This is a Portumna Arts Group Project.


Portumna Bingo
Portumna Bingo had an amazing evening last Saturday night at our Bingo Bonanzer!! A record number of people came out to support and there was an Easter Egg for everyone in the audience. A sincere thank you to our sponsors of the eggs, Finns of Gala, St Brendan Street, Portumna.

Come and join us for another week of Bingo Madness this week at 8.30pm, Portumna Town Hall. Jackpot €2,250.00!!! Free sheet-It has been decided to give out a Free sheet to everyone who goes to bingo this sat night as a thank you for the fantastic support last week.


Seumas O`Kelly Players Present "The Year of the Hiker"
The Seumas O`Kelly Players are putting the final touches to their John B Keane Classic, "The Year of the Hiker", it will be performed on next Friday, Saturday, & Sunday, 22nd, 23rd, & 24th April, in the Lough Rea Hotel & Spa at 8:30pm. Come along and enjoy, What i Promise to be, "A very Enjoyable Production"

Tickets can be Purcharced in Advance, at DigiPhoto Bride street Loughrea, €10 in advance, or €12.50 at the door on the night.


Country Legends Music Festival
A galaxy of stars from the country music world will descend on the Shannon Oaks Hotel in Portumna on Easter Thursday to celebrate 50 years of hits in an event that is expected to attract up to 1,000 patrons.

For the first time ever, the Legendary Entertainers will be performing under the one roof, celebrating over 50 years entertaining country music lovers all over the world and singing hundreds of their hit records.

Reeling back the years will be Brian Coll, who is 51 years on the road, Philomena Begley, looking forward to 2012 when celebrates 50 years of entertainment, Gene Stuart, Roly Daniels, Ray Lynam, Brendan Quinn, Gloria, who has the distinction of having her massive hit "One day at a time" in the charts for 2 years, Patrice, Frank Mc Caffrey, John Glenn, Frankie Mc Bride, Larry Cunningham, Brendan Shine and T.R. Dallas.

Stars of yesteryear, who have passed to their eternal reward, have not been forgotten, her daughter, Lisa Stanley, will remember Maisie Mc Daniels, Ireland's first Country Music T.V star in a show and Shaun Loughrey will pay tribute to his late great Dad Johnny Loughrey.

Younger country audiences will be well catered for with Irelands Top 2 current stars, Portumna's own Mike Denver and the very popular, Jimmy Buckley.

The event will see visitors flock to Portumna from all over Ireland and the UK for the four day spectacular.


Mark Conroy Book Published
Congratulations to Mark Conroy whose textbook "In Transition: An Anthology of Texts and Tasks for Transition Year English" has just been published by Educate.ie. The book, which includes 12 modules of interest to the Transition Year student - including photography, film, poetry, media studies, debating, and more - will be on booklists for this September. Mark is a secondary school teacher and Transition Year co-ordinator, who most recently was employed at Mercy College Woodford. He is currently writing a series of text books for Junior Certificate English, which will be on booklists for the 2012/1013 school year.


Lecture - "The Great Irish Famine and Some of its Local Implications"
South East Galway Archaeological and Historical Society hosts a lecture by John Joe Conwell MA entitled; The Great Irish Famine and some of its local implications in Donie O'Meara's Restaurant, Portumna on Tuesday, April 26 at 8.30pm.


Portumna Arts Group - Renowned Writers to Visit Portumna
Portumna Arts Group are busy planning their Shorelines Festival for Sept 22-25th to provide projects, workshops and performances relating to the Arts for all age groups within the community. As part of ongoing events, the arts Group will host two consecutive evening's entertainment for the community. In collaboration with the Irish Writers Centre, 3 renowned writers, John Connolly, Alex Barclay & Kevin Barry will read in the Shannon Oaks Hotel at 8pm on Thursday May 5th and a discussion on writing, the crime genre, the short story and reading will follow.


Brainstorming Meeting
Last Wednesday evening 20 or so people turned up for a meeting of minds, it was designed for individuals to express themselves in the form of ideas on how to promote Portumna to the outside world to let them know where to find us on the world stage.

Lots of good thoughts came through at the meeting. Portumna despite the recession still has a lot going for it. Some of the the ups are: we have the River Shannon at our back door; a forest park under utilized; historical sites that cannot be found by visitors without some effort - it's like a game of hide and seek – we know where all the best spots are now you find them approach. When tourists are on holidays they should not have to waste time looking for places of interest – they need to have signposts guiding them there. Finally we have people living in Portumna who are willing to put their shoulder to the wheel to push the boat out and promote the beautiful Town of Portumna. Starting with an empty canvas we need adaquate signage so tourists can find what they are looking for or on the other hand what they are not looking for.

Many of the suggestions at the meeting were tourism based, things like having a fully serviced Camper site adjacent to the town and River, proper signage, develop the forest park which is very busy most weekends but does not have the facilities like a coffee shop, children's playground, a play area, zip line, the list is endless.

It may be time to marry private business with the public sites, historical or otherwise, a classic example would be the castle grounds could be used for carnival like entertainment during the summer months. Someone giving instruction on how to captaiin your own boat at the marina. Bicycle hire within the forest park. Community gardens. Link up villages and towns along the River Shannon a kind of twinning idea. The list is endless.

The tourist office needs be located on the main street as a matter of urgency, maybe someone with a civic mind may give a premises free of rent for the purposes of a Tourist Information stop – even for the summer months to get us started.

There will be another meeting in a month's time, where people who were present at the first meeting will feedback to the group and anyone else who would like to air some views can do so.


Weight Watchers
Weight Watchers meet every Monday (including Bank Holidays) in The Social Centre at Portumna Retirement Village at 7:00pm. New members are always welcome.


Portumna GAA
Lotto: There was no winner of Sat nights lotto jackpot worth 3100 euros. The numbers drawn were 6 12 22 27. Two people matched three numbers Betty Eager and Fr Brendan Lawless. They each receive 50 euros. This Sat nights lotto is worth 3200 euros.

Minors: The minors got off to a good start in the championship with a very comprehensive win over Ballygar. Ballygar was the first to register a score and had 1-1 registeres without reply. But it was the only time they were to go ahead because when Niall Concannon put over a point for Portumna it was all Portumna after that. Scorers for Portumna Jamie Flanagan 2-2 Owen Treacy 1-2 Darren Dillon 0-1 and Ronan O Meara 1-7.Portumna 4-13 Ballygar 2-6. Their next game is against Kinvara.

Voluntary Work: A big thank you to all the people who gave off their free time over the last few days to help working on the pitch goalmouth. It was great to see so many people working in a voluntary capacity on behalf of the club and again we sincerely thank you.

Texas Hold'em: Reminder Texas Hold'em will take place on Sunday 8th May in O Meara's. Tickets can be purchased off any Committee member.


Portumna Castle & Gardens
Portumna Castle & Gardens will open on April 21st for the 2011 season. This semi-fortified Jacobean mansion, situated on the northern shores of Lough Derg, was built before 1618 by Richard (Burke) de Burgo, 4th Earl of Clanricarde. The castle was the main seat of the de Burgo family for over 200 years, until gutted by fire in 1826. Following the fire and the ravages of time the castle degenerated into a roofless ruin. Major conservation works have been carried out to date by the OPW whos long-term objective is to preserve for future generations to appreciate and enjoy one of the most important architectural and historic houses in Ireland and one of significance in terms of European architectural heritage.

The imposing façade of the castle is approach by a long avenue with three formal enclosures which are planted in the most up to date style of the 17th Century, forming a very impressive layout. The Kitchen garden, recently restored under a FAS scheme in partnership with the OPW is laid out on a grid pattern, providing flowers, vegetables, fruit and herbs for local distribution. This garden is a recommended visit for the amature or enthuastic gardener and for the visitor who just wishes a peacefull stroll while appreciating the variety of colour and fragerances. The ground floor of the building is now open to the public and houses an exhibition and DVD on the history of the de Burgo family and the conservation works.

The site itself is surrounded by the town's local attractions and amenities including Portumna Forest Park, a modern childrens playground, picnic areas, Golf Club, local resturaunts and Hotel.

Open daily from April 21st to September 28th, 9.30- 6pm Daily.
Weekends only (Fri,Sat,&Sun) for the month of October, 9.30-5pm.

Free guided tour available with admission ticket, subject to guide availability.

Free Admission, Tour and Fun Quiz for all Primary And Secondary Schools. Booking required.

For further details Tel: 090 9741658 or Email: portumnacastle@opw.ie


Portumna Community School
Athletics: 3 Gold, 3 Silver and 3 Bronze for Portumna C.S. in the South Connaught Track & Field Competition: Portumna Community School's Athletics Club travelled to Dangan, Galway, for the competition last week. The day started very well when Caitlin Gohery (5th yr) won Gold in the Intermediate Girls Shot Putt. This was followed by Aoife Mounsey (1st yr) who won the Junior Girls Long Jump with a fantastic jump of 4m 68cm, and Maria Kelly (2nd yr) who won the Junior Girls High Jump. Portumna C.S. also had great success in the Shot Putt with Tony Needham (1st yr) coming second in the Minor Boys competition and Peter Claffey (2nd yr) coming second in the Junior Boys competition. On the track Eoin McIntyre had a great race in the Intermediate Boys 3000m to come home in second place. Lisa Callanan (6th yr) came 3rd in the Senior Discus, Oisin Royston (5th yr) third place in the Senior High Jump, Cyrilla Larkin (5th yr) third in the Intermediate 80m hurdles, Christopher Treacy (6th yr) placed fifth in the Senior Javelin, Padraig Corcoran (3rd yr) came 6th in the Junior Long Jump and Ciara Robinson (1st yr) came fifth in the 1500m.


Ireland Reaching Out - Project Update Meeting
Project up date on Tue 19th April at 8.30pm in the Shannon Oaks Hotel. At this meeting, preparations for the Ireland Reaching Out "Week of Welcomes" (June 26th - July 2nd) will be presented as well as progress reports from a number of parishes throughout South-East Galway. Refreshments Served.


Ann Patterson Memorial Dance
In the Town Hall Portumna on Friday 29th April from 9.00pm - 12.00am. Music by Pat & Richie. Refreshments Served. Admission €10. All proceeds to Galway Hospice.


Good Friday Table Quiz - Sign Out Youth Project Fundraiser
Good Friday Table Quiz will take place in Portumna Town Hall on Good Friday 22nd April at 8pm. Tables of 4: Adults €40, Students €20. Proceeds in aid of Sign Out Youth Project to cover annual insurance.


Texas Hold 'Em Night - Portumna Rugby Club Fundraiser
Portumna Rugby Club are holding a Texas Hold 'Em Night on Good Friday in the Portumna Retirement Village with €2,000 in guaranteed prizes. Tickets are €50 available on the door any enquiries to 087 6298990.


Woodford Playground Official Opening
Woodford Playground Committee wish to invite all members of the Community to the official opening of the playground on Easter Monday April 25th from 3pm to 6pm. A fun afternoon for all the family!


First Aid Course
A 3 day level 5 first aid course will be held in Portumna on May 28th and 29th also on the 11th June. Places limited confirmation by 30th of April phone Fidelma Gordon on 086 315 8544.


Portumna on Facebook
Did you know Portumna now has a very active Facebook page? Simply search for "Portumna Co. Galway" on Facebook to get lots of up-to-date information on events and happenings. Feel free to post your own information there too – it's a resource for You afterall.


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