04 May 2011

Car Boot Sale - Portumna Tidy Towns Fundraiser
Portumna Tidy Towns - 'Litter Picks'
Official Opening of Woodford Playground
Good News for Irish Workhouse Centre
Portumna Community Games
Thrilling Night for Portumna
Galway Gospel Choir to Perform in Portumna
'Come Dine with Us' – Portumna Secret Dining Spectacular
Volley Ball
Portumna and District Active Retirement Association
Gortanumera Development Association A.G.M.
Portumna Camogie Club - Clothes Collection
An Gáirdín Organic and Ecology Centre
St. Bridget's Church Portumna - 50th Anniversary Celebration
Croi Camino Walk in memory of Michael O'Shea RIP

Car Boot Sale - Portumna Tidy Towns Fundraiser
Portumna Tidy Towns are out and busy again this year in their quest to keep Portumna Tidy and beautiful. Our annual Car Boot Sale will take place on Sunday 8th May in Portumna Co-operative Mart. The gates will open at 12pm. Car - €20. Car and Trailer - €25. Van - €30. Van and Trailer €35. What might be your rubbish may be another person's treasure! Last year's sale was a great success and a great day was had by all. All funds raised will go towards the replanting on all the flowerbeds and planters around the town and towards the purchase of equipment required for daily maintenance.


Portumna Tidy Towns - 'Litter Picks'
Weekly organised "Litter Picks" continue on a Saturday morning, meeting at the Library at 8am but everyone is encouraged to go out and organise a tidy up in their own estate, street, road etc. Litter pickers, gloves, bags etc are available to anyone interested if you come along on any Saturday morning and we will give you all you need to set up a litter pick in your own area. Let's continue to keep Portumna tidy for our tourists and ourselves.


Official Opening of Woodford Playground
Monday, April 25 2011 saw the official opening of Woodford Playground. The scene was set with the sun shining down on all as Fr O Kieran Rourke blessed the playground. Marjorie Whyte of Woodford whose generosity of providing a site allowed this project to happen cut the ribbon. As the balloons floated into the sky she voiced the need for play in all our young. The afternoon belonged to the people of Woodford and all the surrounding parishes who came out to play and enjoy this wonderful amenity.

The help and support of Christy Hanbury of Creative Play Solutions allowed this project advance very quickly. Financially the support of Galway Rural Development, Galway County Council, Tommie Larkins GAA Club, Loughrea Credit Union and Bank of Ireland must be highlighted. The Fundraising team were superb. Donations and spot prizes from local businesses, individuals and so many more along the way ensured this successful opening. Pat Lyons of Coillte and Oliver Donlon of Nordon Landscapes donated all the plants and trees needed for the playground. Thanks to the generosity of Shannon Castle Line, one lucky winner went away with a three night cruise on the Shannon and another winner enjoyed a helicopter ride home thanks to Christy Sheil of Executive Helicopters. A perfect end to a perfect day.


Good News for Irish Workhouse Centre
Funding of €50,000 was allocated by the Heritage Council, under its large scale projects programme, towards roofing at the Workhouse Centre.

The centre now has its own Facebook page under the Irish Workhouse Centre, and also the short film, which as made with the help of the Galway Film Centre, can be viewed on Youtube. It is hoped that the centre will be open to visitors by the 1st July, this year. The seldom told story of the Irish Workhouse will be the focus of the centre. Also with Portumna Castle, one can see both sides of this difficult and sad period in Irish history. Over time, the intention is to find new, sustainable uses for all of the complex and to develop the site into a significant centre, bringing social, cultural and economic benefits to the area. The Irish Workhouse Centre Project is co-ordinated by SE Galway IRD: 090-9741867.


Portumna Community Games
Portumna community games on Sunday 8th may, registration at 1.30pm in hurling field. Fun races for under 6's. Family admission is €5.


Thrilling Night for Portumna
With names like John Connolly & Alex Barclay, authors who will read in Portumna on Thursday May 5th, a thriller of an evening is guaranteed. Add to the mix the unmistakable playful voice of Kevin Barry and his City of Bohane and the evening will surely be entertaining also. These three writers will also discuss reading and writing and as partof the Peregrine Readings on tour from the Irish Writers' Centre and Portumna' s Arts Group is delighted to host the event.

This is a great opportunity for all the lovers of crime, the voracious reader and the lover of literature to hear writers read their work and share their own words in Portumna John Connolly's first novel "Every Dead Thing" introduced a well loved character, Charlie Parker to his readers and in Sept 2011, the 10th Parker novel will appear. Alex Barclay blends psychological suspense, multidimensional characters and edgy plot-lines that will have people on the edge of their seats. The newly published and acclaimed novel of Kevin Barry's "The City of Bohane" will bring us well into the 21st century with this futuristic world in the Irish imaginary city of Bohane with its quirks and twists.

The Peregrine Reading is an event not to be missed. Admission is €5. So do come along and meet the authors in the flesh on Thursday May 5th in The Shannon Oaks Hotel at 7.30pm. For more information call 087 2931055.


Galway Gospel Choir to Perform in Portumna
Friday, May 6th, a concert with Galway's Gospel Choir will take place in St Brigid's Church, Portumna at 8.30pm. This concert, promoted by Portumna Arts Group, will also feature Portumna's local Vocal Group, Omna , under the baton of Marie Power.

The aim of Galway's Gospel Choir is to bring together people of different ages and cultures from Galway city and its environs, through the medium of novel music and to allow people the opportunity to express themselves creatively in a warm and welcoming environment. The Galway Gospel Choir actively tours and performs both nationally and internationally and through the years the choir has raised over €10,000 for local charities such as COPE, Fairgreen Men's Shelter, Access Music Project, Simon Community, and the Kilcornan Center. They have performed on a number of occasions with the Harlem Gospel Choir, the Celtic Tenors and a range of choirs from around the world. So grab a cushion for comfort and come along to a guaranteed enjoyable one hour performance with a donation of €5 at the door willingly accepted for local charity.


'Come Dine with Us' – Portumna Secret Dining Spectacular
Tickets for this unique dining and social event went on sale last week and a large number were immediately snatched up by the fun loving foodies of Portumna. Sunday 15th May in the Shannon Oaks Hotel promises to be a great night of food, fun and entertainment along with lots of surprises and revelations. Who will prepare and cook your 3 course meal? Can you guess the 'secret chefs'? Who will be your host for the night? What surprise artists will entertain you?

All this for only €20 including a wine reception. If you want to come along to this once off culinary experience there are only a few tickets remaining which can be purchased from Palmerston Store, Ladies Day or Susan Royston 087 6779267. Tickets must be purchased before the event.

Proceeds go to Portumna Sign Out Youth Project and Portumna and District Lions Club. Tickets for this unique culinary experience are limited to 130 and cost only €20.


Volley Ball
Volley Ball takes place every Tuesday from 7.30pm to 9pm on Sign Out All Weather Pitch for teens to adults. No previous experience necessary. For further information contact Susan 087 6779267.


Portumna and District Active Retirement Association
Congratulations to all who organised and attended the Ann Paterson memorial tea dance last Friday night in the Town Hall Portumna, a very fitting tribute to Ann who so loved dancing.

Meeting this Thursday 5th May will start at 7.30 for choir practice, followed by the fitness exercise programme and plans for our Bealtaine night.

Thursday 12th May: will be final practise for Bealtaine, also Bingo and Cards.

Friday 13th May: we are invited to an of afternoon Tea and Music in the Castle between 2 and 4 o'clock and to plant a Magnolia in the newly replanted Organic Garden which is now totally wheelchair and buggy friendly. This is to commemorate Bealtaine for May 2011, and a plaque will be erected beside our tree and flower bed which is kindly sponsored by "National Monuments Department".

Thursday 19th May: John Jo Conwell will give an illustrated talk on the "Famine".

Tuesday 24th May: will be our Bealtaine celebration night.

Sunday 29th May: is the Bealtaine Dawn chorus on the Shannon Banks. This date is celebrated Nationally across Ireland by Active Retirement Association group choirs to sing across water venues. We have invited other choirs within the community young and old to join us.


Gortanumera Development Association A.G.M.
The A.G.M. of Gortanumera Development Association will be held on Tuesday, 10 May at 9 p.m. in Scoil Mhuire. New members are invited to attend. Become part of a success story! Beat the recession! Don't wait for the I.D.A.! Join the G.D.A.!


Portumna Camogie Club - Clothes Collection
Saturday 7th May is the final collection day for all your unwanted clothes, curtains ,shoes, handbags, we will accept everything except pillows or duvets. If you have anything to donate please contact Deirdre 087 769 0729 or Christine 087 698 0067 to arrange collection before Friday evening. Thanking you for your support.


An Gáirdín Organic and Ecology Centre
Awakening to the World of Nature with Dr. John Feehan (Senior Lecturer in UCD School of Biology and Science): Saturday 21st May 10am – 4pm. This is a day to be out and about with John as he leads us into the world of plants, insects, invertebrates and their habitats. He will open up the marvellous world of the uniqueness of each species and help us to explore the intimate connection and interdependence of everything in nature. John's intimate knowledge, enthusiasm and experience will make this day one of exciting learning and marvellous discovery. John has written extensively on his subject. His writings include History of Farming in Ireland; The Bogs of Ireland and The Wild Flowers of Offaly. The Singing Heart of the World is the title of his latest book.

Cost €40 - includes lunch, Contact 0909741689 or angairdin1@gmail.com see www.angairdin.com

Growing in Polytunnels with Dolores Keegan: Wednesday 11th May 10am - 4pm. This day will cover all aspects of tunnel growing including: designing a yearly crop plan, choosing suitable varieties of plants maintaining healthy plants and irrigation.

Cost €45, Contact 0909741689 or angairdin1@gmail.com www.angairdin.com


St. Bridget's Church Portumna - 50th Anniversary Celebration
There was a special mass celebrated in St. Bridget's Church last Sunday to mark the 50th Anniversary of it's opening in May 1961. The Parish Priest Fr. Brendan Lawless welcomed those parishioners who were present here 50 years ago or who helped to raise the finance for this fine building - St. Bridget's .

The present parish comprising the regions of Portumna, Gortanumera and Boula, with the title of Lickmolassy and Kilmalinogue, is dedicated to St. Bridget having been originally dedicated to St. Molaisse. From its earliest history monks have served the parish from Devenish Island, by Cistercians, by Dominicans and since the 19th century by Diocesan Clergy.

St Bridget's Church, Portumna was commissioned by the late Fr Patrick Jennings PP in the early 1950s it took seven years to get the final plan for the Church rubber-stamped. The design for the church was drawn up by Architects, WH Byrne to accommodate 900 worshippers and was built by John Meenaghan, Contractors, Dublin. The site of the church was once the Towns fair green. The building material used in this Church is Cut Limestone most of which came from what was called the "new castle" which was located in the present car park of the forest park. The mahogany seats, doors, confessionals etc were all crafted locally by Paul Connolly who happily still lives in our midst with his wife and family. Most of the furnishings of the Church were donated. The bell tower was added later and built by Thomas Mitchell, Contractors.

The Church was solemnly opened and blessed by Most Rev Dr. William Philbin, Bishop of Clonfert, on May 11th 1961. Bishop Hanley of Elphin preached the sermon on that occasion.

Sean O Dwyer extended a special welcome to all clerical guests who concelebrated Mass with Fr. Lawless. His Lordship Most Rev. John Kirby, Bishop of Clonfert, Monsignor Ned Stankard, Parish Priest of Cappatagle, Monsignor Cathal Geraghty, Adm., Loughrea, Rev. Pat Naughton, retired Parish Priest of Woodford, Rev. Vincent Lawless, retired SMA missionary and the older brother of our own Parish Priest, Rev. Brendan Lawless. Many other priests who have served in Portumna sent their apologies as they were engaged in their own parochial duties. Fr Abe Kennedy was attending the beatification ceremony for Pope John Paul 11, in Rome.

Bishop John Kirby planted a tree outside the front door of the Church after the ceremony. The tree is called "The Wedding Cake Tree". Many of the locals who helped in raising money to build the church were there to place clay on the new tree.

Fr. Jennings who was Parish Priest in Portumna from 1947 to 1974 personally supervised and directed the entire building project. It is a tribute to his single–minded approach that he managed to do this without the services of a telephone in the Parochial House. He made all his business calls from the exchange in Portumna Post Office at a fixed time each week. He was greatly assisted in this huge building task by a very hardworking "Laymans Committee" who raised funds for the new Church. In 1974 Fr. Jennings retired at the age of 76 and spent his final years in the St. John Vianney Home for priests at Portiuncula, Ballinasloe. He died there on January 31st 1985. His remains were removed to St. Bridget's Church Portumna on February 1st. Coincidently the removal of his remains as with those of Monsignor Joyce in 1947 took place on the feast day of St.Bridget patron saint of the parish. He is buried within the Church grounds. (Source John Joe Conwell in his book "Lickmolassy by the Shannon".)


Croi Camino Walk in memory of Michael O'Shea RIP
Mike's sister, Dolores, and his eldest daughter, Aoife, are walking 120Km of the famous Camino from May 21st to raise funds for research into heart disease - its causes and early detection. They have to raise €4,500 and are just €500 short of meeting their target. If you knew Michael, or would like to sponsor them - no matter how small an amount - text or email them on (085) 1925466 / holyford@gmx.de.


Return to Top of Page

Picture This Photography, Portumna
Homepage   -   About   -   Contact   -   Links   -   Site Map   -   Privacy Statement