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Business booming at Doonbeg

JOE RUSSELL, general manager of Trump International Golf Links and Hotel Ireland in Doonbeg,  has said the five star west Clare resort is currently experiencing its busiest month since opening in 2006. Currently the golf club and lodge employees 230 full and part-time people. Acknowledging that early year uncertainty adversely affected trade in Doonbeg, following receivership and the winter storms, Joe Russell says that business has picked up considerably in recent months. “With the receivership it was slow to start off and obviously coming out of the storm, that had an impact on our golf business at the beginning of the year. But we have done a tremendous amount of work in the last number of months and August has been our best ever month since we opened. July was very strong, August is stronger and September will be strong. We’re also looking at a good October. While the early part of the year was tough going, giving everything that went …

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The cost of a pearly white smile

The average cost of teeth whitening in Clare is the fourth highest in the country, according to new research from private healthcare search engine, WhatClinic.com. Their survey has found, depending on where you live greatly affects how much you will pay for dental care in Ireland. According to its findings, the most expensive place for achieving pearly whites is one clinic in Sandycove, which charges patients more than €650 for the treatment. Across Ireland, the average cost of teeth whitening is €262, but for the best value for money people should head to Westmeath where it costs just €159. County Kerry, at €388, is the most expensive county for pearly whites, at more than double that of Westmeath. This is followed by Wicklow at €350 and Clare at €337. However, Clare fares reasonably well when compared to the average prices in Ireland for the five most common types of dental work. The average cost of getting dental fillings in Clare stands …

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John Cusack, Ian's father and organiser of the Ian's Trust To The Moon and Back cycle and run at Kilkee last Saturday, John Galvin, The Clare Champion and Gerry O'Brien, Hyundai Limerick (sponsors) awaiting the start of the 60 km cycle to Loop Head and back in aid of children with acquired brain injuries. Pic Munsterimages.ie

To the Moon and Back

I agreed to do the cycle before I even thought it through. A 60km cycle less than two weeks away was going to be a tall order, given that I haven’t done much on a bike for years. The To the Moon and Back cycle was in aid of Ian’s Trust, a charity set up to help children with acquired brain injuries, so I felt honour bound to give it a go. In the intervening fortnight, I managed to do a few 10km runs but I felt in no way properly prepared when I lined out in Kilkee last Saturday for the jaunt to Loop Head and back. I didn’t feel any better when I saw what surrounded me. Lycra-clad bodies on carbon fibre bikes were everywhere and I felt distinctly out of place on my vintage, 20 year old Raleigh racer, with its steel frame and only 12 gears. The day was dry and fortunately, not too warm. The …

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‘Celebrity’ duo seeking love in Lisdoon

An American “celebrity” mother and daughter will be hoping that cupid’s arrow strikes next month during the 157th Lisdoonvarna Matchmaking Festival. According to one of Ireland’s last traditional matchmakers, Willie Daly, the duo joked they would consider hooking up with an Irish father and son during the festival. Mr Daly insists the two Americans are quite “famous and well known in the acting industry” and would be regarded as a “celebrity” couple. However, he isn’t at liberty to disclose their identity at this point in time. He said the mother who was well off and married previously but was keen to find an Irish man who was willing to marry her. They will be part of two large separate groups of Americans travelling from NewYork, MIllapolios and Chicago who will be looking for love on from September 12 to 17 and September 20 to 20th. While Americans are frequent visitors to the Spa town for the matchmaking festival, the third …

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Time-travelling to Electric Picnic

Shannon artist Seamus Scullion will be bringing his installation The Old Octopus Medicine Show to the Electric Picnic festival which is on from August 29-31 in Stradbally, County Laois. His proposal won the Art Caravan Competition and organisers described his concept as “a quirky, eccentric time machine full of magic, mystery, fairy lights and trampoline teepee’s. It will be an area where Picnickers can chill out, listen to music and enjoy some crazy art and quirkiness. Not only can you expect a unique mind-blowing atmosphere, there will be shots of miraculous elixir distributed as a prize on our wheel of misfortune along with some torture (just to balance things out)” Seamus said he and a number of others worked on the project at his sisters house for about three months and he was quite happy with what they built. “There was an advertisement for a trailer park in Electric Picnic and I put a submission in. We won the first …

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Ennis men on cue for Guinness world record

TWO Ennis men have broken through the pain and fatigue barrier to chalk up a new Guinness World Record for non-stop singles snooker matches. But it was touch and go for Gordon O’Loughlin and Kieran Ferns who broke the previous official record by almost 8 hours and are now in the frame for a new Guinness world record. The two men completed three days and three nights of snooker games at Ennis Snooker and Pool Club, Market Street, racking up a total of 191 frames in 83 hours, but will have to wait for confirmation from Guinness that they have beaten the current official record. The official Guinness World record for a snooker marathon is 72 hours – achieved by Nick Barrett and Andy Osborne at the Conservative Club in Market Harborough, Leicestershire, from May 3 to May 6, 2013. And last month, brothers Anthony and Nathan Hebblethwaite spent 76 hours playing 285 frames in Wakefield. This record has yet …

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Working in bygone days in Ennistymon

Ennistymon will host a special screening of a television documentary filmed in the area and featuring local people more than 30 year ago. First broadcast on RTE in 1979, Neville Presho’s television documentary, A Horse’s Tale focused on the last days of the farm working horse in the locality. The Old Ennistymon Society is showing this film on Wednesday next, August 27 at 8pm at the Courthouse Art Gallery and Studios as its contribution to this year’s National Heritage Week, and admission is free. A Horse’s Tale features Moy National School children watching farmer Joe Garrihy from Carrowntedaun, Lahinch and his trusted Irish Draught mare, Doonbay at work. “The overall theme of National Heritage Week this year is Family… Generations Exploring Heritage Together, so we decided that the screening of this particular film offers an ideal opportunity for young and old today to do just that,” explained Kathryn Comber, Secretary, Old Ennistymon Society. The documentary, produced in association with RTE, …

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Inagh man leads Plan Ireland’s response to Ebola crisis

AS the deadly Ebola virus continues to spread in West Africa, Inagh’s Damien Queally is co-ordinating NGO Plan Ireland’s response to the disease. In his time with the organisation, he has worked in Uganda, Congo, Darfur, Haiti and Niger. For the past year and a half, Damien has lived in Dakar, capital of Senegal and his main work has been in the area of education and health. He expects to be there for another 18 months. Damien is now deputy head of programmes for Plan Ireland in West Africa. Plan, he explains, “focuses on children and youth, looking at what are the rights of children and young people” but as the Ebola virus claims its 1,145th victim, his work has shifted sharply in that direction. “We work with children, their communities, local agencies, government and parents, around seeing how can we help them help their children get access to education, to ensure they are getting vaccinated, to ensure they have …

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