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Sarah Jane in Miss Ireland final

Sarah Jane Dunne, a daughter of the famous late Pecker Dunne from Killimer, has qualified for the Miss Ireland finals, which will take place on Saturday, July 19. She is the first member of the Travelling community to be selected as a finalist for Miss Ireland, a competition, which has a 67-year history. Speaking about her qualification for the finals, the 24-year-old said it came about after she entered a radio competition. “I was in a competition that Ryan Tubridy had on 2FM, Miss Personality, basically nobody knew what we looked like when we entered that competition. We just filled out application forms with all our details and then they picked eight finalists, who they thought were interesting. It went on for two days; we went on the radio, we were interviewed, there was a public vote online and the public decided who they wanted to be Miss Personality. “After that, I was asked to go forward for the semi-finals …

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Burren College of Art turns 20

The Dean of Colombia University’s School of Art, a twice nominated Turner Prize painter, a former Danish Minister for Culture and a leading art theorist from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago are among the confirmed participants in a programme of events marking the 20th anniversary of Burren College of Art in Ballyvaughan. From July 17-20, works by some of its most successful and high profile alumni will go on show, with a symposium exploring alternative models of education, featuring contributions from groundbreaking Irish and overseas art education innovators. Irish-born American painter and printmaker and twice Turner Prize-nominee, Sean Scully will also receive an honorary doctorate. Located at Newtown Castle, the Burren College of Art specialises in delivering a range of contemporary fine art programmes including photography, sculpture, painting and digital media. Postgraduate programmes at the college have been accredited by National University of Ireland, Galway since 2002. Mary Hawkes Greene, president and founder of the Burren College of …

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Think carefully when getting a pup

Great – you’ve decided to get a dog. But first, you need to do some homework. Ask yourself these questions: • Can I afford the price of this pet and all the equipment I will need to make it happy in my home? • How much will routine worming, grooming, pet insurance, feeding, neutering and vet fees cost to keep my pet healthy? • Can your lifestyle make allowances for the time your puppy will take up? • Is my home suitable for my choice of breed? • Does everyone in the family agree with my choice? Do you know if your choice of breed is on the control of dogs list and what the law requires of you? • Does anyone in the family have an allergy that may be aggravated by my choice of dog? Choose the breed wisely. You have to take into consideration your lifestyle and where you live. Great Danes don’t do very well in …

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Clare archbishop’s portrait for auction

A portrait of a highly influential County Clare ecclesiastical figure is to be auctioned next week. It is that of Archbishop Joseph Clune of Perth, Western Australia, a native of Ruan. The portait, on canvas measuring 72 x 54 inches, is signed and dated on the lower left, Leo Whelan, 1913. It will go under the hammer on Wednesday next at 7pm at Sheppard’s Irish Auction House in Durrow, County Laois and, according to the auctioneers, is expected to fetch in the region of €1,500 – €2,500. Patrick Joseph Clune, DD CSsR, was born on January 6, 1864 in Ruan and died on May 24, 1935 in Perth. He was the fourth Roman Catholic Bishop of Perth and first Archbishop of Perth, serving continously in these roles from 1910 to 1935. Educated at the local national school and at St Flannan’s College in Ennis, in 1879 he entered the Catholic Missionary All Hallows College in Dublin to study for the priesthood. …

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Sean saddles up for 4,000km cycle

Kilmihil exile, Sean O’Neill  is preparing for a 4,000km cycle from Alaska to Vancouver. The 36-year-old has been based in Vancouver for around 12 years and, speaking from there , he outlined his plans for the cycle. “Basically, I’m going to head off in about four weeks from Vancouver on a ferry along the BC coast and that’ll take about four or five days,” he said. “I’ll get as far as Anchorage and fly from there on to Prudhoe Bay, which is at the very, very top of Alaska, way up there, right on the Arctic Ocean. That’s where I start and it’s all the way back to Vancouver. “It’s over 4,000 kilometres. It’ll probably take about two months or something. The first 500 miles of it should be fairly interesting, there isn’t a sinner really. It’s kind of like a gravel road for 500 miles and it’ll be about 10 or 12 days of just me, a bunch of …

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Querrin Children talk about China

Querrin National School children highlighted various aspect of  Chinese everyday life to visitors, as an end of year project, in the past week. According to school principal, Geraldine Keating the choice of China as a country to research came as a result of a couple of observations from the children. First their wonder at the thousands of products with the ‘made in China’ label and second their interest in technology. With that in mind they decided to begin the journey of learning about the country. Each child in the senior room (3rd to 6th class) selected their own topic from industry, agriculture, technology, space, customs, traditions, religion, food, music, transport, clothing and sport. The junior room (junior and senior infants, first and second class) were involved in group work that included researching animals, types of cars, dress and food. The classroom was transformed into a sea of red, colour, music and Chinese aromas. Children and staff dressed in Chinese red and/or …

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Fr Brian’s work in Glenstal Gardens

Gardens, it is said, are a reflection of heaven on earth, and a new book about Glenstal Abbey gardens would seem to emphasise such a view. The Benedictine Community arrived in Glenstal from Belgium in 1927 and Fr Brian Murphy began to carry out restoration work in the garden in 1986. Now he has defined his life’s work in the garden, by writing an illustrated history of Glenstal Abbey Gardens in a new book. Although in County Limerick, Glenstal Abbey was home to Fr Bernard O’Dea from Inagh, who was the first Irish monk to join the Benedictine community at Glenstal, after it had been founded by the Belgian monks from Mardesous Abbey in Belgium in 1927. He became the first prior at Glenstal and, to this day, several members of its community are from County Clare. Fr Murphy’s work is a garden book with a difference, as not only does it engage with many matters of horticultural interest, but …

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The infants of Aylroe cillín remembred

History was made in West Clare last weekend last when mass was celebrated for the first time in Aylroe cillín, the infants burial place on the hill overlooking the Shannon Estuary. The mass was celebrated by retired Mill Hill Missionary, Fr Tom McGrath, a native Labasheeda, who is attached to the Kilmurry McMcMahon-Labasheeda parish. There was a large attendance of locals and people from surrounding areas at the mass, which was at the request of the landowner, Professor Michael Hayes, who organised it with Pat Clancy. All were welcomed to the mass by Fr McGrath, who spent 40 years with the Mill Hill Missionary Fathers in western Kenya. The cillín, or chidren’s burial ground on the Hill of Aylroe, contains in excess of 100 children’s graves, all unidentified, going back centuries. The ground is overgrown with gorse and furze and is overlooking the River Shannon. Fr McGrath thanked the attendance and had special prayers for the unbaptised children, the forgotten …

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