Saturday 16th September 2006

Proposed Fethard-Saratoga Civic Exchange (Photograph — Civic Exchange)

Mike Cahill, a native of New York, has met with Jennifer Conte and Fiona Farrell, for Saratoga Cornell Cooperative Extension Agency of Saratoga County Equine Program (Saratoga CCE-E) on a proposed Fethard-Saratoga civic exchange. The meeting took place on 6th September, 2006, at the Saratoga CCE Offices at 50 W High Street, Ballston Spa, New York.

Mike, working in conjunction with Fethard & Killusty Community Council, at the meeting, described Fethard as a small Irish town with a big reputation internationally for breeding top thoroughbred horses. Fethard is also well known in Ireland for the nearly intact medieval town walls that surround it — walls that drew the attention of Cromwell's forces during the English Civil War era and yet survived. Similarities were noted between Fethard and Saratoga County, a place synonymous with horse racing in the US and the home of the Saratoga Race Course. Though it has no town walls, Saratoga is dotted with historic structures from the era of the American Revolution. The county was the site of a major British defeat during the war — the Battle of Saratoga.

Jennifer and Fiona discussed the importance of horses and tourism for Saratoga's growing economy, and they touched on the role of Saratoga CCE in promoting the equine industry and agriculture, generally, within the region.

The prospect that Fethard and a Saratoga County town might have an interest in exploring an international civic exchange or sister city relationship for their mutual benefit was discussed. Some potential benefits of an exchange were identified. They included promoting equine and historic tourism between the two towns; sharing information and ideas on economic development; and arranging opportunities for civic, school, and cultural exchanges.

At the end of the meeting it was agreed that another session would be scheduled in the near future so that Mike could make a presentation to Saratoga County town supervisors and other local leaders.

Mike holds a Ph.D. in Anthropology and has worked on child welfare and aging issues for the NYS Office of Children and Family Services. His connection with Fethard comes through his father's side of the family. His paternal great grandfather emigrated from Fethard to Troy, New York in 1867 — as the story goes, because there weren't enough potatoes to go around. His last known relative in Fethard, the relater of this story, died at near ninety in 2000. Mike and several members of his family visited Fethard in 2003. On their arrival, they headed straight to McCarthy's Hotel and introduced themselves. The next day, McCarthy's proprietor took them on a tour of the town, including the old family homestead and the local cemetery, which contained Cahill family burials going back to the 1700s. Mike finds in Fethard a civic pride and an awareness of community that are inspiring. Fethard's website beautifully captures the town and underscores the progressive and dynamic nature of its leadership. If character is all, Fethard should make a stellar town partner.

Fethard & Killusty Community Council
The next meeting of Fethard & Killusty Community Council will take place on Tuesday 19th September at 8.30pm in the Tirry Community Centre.

Too Long In Exile
It’s been almost two decades since Aiden Ward has performed in the Abymill Theatre. A native of Fethard, Aiden cut his musical teeth with the long since disbanded, ‘Space Related’. His flirtation with music became a full-blown affair when he quit the day job as an engineer and took to the road armed with only a guitar and the ability to perform. He has performed all over Europe, averaging about 300 gigs a year, which puts his work rate just about equal to Bob Dylan’s.

Aidan has recorded three albums, two with the band Aiseiri, and lately his first solo album entitled, ‘Water’. He has settled for the moment in Connemara, where he hosts a radio show, fishes on the trawlers and even picks stones to keep mind and body together. He is looking forward to his long overdue homecoming concert in the Abymill at 8pm on Saturday 30th September. He will be joined on the night by several accomplished musicians. Support on the night is from local band, “The Autocats’. Tickets are €10 and can be bought in McCarthy’s.

Fethard & Killusty Community Lotto
The numbers drawn on Wednesday 6th September were 1, 2, 6 and 29. There was no Jackpot winner and two ‘Match 3’ winners who received €75 each:

Diana Stokes, The Square, Fethard;
Canon J. Power, Cashel Road, Fethard.

The three €50 Lucky Dip winners were:

John Whyte, Main Street, Fethard;
John Ryan, St. Patricks Place, Fethard;
Alice Quinn, Burke Street, Fethard.

This weeks Jackpot is €6,900 and the Jackpot sellers prize is €690.

Reunion for friends of Bro Paulinus
Friends of Bro Paul (Bro Paulinus) are planning a reunion in Fethard to coincide with his visit to Fethard on 14th October. Br Paulinus was a teacher at the Patrician Brothers School in the 1960s and was very instrumental in bringing the Kinane Cup to Fethard in 1963. Members of the successful Kinane Cup winning team, and indeed anyone who knows Bro Paul, are asked to contact Denis Burke, Redcity, Fethard, Tel: 052 31854 or Mick Ryan, Monasterevin, Tel: 045 525563, for further details of the reunion.

The Well Golf Society
The Well Golf Society results of last Saturday's outing to Callan are as follows:

Nearest the pin: Martin Fanning and Michael Kenrick.

1st place: Billy Phelan and Bernie Phelan.
2nd place: Brian Mullins and James Coulard.
3rd place: Patsy Hartigan and Aidan Grant.

Our next outing takes place on Sunday October 29th to Cahir Golf Club. Tee off time is 11 o'clock.

Knitting for Pleasure
The Knitting Cafe recommences after the summer break on Tuesday evening, 19th September, at The Green from 7.30pm to 9.30pm or thereabouts. There is a great variety of knitting projects on hand among the group of knitting enthusiasts! Those making a return to knitting after a long absence have contented themselves with producing simple items like scarves but made in the new fashion yarns which turn out really stunning. Some of the group knit for charity, some for First Communion, others for family members and some just for themselves! From evening jackets to Aran, simple sweaters to complicated cardigans, all are there. There is a great exchange of ideas and advice among the group.  So if you haven't yet put in an appearance, don't be shy. You will be made very welcome by Sr. Juliana and her flock of knitters and you can enjoy the chat over a friendly cup of tea.

Fethard Country Market members win awards at Iverk Show
Congratulation to Fethard Country Market members, Dave Curran, Patrick Quinlan, Maura Meaney and Bernie Meaney, on their great success at the recent Iverk Show in Piltown — which is the oldest agricultural show in Ireland.

In the Farm Produce Section, Patrick Quinlan, Lisronagh, was the overall winner and came away with the ‘Goldcrop Cup. In the Jam Section, Maura Meaney, Crampscastle, was presented with the ‘Blackmore Cup’ as overall winner. Dave Curran, Moyglass, winner of twelve first prizes was also recipient of the ‘Billy Breen Cup’ for overall winner in the Vegetable Section. To cap a great day for the group, Bernie Meaney, Crampscastle, was overall winner in the Baking Section and was presented with the ‘Galvin Trophy’.

Fethard Website over 800 visits per day
The August statistics for Fethard.com show that the website has now exceeded an average of over 800 visitors per day, 4,469 pages viewed per day and an average of 23,660 hits per day. These figures show the growing popularity of the Fethard website with emigrants throughout the world. We would like to thank all of you for your continued support and if you have any suggestions on how the site can improve . . . please email your suggestions to: webmaster@fethard.com

Harvest Thanksgiving Service
A Harvest Thanksgiving Service and celebration of  the special 75th Anniversary of the National Council of the Blind will take place in Magorban Church on Sunday 17th September at 3pm.  Everyone welcome.

Thursday Market on the Square
Following the local effort in preserving Fethard’s Market Rights we now have a regular supplier on the Square every Thursday morning. Michael French, for the past few weeks, has sold his large variety of homemade produce with great success on The Square and has now decided to make Fethard a regular venue for selling his produce every Thursday morning.

Fethard GAA Club News
The intermediate hurling semifinal will be played this weekend on Saturday 16th September, please check sports page for time and venue. Fethard play St Marys, the same pairings as 2005, with the winners to play Davins or Ballybacon Grange. Having already met St Marys in the top of the league clash a few weeks ago, we will have to up our performance to advance, the best of luck to all involved.

The Minor B Hurling final takes place this Friday, 15th September, when we play St Marys in our first final appearance since 1996, having beaten Ballybacon Grange in the semifinal on last Friday on a scoreline, Fethard 3-10, Ballybacon Grange 0-7. The team was: J.P. McGrath (Sparagoulea), Ed Sheehan (Woodvale Walk), Liam Ryan (Slievenamon Close), Adrian Lawrence (Woodvale Walk), Declan Doyle (Strylea), Christopher Sheehan (Woodvale Walk), Eoin O’Connell (Coolmoyne), Peter Gough (Killenaule Rd), David Prout (Derryluskin), Alan O’Connor 0-2 (St Patrick’s Place), Richard Gorey 1-0 (Jesuits Walk), Dean Tobin 1-7f (Woodvale Walk), Niall Hayes (Cashel Road), Thomas Gilpin (The Valley), Jack O’Sullivan 1-0 (Main Street). Subs were: Aaron Donovan 1-0 (The Valley), James Kelly (Rathvin), and Thomas O’Connell (Coolmoyne). The very best of look to all involved in the final to be played in Kilsheelan, with a 6.15pm start. Please support these fine bunch of players by your attendance.

 Our Lotto Jackpot €2,000 was not won on the 29th August. The numbers drawn were 8, 14, 21 and 24. We had two match three winners who received €75 each: Ger McCarthy (Kerry St), and Rose Connolly (c/o Cambells Soup Thurles). The €50 Lucky Dip going to our hard-working promoter, Rita Doyle (Woodvale Walk).

Neither was the Jackpot won on 5th September, with two match threes of €75 each to Bobby Dorney (Woodvale Walk), and Joe Hayes (Rathcoole). The €50 Lucky Dip was won by Gabriel Horan (Tinakelly). All tickets were kindly sponsored by Harrington Developments.

Our condolences are at this time with the Maher family (Abbey St) Fethard on the death of Paddy, and with the family of Billy Kelly, Templemore. Go ndeana Dia trocaire orthu.

Fethard Athletic Club
Fethard Athletic Club have recommenced training for the new season. Training takes place every Monday and Wednesday evening, between 6:30pm and 7:30pm, at the Community Field. New members always welcome.

Fethard Juvenile GAA Club
Our under-8 hurlers played in a development blitz last Saturday in Cloneen in glorious sunshine, where many future hurlers were on show. We played three games against, Mullinahone, St Patricks and Ballyneale, winning one, drawing one and losing one. The kids showed great skill and commitment all through with many outstanding performances from the panel on the day — Jack Ward, Dean Dorney, Dean Kenny, Alex O’Donovan, Tom Sheehan, Tom Morgan, Ross McCormack, Jessie McCormack, Liam Quigley, Matthew Lynch, Darragh Lynch and Stephen Crotty. Well done to all involved.

Our under-10s travelled to Cloneen to take on the local team in a hurling and football challenge and did very well on their first night back together after the summer break. They will resume a one-day a week training schedule until November, beginning next week. All parents will be notified by text.

The Juvenile Club will run a level one coaching course in hurling and football in the coming weeks and would request as many parents as possible to put there names forward to participate, as there is a need to help and develop the skills of the kids for future years. Any parent interested should contact Caroline at Tel: 086 1713502. It is a two night programme taking only about six hours and will be run in the GAA field.

Our under-16 hurlers have one game left to play and will need to win if they are to progress in this year’s championship. Our opponents are Killenaule and a date has yet to be finalised. All will be informed when decided.

Well done to our minors who qualified for the south final to be played on Friday 15th September in Kilsheelan at 6.30pm against St Marys. The lads beat Ballybacon last week and with so many of our under-16 playing key roles, the future of hurling is looking bright for our club. Best of luck to all involved.

At the time of writing, there is an under-13 ground hurling blitz taking place on this Saturday. If it goes ahead, all players will be notified in due course.

The Late Paddy Maher
The death has occurred, on Sunday 3rd September, of Mr Patrick ‘Paddy’ Maher, Abbey Street, Fethard. Paddy was a very popular teacher at Fethard Patrician Brothers Secondary School up to his retirement some years ago. On the news of his death, many tributes from overseas have been posted on the Fethard Website:

“Paddy Maher — Some people command respect for a single action. Paddy has the respect of generations for his inspirational teaching. His constant encouragement to seek the non-obvious solution, the surprise argument, to contribute to the debate, no matter how shy you felt. Lessons in more than just the English language, but valuable life tools that I am sure many have found more than useful. I have met few really inspirational people in my life and Mr Maher your passing is noted with utmost respect and more than a little sadness.”  – (Patrick Murphy, Braintree UK)

Requiem Mass took place on Wednesday 6th September in the Augustinian Abbey Fethard, followed by cremation at Newlands Cross Crematorium, Dublin. Our deepest sympathy to his three daughters, Mary, Denise and Martha. May he rest in peace.


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