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Moneygall Prepares For Obama Visit

J. Austin and son Matthew. Photo courtesy of Irish Independent Newspapers

US President Barack Obama is due to visit his ancestral home in Moneygall, situated on the Tipperary-Offaly border, on Monday May 23rd next, however his visit may be the subject of change, to Sunday 22nd, depending on his busy Irish schedule.

I visited Moneygall village yesterday, to find the locals residents as busy as bees in a  hive, armed with ladders, paint brushes, shovels and power-washers, all engaged in a total revamp of their small hamlet. All locals are intent on ensuring that no stone will be left unturned and all will be ‘Ship Shape and Bristol fashion,’ for when the intense glare of the global media is brought to focus on ‘Obama Land.’

One Tipperary family, are most certainly pulling out all the welcome stops for this highly anticipated homecoming and State visit, with local Jason Austin and his family having  painted their home, in the village, with the Stars and Stripes and the Irish Tricolour.

A continuous stream of tourists and day trippers have already begun to seek out Moneygall. Locals tell of a group of lawyers who arrived visiting from Chicago recently, all boasting connections with President Obama. The CIA and security personnel are currently undertaking their necessary preparatory work and visitors from overseas are beginning to show a distinct tourism interest and appear eager to associate themselves with Obama’s true ancestral Irish roots.

Almost daily now visitors from all over Ireland, are veering from intended destinations anxious to take a peep. When filming  in the town recently, we ran into well known photographer Paddy Phipps, who had travelled from Co Longford and the equally well known Fionán O’Driscoll, member and PRO of the Waterford Male Voice Choir, who had travelled from Waterford.

United States Ambassador to Ireland and Chairman Emeritus of the Pittsburgh Steelers football team Mr Dan Rooney has also gifted the village some Pittsburgh Steelers memorabilia for the occassion.

Moneygall village presently offers a rare opportunity to watch a small, yet lively community, passionately engaged in their preparations for when the worlds spotlight focuses brightly on their community and historical connection. So if you have a chance to visit Moneygall in the weeks ahead, do so and observe at first hand contented people, attired in paint splattered overalls, all playing their part in ‘Welcome Home Mr President’ preparations, and demonstrating what is needed to take us out of our financial recession.

Regrettably, nationally, republican and other members of the far-left fringe of ‘career protesters,’ namely Republican Sinn Féin, the new kids on the block Éirígí and People before Profit, latter organisations with all the problems and no solutions, will be attempting to attract attention for themselves by protesting at all our up and coming high profile visits by heads of State.  Hopefully all press cameras will remain pointed in the opposite direction. I believe it was John Steinbeck sums it up when he said, “It is the nature of a man as he grows older, to protest against change, particularly changes for the better.  A dying people tolerates the present, rejects the future, and finds its satisfactions in past greatness and half remembered glory

Watch out for our short video on Moneygall, to be uploaded soon on this site.

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