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Successful Ageing In Thurles To Run Tea Dance

Thurles Community Garda Officer Mr Chris Verling, reports:-

positive-ageing-week-poster-2015Beltaine or Beltane, the Anglicised name for the Gaelic Festival of Bealtaine (Irish for the month of May), takes place this month; marking the halfway period between the Spring Equinox and the Summer Solstice.

To celebrate ‘Bealtaine’, while simultaneously helping elderly people to achieve their optimum physical, cognitive and mental health, as well as maximising their engagement in life; on Wednesday next, May 4th 2016 a “Tea Dance” will take place at an event run and organized by the local charity “Successful Ageing Thurles”.

This “Bealtaine Tea Dance” will take place at the Anner Hotel, Dublin Road, Thurles, from 2.00pm5.00pm and all elderly people in our community, wishing to attend, are being asked to please R.S.V.P. Thurles Library Tel: (0504) – 29720 or Mr Michael Wright Mobile Tel: (083) 3581304(R.S.V.P required solely to ensure there is tea and a biscuit for everyone.)

Note: Admission to all elderly members within our community is totally free, including the music and light refreshments being provided during the course of this most enjoyable of annual Thurles events.

So all you young people out there, inform and check with your elderly parents, elderly friends, relatives not forgetting elderly neighbours. Help to assist them in sending their R.S.V.P.’s; latter indicating their intention to attend, shake that leg, meet, greet, laugh, chat or limply listen to the music, while sharing in this most pleasurable of ‘Bealtaine Festival’ afternoon events.

Remember Wednesday next, May 4th 2016.


Plans Revealed For St. Patrick’s Day Parade 2016

The Thurles St. Patrick’s Day Committee launched plans recently for the Thurles parade, which will take place on March 17th in Liberty Square at 4:00pm. We understand that in attendance at the launch were the main sponsor of this annual event Mr Michael Carew (Michael’s Jewellers), Westgate, Thurles; together with Mr John Tarpey (Manager Thurles Supermacs). An appeal also was issued for more voluntary stewards to participate on the day and same have been asked to contact the Chief Steward Mr Pat Carey at Tel: 0872797757, confirming their availability.

This year’s parade, which starts from LIDL carpark in Abbey Road Thurles at 3.45pm, will feature musical entertainment in two areas; Liberty Square, starting at 2:00pm and provided by provided by the ‘Jim O’ The Mills Traditional Irish Group’; while in the new Thurles Town Park Bandstand the Thurles Silver Band will give further renditions of well known Irish musical favourites.

Parade Entries
Places in this year’s parade are still available for those wishing to enter and same will remain open up until the final day of the event. The Committee are also requesting that all Parade Entrants have clearly visible identification displayed, thus indicating their group to reviewers and onlookers alike. It is advised that a short written account of each participating groups activities be provided to committee members on the reviewing stand, prior to the start of this event.

A special prize of a 1ft high, Bronze Statue of Michael Collins in uniform, will be on offer to the ‘Best 1916 Commemorative Float’; same kindly donated by Michael’s Jewellers, Westgate, Thurles.

Reptile Zoo
A reptile zoo will also be on display on the east side of Liberty Square again this year and visitors will be permitted to “get up close and personal” with at least some of the unusual tetrapod animals, expected to be on display.

Other attractions are understood to include a Climbing Wall; an exhibition of Vintage Vehicles and a Miniature Train for use by children and accompanying adults.

Best Dressed Shop Window
Thurles St. Patrick’s Day Committee are inviting all shops to take part in the ‘Best Dressed Shop Window Display’ for 2016, which will incorporate added prizes for the ‘Best Dressed Window Runner-Up’; ‘Best Dressed Window”; ‘Best Traditional Window; and ‘Best Traditional Window Runner-Up’. The winners of the Best Dressed Windows will be announced on the 17th March at the parade, together with the winners of all the best entries in the 2016 parade.  Note: This year awards ceremony to be held in The Source on the 21st March at 7.30pm for the winners in all of the categories.

Thurles St.Patrick’s Day Committee would like to thank and gratefully acknowledge the continued support of their sponsors, without whose help they would be unable to stage St. Patrick’s Day Parade 2016.

So do join in the celebrations and help make St. Patrick’s Day 2016, here in Thurles, a special occasion to remember.


New Comedy Play Premiers In Upperchurch, Tipperary

A new comedy stage play, “When Are You Going Back”, will get it’s first public showing in Upperchurch next weekend, with performances on Friday 18th and Saturday 19th at 8.00 pm each night. The play was written by American Gerry Britt, whose ancestors came from Drombane, and will be performed by the local ‘Upland Players’.


Cast and crew of the comedy “When Are You Going Back” which will be staged next weekend in Upperchurch. Back Row: (L. to R.)  Jim Ryan, Willie Shanahan, Joanne Ryan, Paddy Bourke, Eileen Ryan, Joe O’Dwyer, Paraic Fahey. Middle Row: Teresa Corbett, Jodie Kennedy, Sinead O’Dwyer. Front Row: Billy Clancy, Mary Harrington.

The story describes the adventures of a naive American tourist who arrives in Upperchurch to trace his roots. The main local centre of activity, Fogarty’s pub, is run by two sisters. The husband of one of them is somewhat under pressure running the business and things get very difficult following visits from the ‘Tax Man’ and a ‘Smoking Inspector’ who are both trying to close the pub. The American is unwittingly caught up in the crisis. An array of local characters and customers with locally familiar traits contribute to the whole confusion.

While the play is primarily a comedy it is interesting to see the whole local pub culture and aspects of rural life through the eyes of a visitor. The problems facing country pubs at present are also adequately demonstrated.

Production Crew
Directors – Mary Harrington and Kae Ryan (The Mill); Producer – Mairead Clancy; Set design – Joe Clancy and P.J. Harrington; Lights – Jack Looby and Thomas Fogarty.

Bobby Ryan (the American tourist)Jim Ryan (Glown); Brian Maher (the local man)Billy Clancy; Paul Shanahan (horse trainer)Ged Kelleher; Nora (his girlfriend)Jodie Kennedy; Seanie Fogarty (the publican)Willie Shanahan; Maureen (his wife)Joanne Ryan; Kathleen Shanahan (her sister)Teresa Hyland Corbett; Eamon Kenny (Revenue Sheriff )Joe O’Dwyer; Joan Clancy (the smoking inspector)Eileen Ryan, (Glown); Paudie Dooley (local genealogist)Richard Ryan, (Ballyboy); Peg (his wife)Nonie Clancy; Second American tourist – Gerry Britt; Pub customers – Pakie Purcell, Brian Harty, Nora Ryan, Sinead O’Dwyer, Paddy Bourke, together with local musicians.


Game Developers Make ‘Trip to Tipp’ For Games Fleadh 2016

Leading game developers, including John Romero, to participate in Thurles LIT/Microsoft event.

litThe organisers of “Games Fleadh”, Ireland’s version of the Oscars for undergraduate game designers and developers will welcome some of the biggest names in the gaming industry as they gather at the Limerick Institute of Technology (LIT) campus here in Thurles on March 9th. They will participate in Games Fleadh 2016, an all-island games design and development competition for third-level students.

Supported by Microsoft Ireland, EA Games, Ubisoft and the Irish Computer Society, the 13th annual Games Fleadh will feature the Game Studio Tower Defence competition and Robocode.

Event organisers say the Irish games design and development sector has recently enjoyed strong growth as evidenced by job announcements from EA, Black Shamrock and ZeniMax, as well as the relocation from Silicon Valley to Galway of ‘Romero Games‘.

“This high profile move to Ireland by John and Brenda Romero; whose title credits include ‘Doom’, ‘Dangerous Dave’, ‘Quake’, ‘Wizardry’ and ‘The Mechanic is the Message’, is an endorsement of the potential of this sector to develop. EA have continued to grow their presence in Galway and with the addition of their QA team, are creating job opportunities for Irish game developer graduates. The recent establishment of the Irish game makers association ‘Imirt’ lends further evidence to the growth and optimism in this sector”, said Dr. Liam Noonan, event organiser and lecturer at LIT’s Game Design and Development degree in Thurles at today’s launch of Games Fleadh 2016.

Speaking about Games Fleadh 2016, Dr. Noonan continued, “Games Fleadh is a fantastic networking opportunity for the Irish game development sector and in many ways it is the Game Development Oscars for our undergraduate students on the Island of Ireland.”

Games Fleadh will feature a keynote talk by John Romero as well as talks by industry professionals from EA, Microsoft and Fungus Games. This year, a new innovation sees the inclusion of start-up sessions, which will provide insight from recently formed Irish start-ups in the game design and development sector.

Games Fleadh will also host a number of competitions on the day including an EA FIFA 2016 and UFC tournaments, with numerous EA titles being provided as prizes for the various competitions. To celebrate the launch of Ubisoft’s Tom Clancy’s ‘The Division’ on March 8th, the game will be playable at Games Fleadh. Once gamers have had a chance to play, developers at Ubisoft Massive Entertainment will answer any questions and feedback on comments about ‘The Division’. There will also be some great Tom Clancy’s ‘The Division’ prizes in the Games Fleadh raffle.

Commenting ahead of the event, EA Ireland said, “We at EA look forward to meeting the many games design and development students from across Ireland at LIT Games Fleadh 2016 and sharing our experiences in the design and development of future titles. We welcome the opportunity to support game development competitions in Ireland and to work with the various 3rd level Institutions to ensure we have talented graduates to avail of the many career opportunities in this sector.”

Senior PR Manager Stefan McGarry from Ubisoft said, “We are delighted that Tom Clancy’s ‘The Division’ will feature at this year’s Games Fleadh. It’s a great showcase for new games design and development, and we’re very pleased to be supporting such talent.”

Games Fleadh 2016 is open to the public for free. Online registration is available at www.gamesfleadh.ie. For more visit www.twitter.com/gamesfleadh.


Thurles Musical Society Will Stage ‘Evita’

Evita-PosterMulti award winning Thurles Musical Society (TMS) will stage the well known and popular hit musical Evita’ in The Premier Hall, here in Thurles from Tuesday March 15thSaturday March 19th inclusive.

A sixty strong cast has been in rehearsals since early in January, under the watchful eye of Director David Hennessy, Musical Director Mary Rose McNally, Choreographer Debbie Kieran, and Dance Captain Michelle O’Connell.  All cast members are set for the stage with great excitement abounding in advance of the opening night, which will be a benefit night for the Thurles Presentation Secondary School’s current Astro Turf project.

Musical Composers & Principle Cast Membership
This hit musical ‘Evita’ was composed and written by the renowned duo, Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice and audiences will recognize instantly the hit songs such as ‘Don’t Cry for me Argentina’, ‘Another Suitcase in Another Hall’ and ‘Where Do We Go From Here’ and many more.

‘Evita’ tells the story of Eva Duarte, an ambitious young girl from a modest background, who hypnotized the nation of Argentina in the 1930s/40s. Seen by some as a hugely inspirational lady and for others, a woman to be feared and despised; she worked tirelessly against the rich and middle classes, attempting to destroy them. Eva was much famed throughout the world for her beauty and style. This reputation was matched only by this infamous woman’s pettiness and her endless lust for power. Through carefully planned relationships and a disregard for the opinions of others, she quickly rose in social ranks to become Argentina’s ‘First Lady’. This story translates easily to a powerful retelling, through beautiful music and truly gripping drama on stage.

Ché, a character based on the revolutionary Ché Guevara, will be played by Michael McLoughlin, who returns to the stage with TMS having played the lead role in Jekyll and Hyde among many other leading parts. Barry Derby will amuse audiences in the role of ‘Magaldi’, a musician who aids fifteen-year-old Eva on her search for fame. (‘On This Night of a Thousand Stars’ is his big number).

Peron is played by the award winning Cathal O’Donoghue who won ‘Best Comedian’ in last years ‘AIMS Awards’, while the vastly experienced and equally decorated Cathy Keane will plays the lead role of Evita. The relationship between protagonist, Eva, and political leader, Juan Peron, was scandalous, questionable, dynamic and romantic – an aspect that is easily achieved by this Thurles pair, who coincidently also played opposite each other in Tipperary Musical Society’s ‘High Society’ just a few years ago.

Kate Lineen plays the part of the ‘Mistress’ while Eva’s family members are played by no strangers to successful theatre; Olwyn Grogan, Linda Ryan, Frank Tuohy, Danielle Martin and Marie Therese Kirby.

The ‘Generals’ featuring in Peron’s army are played by the well known and experienced members; John Scott, Noel Dundon, Frank Tuohy, Finbarr Shelly and Gerard O’Hagan.

As ‘Evita’ requires a chorus that represents a nation, the cast will comprise both adults and children and our magnificent kids have been working hard to ensure readiness for ‘Opening Night’. Younger members are drawn from schools from the parish and surrounding areas and are understandably very excited about ‘Evita’.

The Booking Office in Hickey’s Pharmacy, Liberty Square, Thurles opens from Tuesday March 8th right through the running of the this production. Tickets cost €20 with concessions for OAPS on Wednesday at €10. All tickets for the Tuesday evening performance also cost €20. The show commences at 8:15pm.  You may of course Telephone: 085-2868726 to book your seat.

Don’t miss this chance to see a magnificent piece of International Musical Theatre performed locally here on your own doorstep.