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Successsful Midsummer's Day with the Stars

The stars – and the fans ­– were out in force at Roscommon Racecourse on Sunday when a very successful ‘Midsummer’s Day with the Stars’ concert was staged.

  Thousands of revellers were present from around lunchtime for a concert which continued until just after 7 pm.

  Sixteen stars, including Nathan Carter, Mike Denver and Jimmy Buckley, entertained the fans.

  Pleasant weather conditions and excellent facilities for young and old added to the atmosphere.

  Promoter Joe Finnegan thanked all who helped make the event such a success – not least the enthusiastic fans!

Scouting success story


“Not everyone is into sport, even though I’m mad into it myself!”

  So said Evonne McLoughlin when she spoke to the Roscommon People recently about the remarkably successful birth of a Scouts movement in the general Kilglass/Tarmonbarry area.

  Evonne and Bryan McLoughlin from Kilglass are the couple who kick-started this good news story.

  They felt that more activities and support was needed for young children in the area. Not everyone is ‘into’ sport, as Evonne puts it – and setting up a Scouts presence in the area was seen as something worth trying.

  The initial exploratory meeting took place in early 2014, and now, after much hard work and volunteering, almost fifty children attended a Scouts Investiture just over a week ago.

  Once they’d had the initial idea, Bryan and Evonne McLoughlin received assistance from Noel Leahy, the Scouting Support Officer in Connacht; County Chairman Charlie Gibbons; Michelle O’Donnell from Ballinamore and Tom Gill from Ballyboro Scouts.

  A public meeting was held in February 2014 in Kilglass GAA Clubhouse to try to establish the level of interest in the parish and beyond regarding setting up a Scout Group. At this meeting the need for volunteers was also emphasised.

  There was a positive response and the decision was taken to proceed. Training for leaders commenced in May 2014 and a Leader Skills Training Day took place in Lough Keel, Forest Park, Boyle.

  On Tuesday, September 30th, 2014 the first ever Scout Group commenced in Kilglass/Tarmonbarry area at Tommy Gaffney’s Shannon River Adventure Centre in Drumminamore.

  Since then, the new Scouts have met on a weekly basis and been on several exciting trips in the locality.

  The Kilglass/Tarmonbarry Scouts group is divided into three age categories – Beaver Scouts: 6-8 years; Cub Scouts: 9-11 years; Scouts: 12-15 years.  

  Activities include camp, games, stories, songs and skills. Badges are given to encourage participation in activities and to recognise individual achievements.

  They meet at the Shannon River Adventure Centre for an hour and a half every Tuesday evening (from 6.30 pm).

  “It’s a big commitment, but it’s very rewarding” says Evonne McLoughlin, who added that the relatively new group would welcome a helping hand from new volunteers.

  Anyone interested in joining up as a volunteer (or in enquiring about enlisting a child) should contact Bryan McLoughlin on 086-4107196 (or any of the other leaders).

  Meanwhile, imagine the sense of joy and celebration on Friday, June 19 last when up to 50 Scouts (as well as leaders) attended an Investiture ceremony.

  Truly a good news story! 

Launch of Rooskey Heritage Festival

The inaugural Rooskey Heritage Festival will be held in the village from Friday, July 24, to Sunday, July 26, with an array of different events included.

  The festival was launched last Friday night in Rooskey Community Centre, where a large crowd of residents, community activists and local politicians gathered to lend their support to the event. 

  As Geraldine Moran, the assistant secretary of the organising committee, told the attendance, Rooskey is one of many villages that has been affected very adversely by the recession.

  While it was once a thriving village, she said, the past decade or so has seen a lot of negative developments, such as the closure of a local hotel and factory, and the Dublin-Sligo bypass being developed.

  This festival is a positive initiative, she said, designed to showcase the village to locals and tourists. Numerous water activities, music, heritage, food and craft events will be held over the course of the weekend.

  Local Independent TD Michael Fitzmaurice, speaking at the launch, said that such events were crucial in keeping rural Ireland afloat.

  “We have to try to keep rural Ireland alive,” he said. “If we come together as a community, we can achieve an awful lot.

  “Show off your area. We have a lot to show in rural Ireland for tourism. Smile and be friendly on the weekend. That is very important.”

  The Cathaoirleach of Roscommon County Council, Cllr. Paddy Kilduff, emphasised the positive aspects of Rooskey.

  “This is a very picturesque village,” he said. “You are lucky at the moment that you have a garda station, hairdresser, barber, shops and pubs.

  “Many villages haven’t that. This is a very active village.”


The driving lesson


The hour had come. The grace period was well and truly over, and it was time to bite the bullet. My destiny had arrived in the form of a Toyota Yaris emblazoned with School of Motoring.

  Thankfully, my instructor turns out to be an affable gentleman and after the niceties and preliminaries have been exchanged, he lets me take the wheel. Look at me all grown up! No matter that I’m sweating like Peter Kay at the Apollo, I can do this!

  Suddenly, an elderly lady appears on the road. I scream inwardly. I am gently encouraged to ease on the brakes so as not to kill the old dear. We do another loop of the housing estate and encounter the same woman. Evidently, she has an issue with footpaths. She angrily signals for me to pass by before resuming her position on the road. I’m so grateful she ignored the LEARNER DRIVER signs plastered all over the car and found the time in her day to give me a heart attack.

  The ordeal is not over. I meet a car coming towards me in a tight space with parked cars either side. Mercifully, he reverses and allows me to pass with all the finesse of a goat behind the wheel. He must have smelt the fear emitting from my pores.

  Given that this first venture was pretty nerve-racking, surely my practise session with SO will be a breeze? Or so I believe until I sit into the driver seat. When did this car become a military tank? I cannot see ANYTHING. Turn on the ignition, he says. I turn on the engine. Much to my surprise, these are not the same thing. R Kelly’s lyrical explanation of the remix to the ignition has proven somewhat useless in this instance.

SO: “Mind that hedge there.”

Me: “What hedge?!”

SO: “The one you’re about to drive into.”

  This is a disaster. If I am unable to see blatantly visible shrubbery, what about kittens? And infants?! Granted, you rarely see a crawling baby let loose in a church car park, but you never know.

  Conk. Conk. Conk. This is not a practise car. This is his baby, and if scratch it, I’m as good as single. I’m wearing out the clutch I know he needs to replace. I’m guzzling the diesel he just bought. The tension is palpable. His mouth says “Drive on, you’re improving!” but his eyes say “Please get as far away from my car as physically possible, you treacherous wench.”

  Move into third gear, he says. I go to fifth for the craic. Not good for the car, it seems. Nothing I do is ever good enough for the car. I think me and the car are headed for Splitsville.

After a solid hour, I have successfully managed to start and stop the vehicle without dire consequence and our relationship has remained intact. For now. Sure didn’t Romeo and Juliet actually part ways due to her inability to perform hill starts and manoeuvre the Jack Lynch Tunnel?

Síle is Celebrity Judge for SuperValu Ladies Day

Prize fund of almost €3,000 on Monday July 6

TV and radio presenter Síle Seoige will be the celebrity judge at the SuperValu Ladies Day at Roscommon Racecourse on Monday July 6th. Six SuperValu shops in the region have come together to sponsor the annual Ladies Day event that attracts large crowds every year.

The winner of the best dressed competition will walk away with a top prize of €2,000, while the nine runners-up will each receive €100.

Judge Síle Seoige explained what she will be looking for from the entrants. “I love colour so I will definitely be on the lookout for bright summery outfits that really catch the eye or a timeless, classic outfit with a splash of colour.

The most important thing to remember is to wear something that suits your body shape and your colouring. Accessories are really important too when it comes to finishing off your look and a hat or a headpiece really is a must.

” Shane Fleming, SuperValu, Roscommon said: “SuperValu shops enjoy a close relationship with our communities and as Roscommon Racecourse has built up such a strong bond with the local public, our sponsorship of SuperValu Ladies Day was an obvious fit.

With almost €3,000 on offer, we are hoping for a huge turnout of elegant ladies on July 6th, vying to win the cash prizes.”

The seven-race flat card goes to post at approx. 5.45 pm.

Roscommon Racecourse is ready for Ireland’s biggest country music event!

Join the stars this Sunday!

Final preparations are underway for the ‘Midsummer’s Day with the Stars’ which will be staged at the Lenebane Racetrack in Roscommon town this weekend.

  Thousands are expected to attend the event which will kick off at 1.30 pm this Sunday afternoon.

  The show, which is the biggest of its kind in Ireland, will see 16 of the country’s top entertainers perform on a magnificent stage which includes two giant video screens.

  Event organisers have confirmed to the Roscommon People that full bar and catering facilities will be available on-site.

  It is expected that many visitors from across the country and from Europe will avail of the overnight camping facilities. The site will also include ample free car parking for cars and buses.

  Once again this year the show will have a strong family theme with a special children’s play area on site and all children under 12 accompanied by an adult will be admitted free.

  Patrons are being advised to purchase their tickets in advance even though it is expected that some will be available at the main gate on the day (these will be sold on a first-come first-served basis).

  Locally in Roscommon tickets can be purchased in ETL Roscommon town, Cahill’s SuperValue in Castlerea, Towey’s in Ballaghaderreen, McDonagh’s Topaz in Boyle, Cullen’s Topaz in Lanesborough and Mulvey’s in Carrick-on-Shannon.

Dylan’s play date at C&L plex on Friday 5th July

C&L plex, in conjunction with ‘Dylan’s Path to Walk,’ are hosting a fundraiser for Ballaghaderreen native Dylan Towey in the play area 'C&L plex', Centre Point Retail Park, Roscommon on Friday 3rd July.

  All proceeds from the admissions to 'minnows' on that day will go to Dylan, who suffers from Cerebral Palsy. The more kids that come and play, the more money raised for this very worthy cause.

  There will be one flat rate on Friday 3rd July of only €5 per child per 90 minutes of play! All you have to do is come along to ‘minnows’ where you can make a play date or meet new friends. This is ‘Dylan’s play date and everyone is invited”

  Dylan Towey is a happy, fun loving 4-year-old boy from Ballaghaderreen, Co. Roscommon. Dylan has Cerebral Palsy that mainly affects his legs but his arms are also affected to a lesser extent.

  He was born 12 weeks early at which stage it was established he had a number of strokes before he was born. He spent 11 weeks in hospital during which he had a difficult time. He had two infections and required seven blood transfusions. 

  Unfortunately his premature birth, strokes and difficult time in hospital left Dylan with permanent damage. He was officially diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy at 17-months old. Despite all these challenges he has achieved so much....more than a lot of doctors expected of him!

  He uses a ‘kaye walker’ to walk short distances but cannot stand or walk unaided. He has been accepted for life changing SDR surgery in the USA that will reduce the spasticity in his legs and allow him the opportunity to learn how to walk independently.

  Please come out and support this worthy cause on Friday 5th July at C&L plex in Roscommon.

Details of Boyle Arts Festival to be unveiled

Details of a very exciting and diverse event will soon be announced when Boyle Arts Festival launch the official programme for their 26th annual Arts Festival in a few weeks’ time.

  The nationally renowned festival will kick off on Thursday, July 23rd and continue until Saturday, August 1st. The programme is already bursting at the seams with over fifty events, including an eclectic mix of visual arts, music, drama, film, comedy, workshops, storytelling, children’s events, readings and much more!

  The Boyle Arts Festival office, situated beside Marian’s on Bridge Street, will be open from mid-July. Tickets for a selection of events will be available to purchase in advance on www.eventbrite.ie.

  As always, the centrepiece of Boyle Arts Festival is the main visual Exhibition, housed in the beautifully restored King House. Several other exhibitions, including the highly acclaimed Local Artists exhibition, will take place during the festival and details will be available in the programme.

  BAF 2015 will conclude on Saturday, August 1st with a fantastic gig by The Knotty String Band in Daly’s Storehouse.

  For more information on Boyle Arts Festival 2015 please go to www.boylearts.com, www.eventbrite.ie or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Alternatively you can contact 071-9663085 or follow us on Facebook.

Cynic Gal - Zombie Nation

Hello, my name is Shelly and I am a netaholic. (Hi Shelly.) This week, I am focusing on a nationwide epidemic as well as a personal addiction: the Internet. People say the things that aggravate you the most tend to be your own fatal flaws. Case in point; I cannot stand to see two people sit opposite one another and stare at their phones and yet, when SO berates me for the very same crime, I retaliate with “I’m just checking my notifications, GAWD”. (Actually, I was Googling the return date of Grey’s Anatomy but sssshhhh). In an age where the earth spins quicker than ink can dry, we have become fixated with our news feeds and obtaining information as soon as is humanly possible. Even as I write this, I punctuate my paragraphs with frequent check-ups of Facebook, Snapchat and WhatsApp. I have purposely refused the Wi-Fi code to resist the lure of inane memes and holiday pictures of a virtual stranger. The bookmark has resided on page 76 of We Need to Talk About Kevin for the past six months due to my drastically reduced attention span. We need to talk about obsession. People are trying so hard to simulate real-life experiences via their personal screens. I can understand the ability to record television shows from your mobile but do we really need an app for popping bubble wrap? The Nintendo Wii remains my most vexatious pet peeve; why would I pretend to play tennis in my sitting-room when I could be outdoors ACTUALLY PLAYING TENNIS? From the tech savvy Apple enthusiast to the father who is struggling to grapple with his touch screen, we are all on a slippery slope to a world of hollow communication and faux friendships. The fears of technology superceding human interaction are echoed in the futuristic Oscar-winning film Her, wherein a man develops feelings for a computer operating system. (Even as an autobot, Scarlett Johansson is more alluring than us mere mortals.) Is this far-fetched science fiction or a glimpse at eventuality? Are we going to abandon Tinder and force ourselves on Siri, mistaking automated responses for affection? There should be a general rule for Facebook and other such social platforms; first of all, delete anybody you wouldn’t say hello to on the street. Send a text to say happy birthday instead of an online photo collage; it shows you care without broadcasting it to the nation. Above all else, do not lament the life you are not leading; people post their highlights, not their blooper reel. We don’t create a status for the test we failed or the friendships that did not last. The internet is a fantastical existence and we should not aspire to dwell within its twisted realms. Your mother was right. Get off that effin’ phone!

The Prodigal Sun

Welcome back, summer! God how I've missed you...I think...although, you do seem a little hotter than usual. And was it always this...sticky?

  Every year, the exact same phenomenon. You embrace the sunshine and bask in all its lustrous glory...for about ten minutes. And then you realise how much you hate the sun. And how ill-equipped your pale Irish body is to deal with its murderous beams.

  Let's start with problem number one. Although you have lamented the winter blues, you have also somewhat relished the cosiness and relaxed nature of it all. Translation: Little to no shaving. All of a sudden, summer is upon us and a monthly (or bi-annual?!) chore has become a weekly one and feelings of resentment begin to bubble.

  Black tights are so forgiving but they must be forsaken in this unrelenting heat. You briefly consider adopting a new feminist stance on the matter; after all, bodily hair is au natural and natural can only mean feminine and beautiful, right? Maybe, but you're not yet brave enough to pull a Julia Roberts and go the whole hog. Literally.

  Whether you're a fake tan fan or a tinted moisturiser enthusiast, so much extra care now has to be taken post-shower for fear of resembling Wednesday Adams at the beach.

  And what is with all the flesh? 'Tis the season for lighter layers but when did that constitute bras and shorter than short-shorts? Evidently these are the only options available to females between the ages of 10 and 30.

  Should we all look to Jessica Simpson and the Dukes of Hazzard for inspiration? Is white trash the new black?

  Furthermore, there is the inevitability of the almighty thigh chafe. I read somewhere once that there is a general rule for wearing a miniskirt: if your thighs rub together of their own accord, don't wear a miniskirt.

  First of all, of course I don't have a thigh gap! Second of all, I don't want to wear your stupid ass-skimming skirt anyway Topshop because in this heat, I'll be going through Sudocrem by the bucketload.

  Simply put, it is much harder to look your best in the dreaded humidity. In winter, you can wrap up in adorable earmuffs and look all kinds of accessory chic. In summer, THERE IS NO PLACE FOR ACCESSORIES. You can barely wear rings without swelling up like a pregnant woman and requiring some soap and water action.

  You can also kiss goodbye to having decent hair; even if you manage to endure the blistering heat of a hair straightener, all efforts become futile when you eventually slick it up into a more tolerable updo. The sun does not care for your pretty hairstyle.

  Forgive me if you detect a note of irritation; I have not slept a solid sleep since the bedroom window was opened. The once beloved duvet has now become an instrument of suffocation and all human contact is being kept to an absolute minimum.

PS. All these magazines would want to stop harping on about summer style; I am channelling beached whale until further notice.

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