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Annual Duck Race in Castlecoote



The annual Castlecoote Duck Race will take place on Sunday, August 11th at 4 pm. This is a fun evening for all the family so come along and cheer on your duck as they sail up the river at Castlecoote.

  Ducks are €5 each and are on sale locally. Burgers and sausages available on the day – all in aid of Tidy Towns. Thanks to all for supporting Castlecoote Tidy Towns.


Castlerea Agricultural Trade and Craft Show




The Castlerea Agricultural Trade & Craft Show takes place at Castlerea Co-operative Mart on Monday, August 5th. All are welcome.

  For more information, contact show secretaries Sara Sharkey (083-8087917) or Elaine Quinn (086-3010409), email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or check out the Castlerea Show Facebook page.

Coming up Roses



Make sure you make the most of these colourful and fragrant plants in your garden say the experts at Ardcarne Garden Centre

  Sumptuous blooms, delicious fragrance and steeped in history and romance, roses capture all the dreamy beauty of the summer garden. They are also immensely versatile in the garden, from small patio varieties that are ideal for containers, to lofty ramblers that produce cascades of flowers from walls and supports. The popular Floribunda and Hybrid Tea varieties are perfect for planting on their own in beds, but roses also blend easily into mixed borders, especially the David Austin shrub roses which have the old-fashioned rose look and fragrance, combined with long flowering.

  Newer developments in the rose family include the Flower Carpet Roses, which are invaluable for their easy-care nature and months of colour, often from June until November. Look out for a range of fabulous colours within the Flower Carpet range and plant in large groups of the same variety to make a showy impact.

 If you fancy the idea of planting some roses in your garden now is an ideal time as most are in flower – so you can see exactly what the flowers are like. Make sure you treat them to plenty of compost or Westland Farmyard Manure when planting, keep them well watered, especially during the first summer and look forward to years, or even generations of flowers!









Miriam for ‘International Miss Macra’



Miriam Hastings of South Roscommon Macra na Feirme will represent Roscommon in this year’s International Miss Macra Festival. The festival will take place in Thurles over the August Bank Holiday weekend from Friday, August 2nd to Monday, August 5th.

  Miriam is a native of Muckloon, Ballyforan, Co. Galway. She is currently working as a primary school teacher in Scoil Bhríde Primary School, Edenderry, Co. Offaly. She has been Club Secretary, County Competitions Officer and North West Queen 2016. She also represented Roscommon in Queen of the Land in 2017.



75th annual Ballygar Carnival promises great family fun




One of Ireland’s longest running carnivals, Ballygar Carnival, will take place from Thursday, August 1st to Tuesday, August 6th in Ballygar, Co. Galway. 

  Each year, people travel from far and wide to experience the great entertainment provided at carnival time in the northeast Galway town. From top entertainers like Mike Denver, Hot Fuss, Smash Hits, Louise Morrissey, Brendan Shine, Ray Lynam, Brave Giant, The Swarbriggs, Linda Martin, Keith and Lorraine and the Original Showband Show to the street entertainment of the Fair Day, Truckin’, walks and talks, and the Carnival Parade, there is something for everyone. 

  This year, as part of the 75th Carnival lecture series, the organisers are delighted to welcome the great storyteller, Eddie Lenihan, along with local historians and authors.

  Murray’s Amusements will also be in Ballygar nightly from 7.30 pm and from 2 pm on Sunday and Monday.

  Ballygar Carnival promises to be a really enjoyable event for all the family so come along, tell your friends and join in the celebrations!

  Check out Ballygar Carnival on Facebook for more information on times and for updates. Ballygar Carnival is also on Instagram so follow our page and use the #ballygarcarnival to share the carnival experience with us. The organisers look forward to seeing you there!

Great line-up for 2019 O’Carolan Harp Festival


The O’Carolan Harp Festival will return to Keadue this August Bank Holiday with a wide range of events taking place from Friday, August 2nd to Monday, August 5th.

  Deputy Eugene Murphy will perform the official opening of this year’s O’Carolan Harp Festival at 3.30 pm on Sunday, August 4th.    

  The popular festival will kick off with a Ceili in St. Ronan’s Hall at 10 pm on Friday, August 2nd with music by Rise The Dust.

  Saturday, August 3rd will see Harp competitions taking place from 10.30 am ahead of a Family Fun Day which begins at 2 pm. Family Fun Day promises to be a brilliant day for the whole family to enjoy with events including football, bouncy castles and loads of other surprises.

  15-18 years and Senior Harp competitions will commence at 2.30 on Saturday. Then, at 9 pm, Beezneez Theatre Company will stage ‘An Ordinary Man’ at St. Ronan’s Hall. This is a night of theatre not to be missed!

  Sunday, August 4th is another busy day of events at the O’Carolan Harp Festival, beginning with the opening of crafts, foods and arts displays at 2.30 pm in O’Carolan Heritage Park.

  The Festival Parade, led by the Raheen Pipe Band from Elphin, will take place at 3 pm from the Church car park. This will be a sample of the cultural, business, voluntary and everyday life of the region and will pass St. Ronan’s Hall.

  There will then be music from the GigRig at St. Ronan’s Hall with ‘Men of the West’ featuring Stephen Doherty, David Doocey and Pat Coyne from 4.30 pm.

  One of the highlights of the festival will take place at 9 pm in St. Ronan’s Hall. Téada will perform with Seamus Begley, another event not to be missed!

  On Monday, August 5th there will be a visit to O’Carolan’s grave at Kilronan Cemetery where there will be a laying of a wreath.

  At 12 pm, Jody Moylan will present a lecture in Kilronan Castle entitled ‘Roderic O’Conor’, about a Roscommon-born artist of the same name who enjoyed international fame.

  At 3 pm there will be music, song and dance with youth members of Keadue CCE while at 4 pm, Rakish will be live from Heritage Park with traditional Irish, folk and country music. Admission free.

  Finally, at 7 pm on Monday, the internationally-renowned Door Dancing competition will take place with music by Liam Purcell and friends.

  For more information or to book tickets to this year’s O’Carolan Harp Festival, contact:
Harp Secretary (087-7745878),
email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., or log on to www.ocarolanharpfestival.ie.



Gala Family Picnic Day at Donamon Castle this Sunday


The Annual Family Picnic Day at Donamon Castle take place on this Sunday, 28th of July. It will commence with Mass in the church at 12 noon. This is a very special year for this historic castle, as it is the 80th anniversary of the arrival of the Divine Word Missionaries in Donamon.

  In the year 1939, Fr. Ignatius Huelmeier and three Brothers took up residence in a very run-down building with broken windows and sparse furniture – but with help from the neighbours and other sources they persisted and eventually got the novitiate up and running.

  This year is also very special as it is the 25th anniversary of the holding of the Annual Family Picnic Day on the grounds. It was spearheaded by the late Fr. Shane Fitzgerald SVD and comprised of five local people, Sean Beirne, Bert Curley, John Kelly, Buddy Raftery and Seamus Ward. Funds generated by the Picnic Day go to help with the maintenance of the castle, which dates back to 1150.

  To mark this special occasion, the Mass will feature singer and harpist Annette Griffin (of Ashford Castle fame) accompanied by John Staunton as well as a performance by the Castlerea Brass & Reed Band.

  Following Mass, there is a fun-filled day planned, with entertainment and events to suit all the family. From 1 pm, we will have music from The Castlerea Brass & Reed Band, Bill Haugh, Patsy McCaul Band, No Regrets, Celtic Cru, Larissa Tormey – while Jake Carter, and Mick Flavin and Carmel McLoughlin with the Ryan Turner Band will be headlining. An auction will also be held and there will be a display of Irish dancing from the Duggan School of Dance. 

  All through the day there will be a variety of events, including an array of eagles, a display of fish and fauna by Inland Fisheries, clown, bouncy castles, pony rides, train rides, book stall and cuddly toys, flower stand and tours of the castle itself.

  To mark the 80th anniversary a special video has been produced by Kairos and will be shown in one of the tents throughout the day.

  The refreshment tent will have tea/coffee, sandwiches, hot dogs, sweets, ice cream and soft drinks on offer. 

  The grand raffle will be held towards the end of the day at approximately 6 pm with a top prize of €1,500 and other good cash prizes. Many spot prizes can be won on the day.

  This day is possible only due to the dedication of many people including the hard-working committee, the stewards and helpers, generous sponsors, and help from agencies such as Roscommon County Council, An Garda Siochana, Civil Defence, Kilbegnet Development Committee Rural Social Scheme, Roscommon LEADER Group and many others too numerous to mention.

  The Divine Word Missionaries and the committee extend a very warm welcome to everyone to come and enjoy this great occasion. You can bring along your own picnic or barbeque to have on the lawn. Tickets for the grand raffle will be available at the sales stand.

  Our resident MC for the day Danny Burke will ensure that everyone is informed of all the events. Of course we hope that the weather will be favourable and that everyone will have a day to remember – so mark this date in your diary! Admission and parking is free.


Largest ever prize fund at Castlerea Agricultural Show!



At the recent launch in McGourty’s Bar in Castlerea, the Castlerea Agricultural Trade & Craft Show committee announced that this year will feature its largest ever prize fund, totalling €23,000.

  Taking place in the grounds of Castlerea Livestock Mart on Monday, August 5th, the show will feature a wide range of cattle, sheep, horse, pony, donkey, dog, goat and pets corner showing classes as well as home produce, crafts, fruit, vegetable and floral competitions. Prize money for all classes will be paid on the day.

  The show grows in scale year-on-year and will feature vintage car and tractor exhibits and an on-site petting zoo. Entertainment will be provided throughout the day by the Castlerea Brass & Reed Band, Eamon Kennedy, Slim Attraction, Seamus Moore and Celtic Crú.

  The prize fund for the cattle showing classes is €10,600 as well as qualifiers for multiple national championships.

  Across the show grounds, the horse, pony, goat, donkeys, sheep and pets corner rings will feature pedigree and non-pedigree showing options with qualifiers for championships, rosettes, trophies and prize money, all up for contention.

  Entry fees start from just €3. While entries on the day, up to 12 noon, are possible for the dogs and pets competitions, exhibitors for all other classes must submit entries in advance by July 31st.

  Entry forms can be obtained from the Show secretaries Elaine Quinn (086-3010409) and Sara Sharkey (083-8087917)) or the Show office, located in Castlerea Livestock Mart, via the Facebook page: Castlerea Agricultural Show or by emailing: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

  On the day, gates open for exhibitors at 8 am and judging starts from 11.30 am.  




‘Planet Youth’ survey can empower parents




Western Region Drug and Alcohol Task Force community worker, Emmet Major, said the results of a recent Planet Youth survey, which was carried out anonymously among 15 and 16-year-old students at secondary schools in Co. Roscommon, can be used to empower parents and to assist them in setting boundaries for children.

  The survey was adopted from similar research previously carried out in Iceland which was credited with completely transforming teen drinking and substance abuse in that country. The Irish survey also questioned students about their social media habits and time spent on screen.

  The Western Region Drug and Alcohol Task Force will now use the results of the survey to take proactive steps in order to raise awareness among parents and teenagers.

  Emmet Major said: “The parents of children starting secondary school in September will get a booklet and a fridge magnet (from the Western Region Drug and Alcohol Task Force steering committee) that will have guidelines around bedtimes for young people, screen time for young people, around alcohol use, sports and hobbies. It’s hoped that that will keep parents roughly on the same page.
            “We could see from the survey that half of the teenagers surveyed aren’t getting enough sleep, half them are overusing screens, half aren’t getting enough physical activity and so on.

  “The theory is that if the parents of these students are getting the same information it’s a lot easier to say ‘Everybody’s going to bed at nine o’clock so that’s when you go’. That’s a nice simple step to try and get parents working together if you like. Ultimately what we’d be hoping to get is a little more cooperation between parents.

  “If we work together as parents we can improve the situation here not just around alcohol but in all sorts of ways. That’s the first obvious starting point for this – to try and get parents cooperating more closely together. In time what we’ll be trying to do is get more funding for sports and hobbies”.

  He added that the committee may look at the possibility of a ‘Planet Youth School’ flag system, much like the Green Flag rewards system currently in place in primary education.

  “In this survey there is stuff about drugs and alcohol but there’s also other stuff about their lives in general. If you can address that other stuff it can reduce problems with substance abuse and mental health issues and suicide.

  “Iceland went from twenty years ago having a very visible substance abuse problem among young people. It was a political issue really because it was so obvious and public. Now they have no problem with it or practically none”.

  In 1998, the Icelandic survey showed that a whopping 42% of 15 and 16-year-olds claimed to have been drunk in the month previous. By 2016 that number had plummeted to just 5%. The percentage of those who said they had used cannabis also fell 10% in that time (17% to 7%) while those smoking cigarettes fell from 23% to 3%.

  The secret, according to those who developed the survey, was addressing the risk and protective factors around substance abuse. It meant finding out more about what makes young people tick. Emmet and his colleagues, with the help of parents across the county, will be hoping for similar results in Roscommon.

  The full results of the surveys of Roscommon and Mayo are available at www.planetyouth.ie.




Festival fever this week in Castlerea and Rooskey!




It’s Festival season here in Co. Roscommon as Castlerea and Rooskey play host to two very popular local events.

  This year’s Castlerea Rose Festival begins this Sunday (28th) and continues until Sunday, August 4th with a wide range of attractions which visitors of all ages can enjoy.

  The festival will begin on Sunday, 28th with the ever-popular Opening Parade, which features some famous inflatables!

  Castlerea Rose Festival Chairman, John Mulligan, told the Roscommon People recently that following the overwhelming success of last year’s event it was decided to continue with a similar format for this year’s event.

  Among the highlights at this year’s Rose Festival is an open-air concert with Country Music star Michael English at The Fairgreen on Thursday, August 1st.

  There are plenty of other attractions too including Pig Racing followed by a BBQ and renowned tribute band ‘Cash Returns’ on Friday, August 2nd and Funzone and Funky Kiddies’ Disco on Saturday, August 4th.

  The main event of course is the Rose Selection Night which takes place at 9 pm on Saturday, August 3rd with MC Paul Claffey of Midwest Radio.

  The Rooskey Heritage Festival returned on Monday (22nd) and runs until Sunday (28th).

  There are some wonderful events this weekend including music each night and performances not to be missed at The Festival Marquee. Renowned playwright Seamus O’Rourke will also be there on Friday (July 26th) with his acclaimed one-man play ‘Padraig Potts’ Guide to Walking’.

  Saturday and Sunday will see a Food and Craft Village as well as plenty of fun for the whole family to enjoy.

  For more information, check out www.rooskeyheritagefestival.com for details.

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