Monday, April 24, 2017

Major accommodation upgrade at Bardons

A very clever mixture of plush furnishing and quirky accessories has totally changed the accommodation at Bardons, writes Brian Byrne.

Completely revamped under the direction of interior designer Elaine McKenzie-Smith, there are now seven rooms available, including a family suite, each of which has its own colour-based theme.

With the designer's flair and Leanne and Eddie Cross’s vision of what they wanted, Bardons now offers high-end hotel opulence in the kind of a bed-without-breakfast operation anonymity which many travellers like and which allows them to choose from the many breakfast options available in Kilcullen.

The offering is being marketed as ’The Rooms at Bardons', and these are very much upmarket rooms, which will be well appreciated by punters who have booked in for Punchestown this week.

There’s a full report in tomorrow’s Kildare Nationalist. Meantime, a full range of pictures can be seen here.

Last dance lesson for the Teach ... and then there's Sunday

Tonight, Monday 24 April, will be the final night of the Jive lessons which have been running for the past eight weeks in aid of Teach na nDaoine, writes Noel Clare.

Anyone is welcome to come along to the Cross and Passion Assembly Hall at 8.30pm — even if you haven't attended previous lessons.

On Sunday next at 4pm there will be special evening of dancing to finish off the season. There won't be any lessons — it’s just a chance to put into practice all the dance moves — but there will be plenty of people there of all levels who will be willing to give a hand.

Participants are invited to bring along a cake for sharing and there will be refreshments provided, so it promises to be a very enjoyable and sociable evening. The venue again is the Assembly Hall in CPC.

Great night at Tidy Towns Quiz

There was a great turn out at the Table Quiz in support of Kilcullen in Bloom on Friday night last in Fallons, writes Noel Clare. The winning team after a very close contest consisted of Peter O'Sullivan, Peter Bardon, Siobhan Tutty Bardon and Evelyn O'Sullivan.

In second place were Jim and Esther Kiely and Sean and Carol Dillon.

Funds raised will go towards the cost of the summer flowers for 2017.

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Expo 2017: 'You shouldn't miss it'.

Scoil Bhride Principal Anne Flanagan, Expo 2017 committee member Noel Clare, Martin Murphy of Murphy Design & Build, and Markus Pedersen of Markus Landscape & Gardening.
“I’ve lived in Kilcullen all my life and my business is here, but at last year’s Expo I met local businesses that I never knew existed, and made new clients who are still clients today.”

In one sentence, Martin Murphy of Murphy Design & Build summed up what the Kilcullen Expo of 2016 had meant to him, writes Brian Byrne. Speaking at the recent launch of Expo 2017, which takes place on Saturday 6 May, he said to any business that hadn’t been there last year, they shouldn’t miss it for 2017. “I think it’s very important that local businesses work together, because that makes us all stronger, and that’s what it’s all about.”

Ballymore representatives Elizabeth Deegan, Sherri Brennan, Sean Fogarety, Kerry Anne Sullivan, and Samantha Doyle.
The launch evening in Kilcullen Town Hall was well attended, and included this time some delegates from Ballymore Eustace, which is being included in this year’s Kilcullen event. Sponsored by Bank of Ireland as part of its Enterprise Town initiative, more than 100 businesses, sports and social organisations, and school groups took part last year. Some 70 of the total were small businesses.

Bank of Ireland Kilcullen manager Jo McMahon with The Signmaker, Michal Uhruskis.
The launch event was also addressed by Kilcullen BofI manager Jo McMahon, who said the next Expo is a ‘fantastic’ opportunity to showcase what Kilcullen and Ballymore have to offer.

Expo 2017 organising committee member Noel Clare there had been a ‘fantastic buzz’ at last year’s event and that the interaction between people and between the businesses themselves had been ‘extremely positive’. “What was a real eye-opener was to see the range of businesses that were in Kilcullen,” he added. “Especially the smaller ones that are operating maybe from people’s homes, and even if they had been there for some years, we wouldn’t have heard of them without the Expo.”

He also commented on the presentations from the local schools, including the group which had won the Scoil Bhride ‘Bizworld’ enterprise competition.and that the committee had been really amazed at the response from the entire community. “It was networking at its best, people talking to people. It is one thing knowing that a business exists, but I think that when you get to know the people who are behind it, that makes it all much stronger.”

Anne Flanagan, the Principal of Scoil Bhride where the Expo takes place, said the event had also allowed them to showcase the new school and all the activities that went on there. “People found out about many things which they didn’t know, and we found out about local businesses whose services we know use ourselves.”

She said the schools today foster entrepreneurial talent though programmes like ‘Bizworld’, and that when the children move on to second level they will likely get involved in similar mini-business programmes there. “We can’t underestimate the effects that these events have on our children going forward — who knows, maybe we have the next Bill Gates in a classroom at the moment?”

(This article was first published on the Kilcullen Page of the Kildare Nationalist.)

Saturday, April 22, 2017

The passing of Lily Brennan

The Diary has learned of the death of Elizabeth (Lily) Brennan (nee Dowling) of Nicholastown, on 21 April 2017, peacefully, at Naas Hospital. Beloved wife of the late Seamus, her passing is deeply regretted by her loving son Eugene, daughters Marian, Ita and Deirdre, grandchildren Heidi and Austen, great-grandchildren Ben and Toby, nieces, nephews, relatives and friends.

Lily will be reposing at Murphy Bros Funeral Home, Church Lane, Naas, from 2pm on Monday with prayers at 8pm. Removal from there will take place on Tuesday morning at 10.30 to the Church of The Sacred Heart and St Brigid, Kilcullen, arriving for 11am requiem Mass. Her funeral will take place immediately afterwards to New Abbey Cemetery.

House private please. Family flowers only. Donations if desired to the Alzheimer's Society of Ireland, for which purpose there will be a donation box in the church.

May she rest in peace.

Can KBC’s Grade 3 Mix B do it?

As the Southwest Knockout Cup ends Kilcullen Badminton Club have already won the Grade 4 Cup and had one team through to the Grade 3 Final, writes Club PRO Enda O’Neill. Hoping to make it an all KBC final were Jen Monaghan and the Grade 3 Mix B team.

Jen’s team had ended the Grade 3 League and Leinster Champions Baltinglass Badminton Clubs hopes in a tense Quarter Final where it took a sudden death set to decide the outcome with Chelsey Cox and Vincent Coller keeping their cool and taking the set 21-17 from a dejected Baltinglass pair.

It wasn’t going to be an easy Semi Final against a Bough side who wanted to exact revenge for their Grade 4 team, who were dumped out of the Grade 4 Cup by the Kilcullen outfit. This Grade 3 semi final match was played in St Laurence’s Hall as the floor in the complex was being re-done, home advantage taken from ‘The Rags’.

First Ladies started proceedings with Chelsey and Sarah Walshe destroying the Bough Ladies in two sets, 21-7 and 21-10. Barry O’Neill and Enda O’Neill went out as first mens were beaten in two sets. Kathrin Logan and captain Jen played second ladies and were also beaten in two sets. Oisin Egan and Vincent Coller won the second mens in three sets. Going in to the mix games the score was Kilcullen Badminton Club and Bough tied with two games all, but Bough had a set up on the KBC team.

KBC’s first mix, Chelsey and Vincent went out to face the Bough mix 1, our heroes in Baltinglass started strong winning the first set but lost their way in the second and third set loosing the game in three, now Bough were ahead 3-2. Kathrin and Enda went out next in the second mix and needed to win it to put Kilcullen back on track. The KBC pair have had a solid season, only beaten twice in the League and were going to prove hard to overcome. In a tough two sets the KBC duo didn’t disappoint and took their game in two sets 21-18, 21-17 levelling the match 3-3.

Jen and Barry were out next, this pair have also been tough on their opponents and have so far this season and have only been beaten once in the South West League and Cup. The dynamic duo didn’t disappoint and easily broke the Bough pair winning 21-16, 21-13 respectively. Kilcullen were now 4-3 up with one game still left to play, the main thing now was that they had two sets over Bough. Bough would have to win the fourth mix in two sets if they were to have a chance of making the Final.

Kilcullen’s fourth mix were Sarah and Oisin. Kilcullen’s fourth mix have been unstoppable this season so far with a 100 per cent record. It didn’t start well for KBC and Sarah and Oisin were beaten in the first set 21-15, the next set was going to be crucial to the outcome of the match. The question for KBC was, Can we do it? The answer, YES WE CAN! Sarah and Oisin kept their nerve in the second set and showed their class, beating the Bough pair 21-12 in a fine display of badminton. So another Kilcullen team reach the Grade 3 Mix Final.

Tuesday April 25 is D Day for KBC’s Grade 3 A and B mix teams as they will face each other in the Cup Final in Carlow Lawn Tennis Club. Unfortunately one of our excellent teams will lose but on the positive it will be a victory for our successful club. Good luck to both Owen Wallace our mix A captain and Jen Monaghan our mix B captain and their teams in the final. Whatever happens on the night we will all celebrate with a ‘SuperMac’s’ afterwards and sure if anything the craic and friendly(ish) banter will be good!

Finally good luck also to Tara O’Neill, Chelsey Cox, John Mullen and sub Enda O’Neill in their Dublin District League semi final in Whitehall Road on Saturday 23 April. The KBC gang will face ESB in what is sure to be an ‘electric’ semi fina … ”Go on the Rags!”

Don't forget you can check Kilcullen Badminton Club on or on our Facebook page Kilcullen Badminton Club for all our news and upcoming fixtures.

Pictured are our Grade 3 Mix Finalists.

Date set for Mac & Norman Rally 2017

The date has been set for this year's Mac & Norman Rally, the 15th year in which it will take place, in aid of the Irish Cancer Society.

Now scheduled for Sunday 13 August, it will start off at 1pm from Mac Sully's yard and follow the usual route to Walls of Kilgowan.

Entertainment at the finish will include Sister Act and the Celtic Gypsies, and the Charity Auction will be at 5.15pm.

Posters and sponsorship cards will be ready by end of May, so anyone who would like to take please contact Ann on 045 483700.

Any donations towards auction would be greatly appreciated.

Public meeting for Culture Night interest

A public meeting at Athy Arts Centre of Thursday 27 April will provide information for any cultural group that wants to get involved in Culture Night 2017, which this year is Friday 22 September, writes Brian Byrne.

The meeting will also provide training on the use of digital marketing tools to generate interest in the very successful Culture Night event, which this year is being extended to a weekend of the Saturday and Sunday following the actual Night.

The meeting is free to attend, but booking is required via Eventbrite.

For more information email, visit the Facebook page 'Arts in Kildare' or visit the website.

Last year in Kildare there were over 93 events, an attendance in excess of 9,550 in 2016. In Kilcullen, Mayor of Kildare Councillor Ivan Keatley launched Portrait of Memories: Kilcullen 1916-2016 A collection of oral history interviews on Culture Night.