Tuesday 22 December 2015

Some highlights of the Riches of Clare concert series 2015

"Elaine Hogan, Martin Glynn, David Sanders, and Alan Wallace performing at The Riches of Clare concert series as part of Fleadh Nua- May 21, 2015 (03)." Posted on Youtube on the 23rd of May 2015 by Niamhaines.

"Eimear Coughlin, Francis Cunningham, Anne Rynne, and Marian Curtin performing at The Riches of Clare concert series on July 29, 2015 (04)." Posted on Youtube on the 1st of August 2015 by Niamhaines.

"James Devitt, Christy Barry, Conor McCarthy, and Johnny Falkner performing at The Riches of Clare concert series as part of Fleadh Nua- May 19, 2015 (07). Posted on Youtube on the 22nd of May 2015 by Niamhaines.

Some highlights of the Corofin Traditional Festival 2015

John Blake, Jesse Smith, & Colm Gannon performing at the Corofin Trad Fest in March 2015. Posted on Youtube on the 8th of May 2015 by Niamhaines.

"Declan, Joe, Aidan, and Ann Marie Rynne, as well as additional family members, performing for Joe's Lifetime Achievement Award at the 14th Annual Corofin Trad Fest March 2015." Posted on Youtube on the 9th of May 2015 by Niamhaines

"O'Grada and Murphy performing at the 14th Annual Corofin Trad Fest March 6, 2015." Posted on Youtube on the 8th of May 2015 by Niamhaines.

First Sortie features Martin Hayes & Dennis Cahill in Canada, May 2015

County Clare's Martin Hayes with Dennis Cahill on guitar from a concert in May 2015 on Canada's west coast. Posted on Youtube on the 23rd of November 2015 by SHOWCASE WEST.

Der Zauber der grünen Insel - A visit to the Cliffs of Moher, May 2015 with Fridi Mauma

Der Zauber der grünen Insel (The magic of the Emerald Isle), featuring a visit to the Cliffs of Moher in 2015. Posted on Youtube on the 26th of May by Fridi Mauma.

Christmas banquet at Bunratty Castle

Christmas banquet at Bunratty Castle, County Clare, December 2015. Posted on Youtube on the 11th of December 2015 by gabriel schmidt.

Friday 18 December 2015

Young Kilrush Reader features in European Exhibition

Last July, Clare County Library was contacted by the Libraries Development Unit of the Local Government Management Agency (LGMA) with details of a European literacy project they were involved with, in association with the European Literacy Policy Network, Elinet. Established in February 2014, the European Literacy Policy Network (ELINET) unifies 78 partner organisations from 28 European countries (including 24 EU member states) engaged in literacy policy-making and reading promotion in Europe. One of the strands of the project was to develop a European literacy learners’ photo exhibition which would go on display in Brussels in the Autumn and here is where Clare County Library became involved. The requested input from Ireland was a photo of a child library user and a letter he/she would write to say thanks for helping them with reading and writing, and the staff of Kilrush Library knew just the person.

Nine year old Sarah Blunnie is an avid reader and a regular library visitor to Kilrush Public Library and her letter to her local librarian now features in Elinet’s display in Brussels. Sarah outlines in her letter why it is it important to read and write and thanks the staff of Kilrush Library for their help and inspiration.

Here is what she wrote;

Dear Librarian,

My name is Sarah and I am nine years old. I look forward to going to the library every week. I love getting out new books and moving on to the more complicated ones. I think it is very important for everyone to learn to read and write. It helps me at school, at home and when I am out and about. You give me all the information I need on books and activities taking place in the library. Thank you for encouraging me to join the book club, I really like it.

Ireland’s entry is one of nine billboards making up the literacy awareness exhibition currently on display in Brussels featuring a photograph of Sarah and her letter to her local library. It now fittingly takes its place among entries from nine other European countries.

Clare County Library is proud to be part of this positive literacy promotion opportunity in the headquarters of the European Union. Helen Walsh, County Librarian, stated that “Clare County Library has consistently maintained over the years a strong focus on literacy development among children through its various book centred programmes such as the Summer Reading Challenge and the Children’s Book Festival. The Libraries Development Unit specifically chose Clare County Library to represent this literacy strand because it recognized its proven track record and accomplishments in this area.” She concluded that “Clare County Library is committed to making reading an enjoyable and worthwhile pastime as is evidenced by the numbers of books issued to children in 2014, which accounted for 46% of all book issues. We are delighted that Sarah has become the face of reading and literacy on such a global stage”

FleadhTV coming to Ennis in 2016 for the All Ireland Fleadh Cheoil

"FleadhTV preview of Fleadh Cheoil na hÉireann coming to Ennis in 2016." Posted on Youtube on the 21st of August 2015 by Fleadh TV.

New Books for Christmas

Looking for those last minute stocking fillers? Your local bookshops have plenty of new books that should bring a smile on Christmas morning.

As always cookery books top the bestseller lists and this year Neven Maguire, Rachel Allen, Donal Skehan have new books available for Christmas. Susan Jane White’s The Virtuous Tart won the Irish Cookbook of the Year Award 2015 and would be a welcome gift for anyone trying to be healthier in 2016.

Sports fans are well catered for in the bookshops. New releases include Until Victory Always – a memoir by Donegal football manager Jim McGuinness; an autobiography by Henry Sheflin - one of the greatest hurlers of all time and rugby legend Peter Stringer’s autobiography entitled Pulling My Strings.

With the upcoming 1916 centenary, history buffs can find plenty of new releases on the subject. Easter Dawn: The 1916 Rising by Turtle Bunbury and The Easter Rebellion 1916 by Conor McNamara are particularly attractive, well- illustrated books that provide a overview of The Rising.

Those looking for some inspiration and positivity at this time of the year should treat themselves to Counting My Blessings: Francis Brennan's Guide to Happiness or Mary Kennedy’s What Matters.

For those interested in reading fiction there are books to suit all tastes.

The Little Red Chairs by Edna O’Brien was published in October, 10 years after her last novel.

Thirteen Ways of Looking by Colm McCann and A Slanting of the Sun by Donal Ryan are short story collections by two of Ireland’s most renowned authors.

To get you in the Christmas mood there’s Limerick author Roisin Meaney’s I’ll be Home for Christmas or Patricia Scanlan’s A Gift for You – a collection of seasonal short stories.

Ennistymon Falls Race - after Storm Desmond

Ennistymon Falls Race, 5th December 2015. Stage 3 of the Irish Whitewater Race League. Posted on Youtube on the 10th of December 2015 by David Glasswell.

Ennistymon Cascades in full flow after Storm Desmond:

The cascades in full flow after Storm Desmond. Posted on Youtube on the 11th of December 2015 by DJD Photography.

Kayakers Take Advantage of Storm Desmond Flooding:

Posted on Youtube on the 8th of December 2015 by Storyful News.

Bunratty Castle from the air

Bunratty Castle, Bunratty, County Clare, from the air. Posted on Youtube on the 2nd of November 2015 by rofinjungle.

Friday 11 December 2015

The Fiddle Case play Mick Flynn's 'Liscannor Bay' at The Greyhound, Kilkee, County Clare

The Fiddle Case play Mick Flynn's song 'Liscannor Bay' at The Greyhound, Kilkee, County Clare. Video shot by Keith McDonogh, Mindaugas Maksimavicius & James Sheppard on November 2015. Jon O’Connell - Vocals, Upright bass; Quentin Cooper - Guitars & sound recording; Adam Shapiro - Vocals & fiddle; Eoin O’Neill - Bouzouki. Posted on Youtube on the 3rd of December by burrencrawler.

Once upon a Place visits the Burren

Clare County Library and Clare County Arts Service in association with Laureate na nÓg, were proud to be part of a unique storytelling project that included twelve primary schools in the county in the Summer of 2015. County Clare was chosen as one of sixteen locations on foot of a successful application by the library service in June 2014.

Once Upon A Place was Eoin Colfer’s signature project during his tenure as Laureate na nÓg. His objective, to bring stories to children all over Ireland would focus on fantastic places and extraordinary settings in which to stage very special and unforgettable storytelling events.

On the 6th and 7th of May 2015, a team of six storytellers visited Ballyvaughan, Boston, Tubber, Furglan, Moy, Lahinch, Liscannor, Lisdoonvarna, Fanore and Doolin primary schools, with the main event taking place in the Michael Cusack Centre, for the children of Carron and New Quay National Schools. Here the children were treated to a feast of stories old and new from Carron’s own storyteller Paddy Hynes and children’s author and illustrator Alan Nolan. The aim of the Once Upon A Place project, to spark children’s imaginations and bring the magic of stories and books to young people all over Ireland, was most certainly realized.

The publication of the fantastic anthology for children Once upon a Place further enhanced the Laureate project and will serve to bring stories of Irish places to children all over the country and further afield.

Compiled by Eoin Colfer, it contains stories and poems for children that focus on the special link between story and place in Ireland. Lavish black-and-white charcoal illustrations by award-winning artist and picturebook illustrator P.J. Lynch further add to this amazing publication.

Once upon a Place, the book, features six new poems by Irish poets alongside stories from many of Ireland’s leading children’s writers including Roddy Doyle, Derek Landy and former Laureate na nÓg Siobhán Parkinson, as well as the first ever story for children by Academy Award nominee Jim Sheridan, director of My Left Foot, The Field and In America. It also features new work by Eoin Colfer himself, along with Pat Boran, Seamus Cashman, John Connolly, Marie-Louise Fitzpatrick, Mark Granier, Paula Leyden, Oisín McGann, Geraldine Mills, Jane Mitchell, Kate Newmann, Sarah Webb and Enda Wyley.

Launching the anthology Eoin Colfer said ‘This is my laureate project with a general aim of connecting today’s screen-centric youngsters to the magic of the country they live in and its rich artistic heritage.”

Royalties from the book will go towards the Laureate na nÓg project, which aims to raise the profile of children’s literature in Ireland and internationally and to introduce high quality children’s books to new audiences. The laureateship is currently held by novelist Eoin Colfer, the third person to be awarded this honour. A new Laureate na nÓg will be chosen by a voting process in 2016.

Sharon Shannon plays Never Going Back Again by Fleetwood Mac

Sharon Shannon plays her version of the 1977 track "Never Going Back Again" by Fleetwood Mac. `Recorded in Windmill Lane Studios as part of their Windmill Lane sessions. See http://www.independent.ie/entertainment/music/windmill-lane/sharon-shannon-34155650.html. Posted on Youtube on the 20th of November 2015 by Independent.ie.

County Clare's Buzzmonkeys present their latest single - Gonna Get Me A Gun

"Ginger Jam Music are proud to announce the release of 'Gonna Get Me A Gun' - the latest single by the Buzzmonkeys, those cult indie rockers from the Wild Atlantic Way." Posted on Youtube on the 20th of November by Gerry Doyle.

Surfing in County Clare at Samhain, Summer's End

"Samhain is Gaelic meaning "Summer's End" and pronounced “sah-win”. It's a celebration of the end of the harvest and the beginning of winter or the “darker half" of the year. It was during this time that a pumping ocean swell hit Europe. Filmed over two days in County Clare on Ireland's wild Atlantic coast, primarily at the rarely working, heaving slab of a surf spot called "Laurens" at the foot of the 700ft high Cliffs of Moher. The wind was offshore, the surf was classic and the sun cast everything in a golden light. It felt like summers end. Days later winter took hold and the cold, grey returned. This film was conceived as part of our #Talking Story project where through our book, film, still images and interviews we set about capturing the stories and characters which enrich our surfing lives. The story which inspired us in Clare is of a group of friends and surfers who take on everything the Atlantic can throw at their coast. Pete, Seamus and Fionan hold down regular jobs and other than the waves they surf, they lead regular lives. They ride Ireland's heaviest Winter surf for the fun and comradery, not for the glory. This is what makes their story special." Posted on Vimeo on the 27th of November 2015 by Northcore.

Storm Desmond, Ennis, 5th December 2015

"Storm Desmond and the River Fergus flowing through Ennis, County Clare, on the 5th December 2015." Posted on Youtube on the 5th of December 2015 by Gary Collins Photography.

Wednesday 9 December 2015

Parteen Weir - part of the Shannon Hydro-Electric Scheme

Over the past two days the ESB has had to steadily increase the flow of water down the old River Shannon at Parteen Weir as the flood waters along the River Shannon continue to rise. Parteen Weir is part of the Shannon Hydro-Electric Scheme and spans the Shannon at Parteen Villa. It was built to regulate the flow of the river and divert water, via an intake, into the head-race canal, which carries the water down to the power station at Ardnacrusha. The weir is clearly visible on this map, with the intake and head-race canal to its left. See photos of the Scheme here and listen to Nonie Lynch extol the virtues of the Scheme.

Photo above shows Parteen Weir and Intake under construction c.1926

Tuesday 8 December 2015

Library Development Plan 2016-2020 - We need your help

Clare County Library is in the process of preparing a Library Development Plan to cover the period 2016-2020. The previous plan covered the period 2010-2015 and achieved success in a number of areas: the appearance of buildings, improvements in IT provision, literacy programmes, children’s services, enhanced promotion of book culture and reading and continued management and preservation of the written, photographic, oral and musical culture of the county. It also saw the construction and opening of the new library at Cultúrlann Sweeney in Kilkee in 2012.

As part of the process, we are now actively seeking consultation with the public on the development and future priorities for the service. The plan is being prepared within the guidelines outlined in “Opportunities for All: a strategy for Public Libraries 2013-2017” and against the backdrop of other policies such as the National Cultural Policy and the Clare County Council Development Plan 2017-2023.

Clare County Council recognizes that the public library network is at the centre of communities and submissions are invited from individuals, groups and organizations as to how you wish to see the library service develop in the years ahead. As with the previous plan, of particular interest are submissions from infrequent/non-users of the service. The services of the public library are provided on the basis of equality of access for all.

Submissions should be emailed to mailbox@clarelibrary.ie or sent by post to County Librarian, Development Plan Submission, Clare County Library HQ, Mill Road, Ennis, County Clare. Closing date for submissions is 31st January, 2016