Bring On The Conker Championships

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After a different week of sorts last week [and today 😉 ]  Last Friday saw Ballybougals first poker classic take place in the old school hall.

With very special thanks to the people I share this small village with €827 was raised on the night for the Niall Mellon Township Trust. I really am so appreciative, sincerely for this support. Thank you 🙂
That said… I have now in my account €2380 [plus €50 of a cheque]. And whilst theres another few bob still to come in… I’m still well short by over €2,000.
Last year I and ‘her indoors’ paid almost the full €5,000 and the year before too. I’ve kept in very close contact with the Niall Mellon Township regarding where my account stands and whilst I yesterday was very much reassured there is a place for me there and to take my time… time is still looming and I guess I have a decision to make….. ?
Personally, its been an unusual sort of a year this year with the odd jester thrown in simply to make life more interesting 🙄 [you know yourself… 😉 ] and I have chosen to take until after this weekend down in Freshford at The Conker Championships before I make any sort of decision. I might even drop by and see my good friend Pat
For the moment wish me luck and lets see how I get on in Kilkenny 😉
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gardeners charity poker classic in ballyboughal

are you going...?

are you going...?

***Tickets can be bought behind the bar in The Village Inn from Kevin or drop by my house or give me a call 🙂

From Yes folks 7 tables of 7 people will battle it out for the title of Ballyboughals best poker player Friday 16th October.

The gig won’t take place in O’Connors pub exactly as the people wont really all fit in… rather it will take place in the old school opposite… but systems are in place that a lounge person will run back and forth constantlty from one to the other with your beverage in case your taste buds dry out 😉

The reason… well of course the trad session is on so when you finsh your game of cards… simply walk the far side of the [very narrow] road and have a listen to some of Ireland finest musicians.

Sandwiches will be provided on the night and the trad session [as always] is free in.

All money raised will of course go to my trip to South Africa with the Niall Mellon Township Trust. Click here to see how much I’ve raised so far.

Never been to ballyboughal [just outside Swords btw] here’s how to get here

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national trails day sunday october 4th ’09

ballyboughal image courtesy of phil-o-kane photography

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Sunday October 4th sees the national trails day arrive.

I love the great outdoors. I love it when I am warm…. and outdoors. This day is all about getting wrapped up and getting out and about. There’s the usual reaons as to why being active is good for you but its is also very much from by point of view about nature and actually seeing, feeling and touching it.

If you are interested… here’s what discover Ireland have to say

It’s autumn. The days are fresh. The colours of the countryside are just spectacular. You should get out there! Why not visit our Discover Ireland website and choose from over 100 scenic looped walks, great forest trails or more challenging mountain trails. There are walks to suit all levels of ability and experience from the relatively easy 2-hour stroll to more challenging 5-hour trails.

I did my own version of this last January around Limerick and Cork and I loved every second of it. There’s also more information at the National Trails Day website.

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see for yourself...

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I’m going to compete in the Irish Conker Championships

conkers...

conkers...

yes you read it correctly… 😉

This coming October bank holiday weekend sees the Irish Conker Championships, now in their 10th year take place in Freshford, County Kilkenny.

I spoke with Main Orgainser Brenda who explained to me that whilst some may find the event a little on the trivial side… there are those who do take it quite serious. I explained to Brenda I was one of the more serious. Brenda laughed slightly and asked how long I had been in training for….? hmmmm

The area where the competition takes place is surrounded by 52 conker trees so its perfect for the event. It is from here the local primary school, will start in about 2 weeks time collecting conkers every day after school and at weekends. In total about 25-30,000 conkers will be used.

conker - image courtesy of http://www.louieswords.com

Brenda also explained that to avoid any ‘tom-foolery’ all and only conkers supplied by the association along with leather laces supplied by local shoe maker Michael Rossiter can be used on the day.

The holes are then drilled by some of the 70 volunteers on the Saturday and then laced on the Sunday ready for the competition starting that day at 12pm.

I’ve formed a picture in my head of the 118 50 kind of Flahavans 1980’s type tracksuit complete with cotton sweatband of course…. I’m wondering also if I need a Rocky Balboa group of trainers to stand in my corner and a nick name for when I am announced entering the ring…. 

Either or… I’ve been off the competitive conker circuit for close on 21 years now and I need to get into training…. 😉

If you want to find out more visit the Irish Conker Championships website. Also on the weekend will be about ’80 musicians and the Kilkenny Flower Show along with the usual fares, stalls and stands. It costs €6 for an adult to enter and €1 to use the practice arena.

Any thoughts or advice for me – leave a comment. I need all the help I can get 😉

Could this be a nice opportunity to raise a little sponsorship for a good cause…?

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niall mellon township trust gardeners weekend

and what a weekend it turned out to be…. It was amazing.

To say I was blown away by peoples generosity is an understatement. Whether it was time, money or simply calling to wish only the very best  – thank you all so much. You really did and will make such a difference. From my heart thank you! The *thank you* list here could only be endless so… if I have forgotten to mention you please hollar… you really do deserve it…

The setting of the Garden Exhibition Centre was always a great start and the sun made a very welcome appearance. Saturday started really well highlighted with 2 garden lectures. One from myself and the second from nice guy and fellow garden designer Damien Keane. But Sunday left most mesmerised when The Riptide Movement played the second tier of the mountain side based centre. Kilquade certainly came to life 😉

But it didn’t stop there… Dawn Ashton was also there creating amazing mosaics with the children. These will be brought to South Africa and used to decorate the walls of the garden. The staff of the Centre and so many garden designers turned out in their droves simply to be on hand to give out free advice where necessary.

Isn’t it amazing when an entire industry arrives to support such an amazing cause. Even Dominic Loughran, head of operations for the Niall Mellon Township Trust turned up with his entire family – and he flying out to S.A. today!

I think the video summises it so very well…

to donate or to see how much was raised click here 🙂

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