Helping ill children: Please support this important fundraiser


Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital in Crumlin is one of our best-known national institutions and many thousands of sick children have been treated there over the years.

  Next Saturday night Shirley Whyte and the good people of Fuerty are holding a fundraising night in D’Alton’s in aid of the aforementioned hospital. There will be a barbeque, music and auction on the night with a special €200 hamper for the Best Dressed Farmerette, which is why the night is being called Craic for Crumlin and Shirley promises the craic will be 90. 

  There is also a raffle taking place and at the moment they are busy selling tickets with the first prize of a heifer and calf, or €1,500, along with loads more prizes. There is a nice story behind the first prize. A few years ago Liam and Bernie Heavey donated a calf to another local fundraiser and Ann Gacquin bought the calf at auction; she asked Liam to hold on to it, until another deserving cause came up and in the meantime, as calves do, the calf grew up and had her own calf. When Ann heard of this present cause she kindly donated the heifer and new calf – charity cattle, if you will.  I don’t have to emphasise the importance of Crumlin’s Children’s Hospital, so if you can at all get to D’Alton’s on Saturday night, bring plenty of money with you, buy loads of tickets, have a mighty night’s fun and make a contribution to what I’m sure will be a very successful fundraising event.

  I intend to make the long, maybe sad journey to Sligo on Saturday night to see Galway and Donegal, so I might not be back in time. If I am, I will hopefully see you all in Fuerty and, once again, meet all the Rossies.

Can anyone stop the Dubs?

Some weeks ago while gazing into my crystal ball, I predicted that the Leinster football championship was a foregone conclusion and that no-one would come within ten points of the all-conquering Dubs. Last Sunday I was proved wrong when a battling Kildare side got to within nine points of the seven-in-a-row winning Leinster champions.

  However, I have to say that I saw nothing last Sunday to suggest that the Dubs are in any way faltering and in fact, the list of well-known All-Ireland medal winners who didn’t start at all, is absolutely terrifying.

  Bernard Brogan, who came in and proved he is still untouchable as a scoring forward, Paul Flynn, Michael Dara McCauley, Eoghan O’Gara, Diarmuid Connolly, Johnny Cooper, and Kevin McMenamon, are just a few of the marquee players who were on the bench – and yet they weren’t missed at all. 

  Con O’Callaghan gets a start in the Leinster final and scores 12 points, six from play, Cormac Costello, who came in as a sub in last year’s All-Ireland final and scored three points seems to have disappeared altogether and the signs are ominous for the rest of the remaining counties as we head into the business end of the season. As for Kildare, Keith Cribbin, Danny Flynn and David Slattery were as good as you would see on any county team, while the exhibition of high fielding by the midfielder Kevin Feely was absolutely outstanding. I was surprised that very few of the sportswriters mentioned him at all in Monday’s papers.

  I didn’t see the Ulster final but again it went as expected (to be fair, the Rossies are the only ones who upset the predictions in any of the four provinces), and whatever way we look at it, it still looks as if the eventual winners will come from one of the big three, Tyrone, Kerry, or the Dubs. I really hope I’m wrong so come on Roscommon, or Mayo, or someone else, and strike a blow for the small counties.

Open Day delayed – for a great reason!

Finally for this week, my good friend Sean Beirne tells me that the big annual Open Day in Donamon Castle that was to take place on Sunday week, 30th of July has been postponed due to the outrageous action of the Roscommon footballers in beating Galway, winning the Connacht final and thereby qualifying for the All-Ireland quarter-final, which will take place in Croke Park on the same day.

  Sean (kindly) pointed out to me that a large number of Galwegians will be free on that day, but in view of the fact that the entire county of Roscommon will be in Dublin, the very wise decision to postpone the event was taken and it will now take place on the Sunday of the bank holiday weekend, 6th of August. It is still one of the great days of the summer entertainment season, so keep it in your diary, and make sure you get to Donamon Castle on that new date.

A blog worth viewing

Almost four years ago Geraldine Lavelle, a friend of my daughter, Lisa, was involved in an accident that left her with life-changing spinal injuries that have confined her to a wheelchair. Geraldine, who was only in her mid-20s at the time, has taken it on herself to try and raise awareness of spinal injuries and their effect on the people themselves, their friends and their families.

  Now she has started a very interesting blog, ‘’. Her aim is to help anyone who has to deal with what she admits can be a very devastating occurrence and I would ask you all to take a little bit of time out and have a read of a very interesting, thought-provoking blog.