Christmas festivities 2019
Christmas season 2019 began on Wed. Dec. 4thth when about 60 members of our group sat down to a lovely meal in the beautifully decorated Gullane’s Hotel.
The last monthly meeting of the year was chaired by Deirdre Hogan in the absence of our Chairperson Mgt. Brennan. This was followed by demonstrations of festive flower decorations by Rose Hogan. The finished products were raffled later together with many more lovely gifts. Nicholas Power then entertained the group with a story of memories from his young days as a son of a Garda living in a country area.
Kay Murphy, President of Active Retirement Ireland, was our special guest for the day. It was nice to meet and talk to someone from the higher office. She had great praise for all our group’s wonderful work.
The evening was a nice way to finish the year which is our 17th year up and running. We should be very pleased with all we have accomplished over the years.
Christmas Dinner/Dance with Brendan Shine and his band.
Our celebrations continued on Tuesday 10th Dec in the Shamrock Lodge Hotel in Athlone . Again, a large number of our group set off on a very wet afternoon to join a very large crowd from many parts of the country for a most enjoyable evening of entertainment.
On arrival, we were greeted with a very welcome glass of mulled wine which would warm your heart on a cold winter’s day.
After dinner, which consisted of a lovely festive 4 course meal, we sang and tapped our feet to the magical music of (the now) 88 year old Joe Flynn . Looking and sounding as good as ever, we were able to join in and remember all the words of the songs from our era. He brought back many happy memories.
This was followed by Frank Forde, the inimitable comedian. This was the most hilarious half hour of fun and laughter we have had for a very long time. If laughter is the best medicine, then we had plenty of it that day !!!
The ever popular Brendan Shine and his band then took to the stage. He took us back in time as we danced to the music of the fifties, sixties and seventies. We may not be as fast on our feet as we used to be but it didn’t stop everyone getting to their feet to attempt the foxtrot, the quickstep ,the old time waltz and the siege of Ennis. The line dancers were in full flight!!
The evening recalled for many of our age group happy memories of the dances at the cross roads, the Maypole, the Barn dances after the yearly threshing and the carnival dances.
To finish off the evening all voices joined in the singing of all the Christmas songs, - I’m dreaming of a white Christmas, Jingle Bells, etc. etc.
We felt sad as we stood to at the rendering of “Abhrann na fhiann”
It was a very memorable evening and we hope to be able to make a return visit next Christmas p.g.