This group is involved in the promotion of Social and Cultural areas within our community from drama to festivals and everything in between.
Please take a look at some details about the Social and Cultural team and projects accessible via the links below:
If you would like to become involve in our group we'd love to hear from you.
Social and Cultural Committee
||Mait O'Bradaigh and Grainne Uí Ceallacháin
Lily Considine, Valerie Hackett, Rose Mary Finlay, Ann O'Neill, Tom Broderick, Liam Carroll, Mary Murphy.
The remit of the Social and Cultural Group within the OCDA is to promote and encourage Social and Cultural groups, activities and events in our community.
There is a huge group of volunteers, partners and sponsors who should be thanked for their assistance in all Social and Cultural projects. Many thanks to you all!
- The Oranmore Community Development Association (OCDA), through this association the Social and Cultural group give and receive support from all other groups.
- The Social and Cultural group and the OCDA are community groups and as such work hand in hand with the community at large, including individuals within the community, schools, sporting organisations, community associations, etc.
- Local businesses have always been very supportive of Social and Cultural initiatives, such as the St Patricks Day Parade, Cultural and Heritage Week/Seachtain Na Gaeilge, Carúil Na Nollag
If you have any questions feel free to contact us.
Current Social and Cultural Projects
Féile Cultúrtha Phádraig 2011
What was a most exciting Féile Cultúrtha Phádhraig has come to an end. Following the success of last year’s event the committee was encouraged to expand and vary the programme of activities to ensure that there was an event to suit all the family. This year’s event was further enhanced by the presence of the visitors from Clohars Fouesnant, a small town in Brittany, France. The purpose of the visit was to initiate a twinning between both Oranmore and Clohars Fouesnant. The visitors were somewhat overwhelmed by the variety of activities and events available to them during the course of their visit and were happy to attend as many as possible. The success of the event was due in no small way to the close co-operation of both committees involved.
The theme of the week was “Ní Neart go cur le Chéile” –an old Irish proverb, translated means we are all the stronger as a result of supporting each other. This community support was very much in evidence right throughout the week. All of the events were well attended, from the beautiful displays of the work of the Witty Stitchers, the craft displays of patch work, spinning, and basketry. We also had the wonderfully entertaining afternoon with TG4”s Young Musician of The Year Padraig Keane, as well as the enchanting music of Mrs Hyland’s and Ms Jessica Lillis’s Band from Scoil Iósaf Naofa. Keanes was bursting at the seams as the sing-along session organised by Neasa Ní Fhlatharta was even more popular than that same event of last year. Enthusiastic singers were competing for slots to entertain the audience.
A trip down memory lane was provided by the photographic exhibition compiled by Pat and Eileen Murray as well as the Heritage Walk organised by John Grealy, Kathleen Cannon and the Heritage Group. Staying with the historical theme Leonie King of Oranmore Castle organised guided tours of the castle and the Historical stroll through Oranmore with local historian Kay Davies was another very well supported event. Clearly there is an insatiable interest in things past.
The Grande Finale of the week was the St. Patrick’s Day Parade. Celebrating the tenth anniversary of the first parade it is clear that this event is going from strength to strength. This year saw the largest number of participants and the support from the community is also on the increase. There are separate accounts of the wonderfully well organised Treasure Hunt, in Rinville Park, Eddie Lenihan’s Storytelling, Heritage Walk on the Shores of Oranmore and The Musical Extravaganza on the Eve of St. Patrick’s Day in the Oranmore Library.
Edmund Lenihan Storyteller and Author.
The events of the week started off with the Seannchaí Eddie Lenihan’s story telling morning in the library. This was very popular and very well attended. Eddie, in his own inimitable style regaled his audience with stories of the wonders of the little people; he also sounded notes of caution when one finds oneself passing a fairy fort late at night particularly if one had visited the local hostelry as many strange things have been seen and heard. Such was the success of the event that it’s a must for next year’s programme.
Heritage Walk on the Shores of Oranmore.
John Grealy, local coastal expert, rounded up the mornings walkers on Sunday 13th March for a most interesting walk along the shore. This outing was organised as part of Féile Cultúrtha Phádraig We met up at the car park in the village and drove to the back of McNulty's deer farm, at the bottom of what was known locally as Feeny’s Bóithrín on the way to Maree where the walk proper started. John pointed out evidence of farming life in Oranmore from the last century -markers for seaweed acres. In times gone by you could own an acre of seaweed from where you could harvest the seaweed. Seaweed was then taken away on horse and cart to be used as fertilizer on the land. This practice died out when chemical fertilizers became more popular with farmers. John Grealy gave us all a copy of an extract of the map from the 1840's ordinance survey map and took us to a number of points of interest. He pointed out where winkle pickers picked their catch to be sold in Galway. Did you know the shore off Oranmore has a mussel bed and an oyster bed? You can't taste these delights though unless you have a license. John also pointed out where the nuns bathed in private in times past - the cold Atlantic sea would certainly have kept them clean inside and out! Some of the walkers on the shore walk were from the very active village Heritage Group. It was lovely to hear about the project they are involved with in the village cemetery and the wonderful series of talks organised by them in the Oranmore Library during the past winter.
Senior Citizens enjoy a morning of Indoor Bowling
One of the events of Féile Cultúrtha Phádraig which was of particular interest to the senior citizens group was An indoor bowls event that took place in the Maree community Centre on Tuesday 15th March. Under the tutelage of experts Manus and Marian Monaghan as well as a number of seasoned players from the Maree club the Oranmore visitors were introduced to the basic skills of the sport. After the warm up exercises were completed, teams were formed and the competition now became serious. Were there winners or losers? On this occasion as it was a first everyone was a winner, however, such was the enjoyment of the event that it is expected that a monthly event will now be organised.
The outing was sponsored by Mick Curley, Galway County Council and organised by Tom Broderick and co-ordinated by Dolores Kilroe. Margaret McNulty and Malachy Noone provided the transportation to the centre. Rita Furey brought together members of the Senior Citizens group, Oranmore. Twenty eight people from Maree and Oranmore attended the event. Bowls matches are held in Maree every Monday night.
The Witty Stitchers, Craft Display
Oranmore Witty Stitchers, Craft display for Heritage week was a real success. There was a wonderful interest in all our crafts, knitting, croche, cross stitch, paintings etc. there was a number of people interested in purchasing some of our crafts. Most people do this for a hobby and give them to family and friends. Thank you to all of the people that called to see our display. A special word of thanks to Noreen and Tom Considine for giving us the unit free of charge, to Claire and all the staff in Level 1 Interiors in the Orantown Centre, to the Olde Brewery, Oranmore for giving us the venue free of charge every Thursday. Thanks to the Social and Cultural Committee for all their support.
A sun drenched Rinville Park was the venue for the Treasure Hunt which was part of the Féile Cultúrtha Phádraig. Over 60 children took part and searched eagerly for the hidden clues.
The clues were strategically placed to ensure plenty of exercise for all the participants. The challenges ranged from “ find the ducks”, “who invented the WII”, “Sponge Bop Square Pants”. Even Enda Kenny did not escape mention. The finishing point of the hunt was the Children’s Playground, an amenity used and enjoyed by hosts of families. All participants were winners and were awarded for their efforts by receiving an Easter egg and a drink.
The expertise in the preparation and organisation of the event by team leaders, Dolores Kilroe and Peter Campion contributed to the enjoyment of the day, ensuring that the event is included in the programme of events for the Féile Cultúrtha Phádraig 2012. The organising committee appreciate the support received from Galway Co. Council for this event.
St Patrick's Eve Choral Concert
On Wednesday 16th March 2011 at 7.30pm Oranmore Library should have been preparing to close up for the evening. But no! the place was hopping and ready to go. Seachtain na Gaeilge was being celebrated and proud to be Irish could easily have been dubbed a “Theme”. The evening started with beautiful restful renditions of some of O’Carolan’s music for harp played by the petite Claire Talty. The sweetness of the music was mirrored by the child herself, a charmed and charming child of our time. The Adult Choral Group conducted by Ann Marie McCreevy took to the stage (at this point míle buíocgas do Tom Broderick for same) with four choices appropraite for the day that was in it, The Dear Little Shamrock, Dóches Linn, Whispering Hope and All through the Night. Cór Na nÓg Oranmore contributed with a version of Fill, Fill a Rún Ó, Galway Girl and many other pieces accompained by their teacher Jessica Lillis. A future star was allowed to shine when 11 year old Luke Corrigan gave us a Inspector Clousseau’s The Pink Panter on the Saxophone. I don’t believe the piece was chosen for the French visitors in the audience from Clohars-Fouesnant in Brittany. It merely a coincidance. There followed the Percy French section of the program with the men leading off with “Are you right there Michael, are you right ?”. This song was instrumental in the closure of the West Clare Railway way back in 1961 when Percy French attived late for court when asked was this tardiness a delibrate insult to the court French replied no your Honour, I travelled here by train and that explains all! Case dismissed! Percy French was a social commentator and we are transported back in time where French gives a microcism of Irish life in “Phil the Fluther’s Ball” and is the more expressed in “The Mountains of Mourne”. The parody ‘Och I dunno’ hints at how matches were made, how men viewed women, how women viewed their own role. We were not to know at the time of the performance but later we learnt that ‘Och I dunno’ was Gráinne O’Callaghan’s mothers party piece and so was a poignant moment for Grá. Now to the Oranmore Youth Group managed by Ruth Broderick. This part of the concert was to my mind only fabulous, Ciara McWilliams and Sarah Reynolds absoutley blew me away with the strength and beauty of their solos. Liam Burke from Maree seems to be able to accompany with his keyboard skills just anything and the other musicians sat nochalantly playing away as if it were all as easy as pie! These young people’s pride in their own country, own community would make you feel enthusastic and hopefull for our future as a nation. Ireland will be fine in their safe hands.Our French visitors entertained us with three typical French shanty type songs. Theirs was a robust performance and like good French wine went down very well. Back to the adult choir and the Moore’s Melodies section “Oft in the Stilly Night”, “The Meeting of the Waters” and “Believe Me” were all well received. John Grealy then treated us to the “last Rose of Summer” which was an emotional piece about loss and loneliness. John stood tall and proud as he did many years ago when this library was a church and John was a regular choire boy. The wheel has come a full circle. Sister Judy and Debbie Charleton sang individually and also a duet. The rafters of the old church, new library breathed in harmoney and pleasure at theeir sound.The finale was appropraite as Irish Eyes were smiling and the choir bestowed the blessing of St Patrick on all present. It was a night to remember what we love about Ireland and how green and how beautiful it is and how beautifying the poetry and the prose and how wonderful the music and the dance.
The Committee hosted the first ever Culture and Heritage Week/Seachtain Na Gaeilge which included the St Patrick's Day Parade and Céili Mór. Seachtain Na Gaeilge- Culture and Heritage Week. St. Patrick’s Night, Céilí Mór, held in the Oranmore Lodge Hotel brought the Seachtain Na Gaeilge, Culture and Heritage Week, to an end. This was the first year an event such as this was held and all agreed that it was a wonderful success. The wide variety of events, exhibitions and workshops, as outlined in the colourful programme, were very well attended by members of all age groups and the reaction from participants was both positive and encouraging. As all of the events, apart from the Céilí Mór were free of charge.
The programme of events started on Wednesday March 10 when the Official Opening, as well as a cheese and wine reception, was held in the library.
The chairperson of the Social & Cultural Sub Committee of the Oranmore Community Development Association Gráinne O”Callaghan welcomed representatives of voluntary groups, clubs, societies and associations, both past and present, and commended them on the wonderful contribution made by them to the cultural life of this community. Groups representing the Irish Language, Music, Song, Dance, Sport, Drama, Art, Craft, Heritage and History were in attendance. The chairperson complimented Angela Kelly and the Church Restoration Committee, whose vision and diligence in restoring the Old St. Mary’s Church has left the community with a wonderful building which currently houses the library as well as the Community Office.
Commenting on the strength of the Irish Language in the community, the chairperson alluded to all the schools in the parish where teachers are tirelessly working to pass on the language to future generations. She referred in particular to Gaelscoil de hÍde, where the daily language of communication is the Irish language. From humble beginnings- an naíonra, established almost 30 years ago, was the foundation which later become a campus where in excess of 220 pupils all are receiving a education through Irish.
Introducing guest speaker, Seán Óg de Paor, the chairperson pointed out the privilege of having someone of the calibre of Seán Óg living in our community.
Margadh Feirmeoirí. Farmers’ Heritage Market.
Following the Official Opening of Seachtain na Gaeilge on Wed. March 10 Thursday was a particularly busy day. The Farmers’ Heritage Market got off to an electrifying start on a bright, sunny, fresh March afternoon. The market was reminiscent of a mini show with farm animals and fowl as well as traditional farm machinery on display. The pony and trap proved to be the main attraction for the large group of children in attendance. There was a big increase in the number of stall holders selling a wide variety of local produce ranging from meat, fish, cheese, vegetables, home baking, bric a brac and crafts. The barbeque, music, lollipops, all contributed to the festive atmosphere of the market.
Heritage Photographic Exhibition “Travel Through the Ages “which took place in the Library was a major attraction. This exhibition was a collection of photographs representing different modes of transport used in times past. Photographs ranged from the traditional donkey and cart, to the Ford Anglia and Ford Prefect circa 1950”s as well as a wide of boats. The exhibition featured many local personalities of the past and present. This wonderful collection was compiled by Kathleen Cannon and her active committee.
Another wonderful feature of the festival week was the exhibition of the craft group- The Witty Stitchers in the Olde Brewery. Here the visitor was treated to a variety of knits, crochet and embroidery created by this welcoming group. For those with skills to share a visit to this group, who meet regularly on Thursdays at 2 p.m. is a must.
Singalong with Neasa. Oranmore experienced a sensational night’s entertainment when Neasa Ní Fhlatharta and her enthusiastic singers, entertained a captivated audience in Keanes. Ballads, folk, pop and sean-nós songs were the order of the night with wonderful accompaniment of Neasa and her group of talented musicians. Such we the success of the night that it is planned to make it a regular event. In keeping with the festive mood in the village Friday was also an event filled day. The large numbers who visited Oranmore Castle is evidence of the significance of the Castle to this community. The committee greatly appreciate the generosity of Leonie King, owner of the castle, for having made this event possible.
“Oranmore Reaching for the Stars”. After a most entertaining lecture on the planets and the night sky Prof. Mike Redfern, Prof of Physics in marking the 400 anniversary of Gallileo Gallelei, spoke of one of the greatest astronomers, authors and inventors in history. We look forward to further talks from Prof Redfern and perhaps evenings of viewing the stars above us as the weather improves.
Friday evening saw the opening of an Art & Photographic Exhibition, which was organized by Lily Considine, in the former First Active Bank office. Thanks to the generosity of Alan & Phil Carr, the owners of the building, the office was transformed into an excellent art space for five days of the Culture & Heritage Week. Photography and works of art in oils, watercolours, pastels and acrylics were displayed as well as pieces incorporating mixed media and textiles and an item of sculpture. All of the work was by local people; some of who have only recently took up painting, members of Oranmore Art Group, and artists who have been to Art College. Thanks to all who participated and those who helped to make the exhibition a success.
Saturday was a particularly busy day starting off at 11am with Scealaiocht in the Library with Mairin Mhic Lochlann.
Walking Tour of Oranmore
Later on, those who were able to attend the walking tour with Kay Davies, local historian and author, had a rare treat of being able to learn all about the history of a once small village, which has now expanded into a bustling town.
In the afternoon, Lynn O’Keeffee of Kinvara Sustainable Living gave a talk and power point presentation in the Library on all things to do with horticultural heritage and seed saving. This was very interesting, informative and enjoyed by all. Kinvara Sustainable Living is an organization with the goal to encourage and support practical small-scale food production in the community to enable people to grow food for them selves and improve their quality of life. Lynn holds courses on vegetable growing, fruit growing, poultry keeping, seed saving and clay oven building and can be contacted at www.kinvarasustainableliving.com
Sunday, the fifth day of the Culture and Heritage week began with Feis Uaran Mor-Mearai, with children of the parish participating in poetry, singing and playing musical instruments.
A Sean-Nos Singing Workshop was held in the afternoon in Gaelscoil de hide by Mairead ni Fhlatharta, all-Ireland Oireachtas winner, who demonstrated the art of Sean-Nos singing.
Rith 2010 final stopover at Maldon Hotel. Tommy Keane and musicians of Gaelscoil de hide entertained participants of Rith 2010, the new national relay running event, at the final stopover on Monday night at the Maldron Hotel.
Comhaltas Ceoltoiri Eireann ‘Seisiun na nOg’
Richard Murray, hosted Seisiun na nOg in the Library on Tuesday afternoon with fellow musician, Johnny Ringo McDonagh. Young musicians attended the seisiun with instruments ranging from flutes, concertinas, fiddles, saxophone, bagpipes and bodrans. Johnny McDonagh gave the young musicians a demonstration on the bodran and after each child played a tune of their choice on their chosen instrument, Richard picked a tune for all the musicians to play together. The seisiun was thoroughly enjoyed by all and it was agreed that it should be a regular event.
St. Patrick’s Day Parade
The culmination of a weeklong celebration of Culture & Heritage was the St Patrick’s Day Parade. Oranmore celebrated its 8th annual St Patrick’s Day parade with a blaze of colour in glorious sunshine. The theme of this year’s parade was “Back to the Future” and leading the parade, as grand marshals, were four children from the local schools who represented the multicultural diverse population of Oranmore.