TONY WILL MAKE HISTORY- A young Callan man is hoping to make a little piece of history next Sunday when he hopes to win back to back McCalmont Cup medals. On Sunday he hopes to win his cup medal with Newpark ‘A’ team when they take on Brookville in what should be an intriguing final. In 2012 Tony was part of the Callan United team who ironically beat Newpark ‘A’ in that game and went on to the McCalmont Cup for the first time in forty years. That beautiful warm day, Tony was a 51st minute substitution for Joey Byrne and made an immediate impact on the game, in fact his introduction was probably the telling moment that turned the game in Callans favour. Tony signed for Newpark in the close season and has been the driving force behind Newpark’s push to be crowned champions of Division 1 and will now play in the Premiership next season. Winning next Sunday will certainly put Tony in a unique place in the history of the McCalmont cup. There are plenty of players who have won two or more McCalmont cup medals with different clubs but there are certainly very few if any that have won medals back to back with two separate clubs. Best of luck to Tony next Sunday and no doubt many of his family and former team mates will be in Derdimus to cheer him on.
THE LADIES IN A SHOW OF STRENGTH- It is a known fact that Ladies football is the fastest growing sport in Ireland and what is more telling is the fact that a lot of the clubs been formed are not traditional footballing areas. Over the past 10 years ladies football has received a lot of coverage and with its growing popularity is also getting greater television coverage. Well Judging from the turnout at the inaugural training session for Ladies Football last Thursday at John Locke Park there is considerable interest amongst the young ladies in Callan and surrounds for the sport and looks as if a solid club is been formed and will compete for forthcoming summer. Team manager Bosco Bryan and Coach Eoghan Fahey were delighted with the enthusiasm shown by the ladies and certainly having spoken to a number of the girls they were delighted with the first training session. The formation of the new John Lockes Gaelic Football team will certainly a major boost to the club and no doubt the new Astroturf hall will be busy during the winter with Gaelic football coaching. Initially because of numbers training is for ladies from 15 years of age and over with a number of minor and adult blitzes pencilled in for later in the summer the club hope that it will be an enjoyable experience for all concerned. Training continues this Thursday night at 7.30pm and all are welcome. Registration fees for ladies football are €50 for adults and €30 for Under-18’s. Fees will be taken this week and payment can be staggered in stages if desired.
FIELD DAY- The John Lockes Club will hold its second annual field day on Bank Holiday Sunday 2nd June in John Locke Park. It promises to be a great days entertainment with the usual selection of slides and bouncing castle for the small children, games of skill for the older children and also a number of tests similar to those as seen on TV ‘THE CUBE’ to test the skill of the most determined players. A dog show, a sports day for the different age groups, a raffle for trailer loads of timber, a barbeque, tea tent, a ladies football exhibition match and loads of ice cream on what hopefully will be a weekend worthy of the name Summer. Of course there will be an opportunity for all to view the new club room at John Lockes Park where there will be club members on hand to show people the new building. Admission will be free for children while adult admission will be €3
CALLAN UNITED- - Callan made the long journey on Sunday morning to Graignamanagh to play Highview Athletic in a crucial game. This was a must win game for Callan which would see them secure Division 1 football next year, on the other hand Highview, already relegated had nothing to play for about. Callan looked dangerous from the very start and with about 25 minutes gone they went one goal up. A wonderful piece of skill from John Mark Egan saw Callan off the mark when he shot to the bottom corner. Callan didn’t rest on their laurels though and pushed on adding five more goals throughout the game. As always Simon Burke was the master of ceremonies scoring all of the remaining five goals. He scored 2 great penalties one with a cheeky chip and the other smashed in the corner with the other three goals been trademark Simon. Its division one soccer for Callan again next season, can it be classified as a satisfactory season, yes because of another great cup run, but not so good regarding the league. But no doubt manager Peter Kearney will be setting out his plans for next season to make a push for Premiership Football.
JUVENILE SOCCER- The Callan United Under 13 team took on a strong Evergreen A side in the cup last week. The Callan lads played well but Evergreen were too strong to contain and ran out impressive winners. It wasn’t to be but no doubt the lads will be back next year. Hard luck boys.
The Under 16 Callan lads faced Freebooters B in the cup Tuesday last. They had already beaten them twice in the league so they knew they had the beating of them. Although the cup is a different story and it proved to be that way in the first half Freebooters creating more chances. Callan settled better in the second half though and were awarded a penalty which was saved but minutes later Brion Kirwan put the ball in the net and Callan pressed on again. An excellent run from Lewis Murray led to the second going past two defenders leaving them for dead and it was Bassong Eyong who tapped the ball over the line. They are now through to the quarter- final of the cup and have two matches left in the league. One win would see them win back-to-back league titles so best of luck and well done boys
PATTERN MASS- The Annual Pattern Mass will take place at St. Marys Cemetary Ballykeeffe next Sunday evening May 26th at 7.30pm. There are many connections with Ballycallan and Kilmanagh in Callan so this Mass is always of interest to many.
DROICHEAD CENTRE- FUNKY FUN SUMMER CAMP - A summer camp will take place in Droichead FRC, Mill St. Callan on July 15th until July 19th from 9.30am – 2pm each day at a very competitive price of €40. The camp will cater for groups aged - (4 yrs to 7yrs) & (8 yrs to 11yrs). Activities Include - Water Fights and Water Games, Dance, Art Day, Treasure Hunts, Sports, Reptile Village Display and lots more. To avoid disappointment please book your place now. Fee must be paid by July 5th. Contact Maggie on 0860722893.
SUMMER YOUTH ART PROGRAMME-This will be a one week Art programme for youth aged from 12 to 16 years. This project will be aimed at young people in the Callan area and hinterland. The programme will help develop their artistic talents and bring out their creative side. This course will explore many materials, textures & fabrics to create a unique piece of work that can be put on display for people to see the great talents of Callan youth. The cost of this programme is €30 and must be paid in full in advance to book a space as places are limited. This project is funded by Kilkenny VEC.
COMPUTER COURSE- Once off low cost beginner’s & improvers computer course- Learn to use the internet, email, skype & basic digital photography etc. Classes will cost ONLY €10 for 5 lessons. Morning and evening courses available. Call 056 77 555 19 ext. 1 to book a place.
WOMENS PROGRAMME- ‘Time out for Women’ is a social and educational project for women in Callan and its hinterland that provides training on a wide range of informational and practical topics. This programme will be run 2 days per week for 6 weeks from 9.30am - 12.30pm. It will start on Thursday, May 23rd and will run every Thursday and Friday for 6 weeks. The programme will involve art, drama, music, calligraphy & stress management. Call 056 77 555 19 ext. 1 to book a place. This course will cost €10 for the 6 weeks and must be paid in advance to book your place. The course is funded by Kilkenny VEC.
PROFESSIONAL COUNSELLING AVAILABLE- Are you feeling stressed from financial pressure or any other life challenges and need to talk to someone? You can avail of very low cost counselling in Droichead FRC. To make an appointment please call (Male counsellor) 087 77 52493 or (Female counsellor) 086 10 39244.
CALLAN GUN CLUB RAFFLE- Callan Gun Club are presently holding a raffle to raise funds. 1st prize 2 tickets for Bruce Springsteen in Nowlan Park and various other prizes. A cabaret will be held in the Steppes bar on Saturday 1st June. Tickets for raffle can be purchased from any club member or Michael Maher Great Gas or Ray Hackett Bridge Street. Tickets are €2 each or €5 for 3. Your support would be greatly appreciated.
BUS TO BIG GAME- It is less than three weeks away before Kilkenny commence their Leinster championship and in turn attempt to win back the Bob O’Keeffe cup and of course the McCarthy Cup. Kilkenny face Offaly in the Leinster Quarter Final on Sunday 9th June in Tullamore. A bus will leave from the Parish Church on the morning of the game at 10.30am. Bosco Bryan is presently taking bookings for the bus and its first come first served by Bosco, so give him a shout.
GATHERING AT COOLAGH- The machines are cranking up a gear in relation to the Gathering Event to be held at Coolagh later this summer. The Coolagh Committee are making preparations to mark the year of the Gathering. The evening of July 20th is the date for your diary. At 7.30 Bishop Seamus Freeman will lead the locals and visitors to remember all Coolagh people that have gone to their eternal reward. This Ceremony will be held at the burial ground on Coolaghmore Hill, adjacent to the medieval monastic ruins. It is expected many emigrants and their Families will return for this celebration. After the Remembrance Ceremony, an evening of food, music and song will be held nearby. All locals and their Families are welcome. Any residents with relations intending to travel home for the event, whether they were born around Coolagh, or are first or second generation Irish are asked to forward their names to Joan O’Keeffe, Courtnaboola, Callan, Secretary of the Coolagh Club. This promises to be an eventful evening of nostalgia and fun, so if you are reading this column in Donegal or Kerry, London or Liverpool, make plans to travel to celebrate and enjoy an evening of culture on the hills of Coolagh.