How we met the Queen

A hundred years after a Tralee woman heroically saved children from a bombing raid on a London school, her relatives were back in the UK last week to mark the centenary - and to meet the Queen.

Fr Sean Hanafin and his sister Patricia Hanafin Nolan attended the 100th anniversary ceremony honouring their cousin Mary O'Donnell, who heroically pulled children from a burning school during a german bomb raid on June 13th 1917.

What happened in Kerry this week

The future of Kerry Airport and and the Macroom bypass are already on the government's agenda, as the county's newest Junior Minster got straight down to business this  week. Less than 48 hours after his appointment, Minster of State Brendan Griffin met with Transport Minister Shane Ross and top officials in his department yesterday to outline his key priorities.

Prefabs up to forty years old are to be finally torn down at Presentation Secondary School in Listowel, and replaced by a brand new building at a cost of just under €1m. Works will also include a brand new entrance on the Ballybunion Road, alleviating traffic congestion for the busy school, according to principal Eileen Kennelly.

Killarney National Park’s status as an international biosphere reserve has been extended by UNESCO - despite a call last December to have the special status suspended amidst concerns over the management and the spread of invasive species such as the rhododendron.Kenmare was crowned Ireland’s Best-Kept Small Town at a ceremony in Dublin on Tuesday - making it the fourth time the town has won the award. Kenmare was chosen to enter the 32-county competition following their success in the annual Tidy Towns Competition.

Gardaí this week promised a clampdown on bogus callers targeting the elderly in their homes. Conmen calling door to door offering to carry out household jobs are targeting the elderly and vulnerable across the county, and then either overcharging or stealing money, gardaí warned.

Kerry rivalled some of the world’s best holiday destinations this week as Valentia recorded a high of 26 degrees on Tuesday - and an amazing 23 celsius at 1am on Wednedsay morning!

Disgust at callout delay

Rescue crews in North Kerry are urging beachgoers to take their rubbish home - after discarded glass bottles almost hampered an emergency callout.

Eighteen rescuers from Ballybunion Sea and Cliff Rescue along with Ballybunion Coastguard Unit sprang into action on Sunday evening to locate two missing locals who were overdue from a kayaking trip.

Summer and sunsets turn up the heat at local beaches

Kerry rivaled some of the world’s best holiday destinations this week as Valentia recorded a high of 26 degrees on Tuesday - and sun worshippers from all over the county made their way to their nearest beaches to enjoy the warm, sunny weather.

The county experienced a good spell of heat over last weekend and early part of this week as temperatures rose from 18 degrees last Saturday all the way up to a sunny 26 degrees on Tuesday.

Lucy lives with Deputy Healy-Rae

TD Michael Healy-Rae will join the ranks of celebrities like Samantha Mumba, Kerry Katona, Jedward and Calum Best when he appears on the next season of TV series Livin’ with Lucy.

The popular series sees presenter Lucy Kennedy living with celebrities in their home for a week.

The latest series is currently being filmed and Lucy has been living with Deputy Michael Healy-Rae at his home in Kilgarvan, to experience up close the life of a Kerry TD.

 

Medieval game a sell-out

It was all about things medieval last week for the launch of a new board game ‘Dragons Reign’ made by two young Ballyheigue pupils which saw a fantastic turnout of parents, current and past pupils.

All the handmade games sold out on the night in Bouleenshere National School, which was decorated with transformed for the occasion with medieval weapons, tapestries, drawings of dragons by the children and a smoke filled corridor to add to the atmosphere.

 

30 families to host Belarusian children

There is just over a week to go until eighteen children from Kozhan in Southern Belarus visit Kerry for a trip of a lifetime that will help boost their immune system and allow them to forge connections with local families.

Over thirty host families from Tralee and North Kerry will open their homes to the children on July 3rd.  The countdown to the arrival of the ten boys and eight girls is well and truly underway, and the host families are putting the final pieces in place in preparation for their arrival.

 

Alana loses locks for Little Princess

Nine-year-old Alana O’Mahoney from Castleisland is catching people’s eye this week with her shorter hair style - after she cut eleven inches from her long blonde hair to help sick children and she also raised over €1,000 for the charity.

Kindhearted Alana - the daughter of Noreen and Donal O’Mahoney - spent the past year and a half growing her beautiful long blonde hair because she wanted to donate it to The Little Princess Trust to help make a wig for sick children.

 

Locals knit comfort blankiesfor cancer patients

Comfort is vital for cancer patients - and now they can have a specially created blanket to use while receiving treatment or travelling to and from hospital, thanks to knitters across the county and the Blankets of Hope initiative.

The Blankets of Hope idea was conceived by Cork woman, Ann Dowley Spillane, while she was undergoing cancer treatment herself.

She found that the blankets in the hospitals were uncomfortable and came up with the idea of making softer ones for fellow patients.

 

It's gonna be fairy, fairy good!

A sprinkle of fairy dust and all will be revealed as the fairies are ready to reveal themselves in Kilflynn this weekend for the annual Kilflynn Enchanted Fairy Festival.

Over the course of Saturday and Sunday thousands are expected to descend on the North Kerry village where knights, wizards, potions and fairy trails will lead the way along a magical journey that leaves children mesmerised.

 

Summer arrives in Tralee

The weather couldn’t have been better last weekend for Féile na mBláth - as people turned out in their droves to enjoy the non-stop entertainment as part of the festival which took place from Friday to Sunday.

The festival was officially launched by Mayor of Tralee Terry O’Brien on Friday evening and began with the Pedal in the Park event which saw over 100 cyclists take part. The entertainment continued into the night as 300 people attended the open air screening of Sing Street in Tralee Town Park.

Tralee honours business best

Tralee business people were celebrated for their commitment to their customers and for their contribution to the town last Thursday, at the Tralee Chamber Alliance Business People Awards.

The legacy of Kevin Benner - of Benner’s Hardware on Bridge Street - was also celebrated as his son Adrian was presented with a special life achievement award on behalf of his late father.

'Kerry people speak another English!'

When Álmos Sumegi, Andrea Dobos and their daughter Aisa, decided to move to Ireland from Hungary, the most important thing was that they had to live close to the water.

The family looked at locations in Kinsale, Dublin and Cork. They’d never heard of Cahersiveen, but having seen a house online, they were sold on the area, and found themselves moving to Kerry.

The family has been living in Cahersiveen for exactly a year now, and have no regrets about their big move.