Scór is a GAA competition that combines all the colour and rivalry of gaelic games with the social/fun element of Ireland’s traditional past-times.
The competition was established by the GAA in 1969 with the aim of promoting Ireland’s traditional pastimes and culture while offering club members the chance to meet up, have fun and represent their club during the winter months while Football and Hurling had ceased.
Scór seeks to advance the aspiration of the GAA to actively support the Irish language, traditional Irish dancing, music, song, and other aspects of Irish culture, through a range of competitions at youth and adult levels, designed to encourage participation, enjoyment, inclusivity and excellence. It shall foster an awareness and love of the national ideals and assist in promoting a community spirit through its clubs at home and abroad.
Eight disciplines which comprise Scór
• Rince Foirne Figure or Ceilí Dancing
• Amhránaíocht Aonair Solo Singing
• Aithriseoireacht/scéalaíocht Recitation/Storytelling
• Bailéad Ghrúpa Ballad Group
• Nuachleas Novelty Act
• Ceol Uirlise Instrumental Music
• Rince seit Set Dancing
• Tráth na gCeist Quiz
Scór was historically divided into two main divisions namely Scór na nÓg and Scór Sinsear. There is Scór na bPaisti for national school children and this has become popular in many counties including Westmeath in recent years and adds a new element to the competition.
Scór has been inexistence in Westmeath since 1970 and in the past 51 years, Westmeath has embraced Scór fully with most, if not all, of the county’s 47 clubs having participated regularly for at least some portion of the past five decades. The average rate of participation circles around 20 clubs each year which is significant and up until the pandemic of the past twelve months, Scór in the county had remained remarkably vibrant.
There is a hard core of about ten clubs who always participate and they comprise a huge cross section of clubs from town to country though predominately it is the rural clubs who make up the bulk of participation in Scór.
Reflecting upon the participation of Westmeath representatives in Scór, the county has been fortunate to have good and very dedicated administrators over the years with the current county committee being ably led by Olive Leonard and Mary Doolin as Cathaoirleach agus Runai Scór Iarmhí.
The Scór committee gets its message across to the people in the county through the local papers through the excellent work of long standing PRO Johnny Hannify and there is a broad spectrum of club representatives who make up a working committee of 14 people.
So why does Scór remain popular?
Scór, in its three divisions, caters for a broad spectrum of people from ages five to 85 and older. It allows those members of GAA clubs who may have been ex players or may never have been to embrace the cultural end of club life.
In Westmeath this has manifested itself in healthy club rivalries which can sometimes get heated but always remain respectful and it is sych respect which generates the interest over the years.
Scór is a family, a wide ranging unit where contacts and friendships made remain throughout peoples lives. It provides an outlet in the winter months and is in fact the grandparent of all modern day talent shows which presently grace visual media.