The pride and passion of the Ballintubber GAA club in winning their first Mayo senior football title in 2010 is to feature in a special insightful documentary on TG4 this Christmas. Baile an Tobair – Bliain an Bhua relives the amazing journey of the Ballintubber senior football team from the desolate ranks of junior football a few years back to the exalted highs of Mayo senior football champions in 2010. This intriguing story unfolds as the club in the shadow of Ballintubber Abbey celebrates its centenary also this year, having being founded in 1910. Baile an Tobair – Bliain an Bhua echoes and mirrors the life of every GAA club in the country with success and failure, heartbreak and jubilation, pain and passion all interwoven into one.
“This small rural close-knit community encountered tragedy and triumph in equal measures over the years but yet the bond that kept them going was community spirit and sport,” stated the programme producer Piaras Ó Raghallaigh from Maigh Eo Media.
“Baile an Tobair – Bliain an Bhua is about people, passion, and the wonderful pride and loyalty they have for their club and community. There is joy and sadness in this programme, there is celebration and camaraderie, and there is a great sense of achievement also throughout,” he said.
The programme features discerning interviews with newly appointed Mayo senior football team manager James Horan, club star Cillian Ó Connor, and club members Michael Duffy, Tony O’Connor, Art Ó Suilleabháin, and Nora Conroy.
The programme also features archive footage of Ballintubber native Paddy Prendergast playing for Mayo in the early fifties when he won two All-Ireland senior football medals with his county in Croke Park. Mayo GAA secretary Sean Feeney talks for the first time in Baile an Tobair – Bliain an Bhua about the tragic drowning of his brother and club stalwart Ger Feeney during the year and how the club coped with his loss to go on to lift the Moclair Cup in his honour.
There is also great excitement captured in this programme as star players Cillian and Ruairí O’Connor bring the Championship cup to Ballintubber National School for the first time. Baile an Tobair – Bliain an Bhua will be broadcast on TG4 on Wednesday, December 29 at 7.15pm.
Parke celebrate forty years with a new book chronicling its history
Parke GAA Club has launched its 40th anniversary commemorative book which is entitled CLCG Fóchumann An Pháirc - Ceathaireacha Bliain ag Fás or Parke GAA Club – 40 Years Growing. The book, which has been receiving great reviews since it was launched, is a pictorial rewind over the 40 years of the club’s existence and is peppered with insights into the origins of football in the area as far back as the 1930s and 1940s. Many past and current members of the club have contributed articles and photographs which will make for interesting fireside reading and viewing over Christmas and the New Year. The book is accompanied by a DVD which has recordings of many of the important finals won and lost over the period of the club’s existence. This impressive publication is on general sale and is available as a book only or as a book and DVD. Copies are available for sale at Turlough Stores, Lyons’s late and early on Davitt’s Terrace in Castlebar or by contacting Frank Cloherty on 087 138 4822.
Early new year start for Horan’s Mayo
James Horan will dip his toes into the world of inter-county management for the first time in the early new year when Mayo kick off their 2011 senior inter-county campaign in the FBD League. First stop for Mayo will be away to Leitrim in the FBD League on January 9 when they take on the north Connacht men in Ballinamore at 2pm. The following week in Ballinrobe, Mayo will host GMIT at 2pm on Sunday January 16 also at 2pm. The final group game will see Connacht Champions Roscommon making the short trip to Ballyhaunis to take on Horan’s men. The home final of the competition has been pencilled in for the last Sunday in January.
Horan will have to contend without some of his potential stars in the FBD League with the third level institutions getting first pick on players. NUIG who this year are under the guidance of John Maughan have selected two of Mayo’s front line players for their squad with both Alan Dillon and Peadar Gardiner lining out for the Galway college. Also joining them in the NUIG squad is Castlebar Mitchels’ hotshot Neil Douglas. GMIT has also called first pick on both Niall Prenty and Brendan Walsh, while Tom Parsons and Kevin Keane will be wearing the black of Sligo IT for the provincial competition.