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Rediscovering Maud Gonne

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THE LIFE, times, and personality of Maud Gonne will be vividly evoked in a new stage presentation by local theatre-makers Caroline Lynch and Sarah O’Toole, of Mephisto and Anam Theatre companies respectively. The show, which could be described as a dramatised lecture, takes place on Thursday February 26 at 1pm in NUI Galway’s Cube Theatre and admission is free.

The game of conkers

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In the days before television, computers, or iPads, children often had to be inventive to amuse themselves. When it came to street games they were well able to use their imaginations as they played games like Jackstones, O’Grady Says Do This, Tops, Queenie Queenie, Rover Red Rover, One Two Three Redlight, Jack Jack Show the Light, London Bridge is Falling Down, Cad, skipping, hobbies, marbles, and slides (in winter). Another traditional seasonal game, usually played in September, October, and November, was ‘conkers’ using the seeds of horse chestnut trees. The term conker applies to the tree as well as the seed and there are several theories as to where the name came from. The nut is found in a prickly case which falls from the tree. It is drilled using a nail, sometimes a compass (be careful not to stick yourself!), and then a piece of string is run through it with a knot tied at one end to secure the conker.

International award for kitchen designer and maker from Athlone

Mark Hand of Hand Built Designs, originally from Athlone, recently received the accolade of most outstanding designer in the inaugural Marion John Design Awards initiated by The Federation of Kitchen and Bathroom Designers.

Harty's Plains the principal bet

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Thursday’s highlight, the Guinness Galway Hurdle, is the richest race of its kind in the land and a total of 74 entries greeted senior handicapper Noel O'Brien who awarded last year’s controversial beaten favourite The Real Article top weight of 11st 10lbs, 5lbs above last year’s hero Moon Dice, with the Edward Harty trained Captain Cee Bee just one pound lower in the ratings.

New film club for Sonna

Westmeath Rural Arts are launching a film club in Sonna Hall on Friday May 7 at 8pm with the showing of a selection of films with Westmeath connections. The feature film for this first Film Friday will be The First Great Train Robbery (1979), directed by Michael Crichton and starring Sean Connery and Donald Sutherland, a significant part of which was filmed in Westmeath.


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