Forty three Galway community groups will be saying a Big Hello to mark Ireland’s first National Community Weekend.

The Big Hello, which is an initiative by the Department for Rural and Community Development, will take place over the whole of the forthcoming Bank Holiday Weekend.

The groups have received a total of €20,000 split between Galway city and county.

Galway East TD and Minister for Community Development Seán Canney: “This is an exciting national event aimed at giving people an opportunity to come together as a community.

“Our mobile social networks are creating virtual communities but we need to ensure that we keep up our face to face engagements with neighbours and friends.

“I want to thank Galway County Council and Galway City Council for their part in administering the grants for the community groups.”

A wide variety of events will make up the Big Hello, including a community event in the Square, Athenry, that will include a world record attempt for the most people playing The Fields of Athenry on the tin whistle, an American Tea Party on Lawrencetown Village Green as part of the Community Development Group’s campaign to reduce food waste, an art exhibition by Gort Cancer Support Group, a family fun day at Ballyglunin Railway Station and an open day and barbecue at Tuam Men’s Shed.

Other featured events include: A public consultation and information event by Abbey Community Development Association about plans for the village, followed by entertainment; an inter-generational event for residents of the Brothers of Charity home, the nursing home,TY students and new residents, to include music, bingo and lunch at Ballindereen Community Centre; and an inter-generational event by South East Galway IRD Ltd called Stories & Tea, to share stories about the history of the Irish Workhouse Centre in Portumna, and family and local history, followed by refreshments.

As part of the Big Hello weekend, Minister Canney will be formally opening the extension of the Knockma Hill Trail on Monday May 6 at 4pm. The event is being organised by the Caherlistrane and Kilcoona Community Council and will include music and refreshments.

For more information, contact Minister Canney on 086-2513639
April 30 2019