There are going to be 43 community events all over County Galway this Bank Holiday Weekend to mark the Big Hello, Ireland’s first ever National Community Weekend.
There are a huge variety of events taking place but they all have the same ambition – to bring people together.
We all have our virtual social networks but we need to keep up our face to face friendships.
My Department, the Department of Rural and Community Development, has provided €20,000 in support for the Galway community events, divided between the City and County.
Galway County Council and Galway City Council have administered the grants for the various initiatives.
Events in Galway East to mark the Big Hello include 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!
In Lawrencetown, there will be an American Tea Party on the village green as part of the Community Development Group’s campaign to reduce food waste, while Gort Cancer Support Group is running an art exhibition.
Ballyglunin Railway Station is having a family fun day, Tuam Men’s Shed is having an Open Day and Abbey Community Development Association will be holding a public consultation about plans for the village, followed by some entertainment.
Ballindereen Community Centre is hosting 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.
South East Galway IRD Ltd is running an inter-generational event called Stories and Tea, to share stories about the history of the Irish Workhouse Centre in Portumna, and family and local history, followed by refreshments.
On Monday May 6 at 4pm, I will be formally opening the extension of the Knockma Hill Trail as part of the Big Hello celebrations.
The event is being organised by Caherlistrane and Kilcoona Community Council and will include music and refreshments.