Welcome to the Irish Culture & Customs newsletter which is published every weekend and sent out to nearly 1900 readers all over the world. You are receiving this newsletter because you signed up for it - God Bless you! If you'd like to read past issues, they are archived at: http://www.yourmailinglistprovider.com/pubarchive.php?Herself
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Greetings and blessings to all,

Hello from sticky and steamy, hot and humid Ohio. It feels more like August than May with temperatures near 90 and a dewpoint that makes it very uncomfortable. We haven't turned on the A/C... yet.

Fortunately, we escaped the violent storms this weather pattern brought to parts of the Plains and Midwest yesterday - if you live in those areas, fingers crossed you and your loved ones are safe.

It was another busy week in the Haggerty household, especially for Bridget who got the proofs for the 2nd edition of the wedding book from the printer; she's hoping to have the edits finished this weekend. We enjoyed visits with the grandchildren and their parents, and we began clearing out our office areas in anticipation of selling the house. We've accumulated so much stuff over the years, and ironically, we really don't want most of it anymore. So, more books have gone up on Amazon for sale. Over the past few months, we've sold quite a few - and at a much better price than we'd get at a yard sale. Of course, when we do sell a book or CD, it means packaging them up and a trip to the post office. So that was also on our agenda as we sold three this past week. When we got home, we'd sold another - so we'll be repeating the process on Monday.

The long-awaited cicada invasion has started in earnest. What began as just a trickle is now millions of 'em creating a very loud and annoying racket all around us. The teenager next door caddies at a golf course nearby and he said there are so many of them, it's making it impossible to play. Not all of the outdoor news is negative; our Catalpa tree is in full bloom, the Clematis vines are in flower, early Phlox is making a show and Coreopsis are opening up all over the flower beds. We're sure going to miss this spring parade of flora!

Enough about us...
Please help us to keep this newsletter free - visit our good friends, LollySmith:
For the Dads, Grads and Lads on your list, come take a look at our wide range of handsome gifts - from great-looking Guinness gear to genuine blackthorn walking sticks! The man of the house might also enjoy one of our new Irish Mustards made in Co. Tipperary, or how about an Ireland Licence Plate? Come explore what we have on offer - browse to your heart's content, and remember, when you buy from Lollysmith, you'll always enjoy great prices, quick shipping, and friendly, personalized service.
In news from Ireland:
General - May is the month for First Holy Communions and the traditional gift is money. Amazingly, some Irish children receive as much as 1,000 euros from family and friends!

Armagh - Thirty-two disabled friendly fishing stands will be erected along the River Bann at Kinnego Marina.

Cavan - The Cootehill Line Dancers returned from the recent All Ireland Finals with a total of seven first place cups and, for the third consecutive year, the title of All Ireland Club Dancing Champions.

Derry - Hugh O'Donnell, a seventy-five year old pensioner who lives alone in the Sperrin Mountains has been linked up to the water network after the Citizens' Advice Bureau took up his case.

Dublin - The Celtic scholar, Professor Proinsias MacCana, has passed away at his home. (RIP) He was an internationally-renowned philologist and literary historian and up until his death was Professor Emeritus of the School of Celtic Studies at the Dublin Institute of Advanced Studies.

Donegal - Isobell Rogers from Letterkenny discovered she had a Lotto win of over €1.8m.- on the eve of birthday!

Donegal - There have been three more discoveries at an ancient burial site on David Patterson's farm at Liscooley, near Castlefin. Archaeologists have unearthed what they believe to be a Bronze Age cist cemetery.

Kerry - After resolving the issue of securing insurance coverage, pony and trap trips through one of Kerry's famous mountain passes are up and running. Well, not quite. While tour operators are happy to be able to offer this service again, it is too late for them to include the trips in their 2004 schedule.

Sligo - Traditional band Dervish has high hopes for their hometown of Sligo, pushing for it to become Ireland's equivalent to Nashville or Memphis, a music-themed city. The members of Dervish aren't the first musical advocates to hail from Sligo. Michael Coleman, famed as the greatest Irish fiddle player of all time, introduced his talent in the "Sligo-style" of fiddle playing and his culture to New York in 1914.

Tyrone - Superstar athletes will be on hand to launch the new state-of-the-art sports centre at Loughry College, outside Cookstown. Scheduled to appear at the ribbon-cutting ceremony are legendary footballers Peter Canavan and Aaron Hughes, as well as rugby star Tyrone Howe and hockey great Martin Sloan.

Waterford - The Minister for the Environment, Mr Cullen, is set to order a full archaeological excavation of the Viking site at Woodstown in Waterford, even though it will delay the city's bypass by at least a year. Mr Cullen said the site, which dates from the ninth century, was of "enormous importance internationally" and had already yielded some "quite extraordinary" finds, including lead weights and gaming pieces.

Waterford - A banner measuring one hundred and twenty by seventy feet has been erected on a disused building on the North Quays in Waterford city to mark the city's hosting of the Tall Ships' Race 2005.

In news from all over
Hollywood California - A Co. Galway-based television company has won a prestigious 2004Emmy Award in the United States. The award for Telegael's animated television series Tutenstein was presented at the Daytime Creative Arts awards in the Kodak Theatre - home of the Oscar ceremonies - last Saturday night.

From the mailbag:
Our generous Trivia Contest sponsor, Dublin artist Roger Cummiskey, wrote to tell us that two Irish-American publications had asked if they could publish some of his images for their June editions, both print and on line. He was delighted to give his permission. So, next month, check out:

Links of the week:
Jack & Vivian of the Irish page have posted another Turlough O'Carolan composition called Seán O'Hart. He was a Catholic bishop in Ireland during the penal days when being a bishop could mean arrest and imprisonment - or worse. To read the lyrics in English and Irish, and to hear the melody, click

If you want to know what's on offer for fun in Ireland, click

If you yearn to see Kylemore Abbey, here's the next best thing:

It's another IQ test - this one was sent in by Hartson - thank you!

And last, but definitely not least - our on-going gift to AG in California and all friends to animals, please click this link today and everyday. It only takes a second to feed an animal. Thanks!

Enough of the blither and blather - on with the update:

A Bit of The Wit
Joke of The Week
Did You Know?
Quotes & Quips
Know Your Irish Writers & Books?
New This Week
The Week Ahead
Said of a man who overstays his welcome:
"If he went to a wedding, he'd wait for the christening."
Morris walks out into the street and hails a taxi just going by. He gets into the taxi, and the cabbie says, "Perfect timing. You're just like Liam." "Who?" "Liam O'Connor. There's a lad who did everything right. Like my coming along when you needed a cab. It would have happened like that to Liam.""Every path has its puddle" says Morris." "It wasn't like that with Liam," says the cabbie."He was a brilliant athlete. He could have played football for Kerry. He could golf with the pros. He sang like Ronan Tynon and he danced like Michael Flatley. What's more, he had a memory like Methusalah. He could remember everyone's birthday. He knew all about wine, which fork to eat with. He could fix anything. Not like me. I change a fuse, and the whole town goes out.""No wonder you remember him." says Morris. "Well, I never actually met the man." "Then how do you know so much about him?" asks Morris. "I married his widow."
1. Polo was played for the first time in Europe in Co. Limerick? In 1868, having seen the game played by tribesmen in India, members of the British Army 10th Hussar Regiment stationed in Limerick returned to their base and organized a match with the local gentry.
2. While he was born in Scotland, Conan Doyle, creator of Sherlock Holmes, was Irish? He was the eldest son of 10 siblings born to emigrants Charles Doyle and Mary Foley.
3. According to old Irish folklore, eating young nettles three times in May will keep the rheumatics away for a year?
Two good things: a young man courting, an old man smoking. Two bad things: an old man courting, a young man smoking. Irish Proverb from Co. Wexford.
First off, the answers to last week's quiz:
1. Shadowy Heroes: Irish Literature of the 1890s - Wayne E. Hall
2. Great Irish Heroes - Danny Conlon, Alan Barter
3. A Cut Above the Rest: Irish Sporting Heroes - Colm Kean

A round of pints and applause for this week's literary sleuths:

Helen Dowd
Do you want to know about publishing your book? Visit PublishAmerica at: http://www.publishamerica.com/index.asp

Hartson Dowd
Sacred Space is a prayer site is produced by the Irish Jesuits

Déirdre McKiernan Hetzler
"Glorious Ireland in May" - May 25 - June 8, 2004
Come visit our new website:

Patricia Edwards
This site is great for mythological e-cards and the like!

Sean Lavin
Working on a family tree? This site could be helpful:

Katie Donahue
If you're looking for an Irish website, this one lists hundreds in their directory:

Want to see your name and favorite site on our list? Try to find the following authors - we assure you, it's really easy. Who wrote:
1. The Irish Spirit: Proverbs, Superstitions and Fairytales
2. Irish Superstitions and Legends of Animals and Birds
3. The Good People - Authentic Irish Fairy Tales

Hint: You'll find all of the above titles and another great book on Irish superstitions here:

Send us the correct answers to two out of three and the rewards are:
1. If you have a web site, send us your URL plus a short description and we'll publish it in the next newsletter. If you don't have a web site, please nominate a favorite. Also, please remember that we list our sleuths in the order of entries received.
2. Receive a correct entry into the current "So You Think You're Irish" trivia contest. (In fairness to those of you who go to the trouble of actually finding the answers to the trivia contest, you'll get a bonus entry!)
3. Click through on the Hint URL above, tell us the title and earn another entry into the Trivia drawing. NOTE: It would be very helpful if you would send your entries to: bhaggerty@irishcultureandcustoms.com
Please help us to keep this newsletter free - visit our good friends, LollySmith:
For the Dads, Grads and Lads on your list, come take a look at our wide range of handsome gifts - from great-looking Guinness gear to genuine blackthorn walking sticks! The man of the house might also enjoy one of our new Irish Mustards made in Co. Tipperary, or how about an Ireland Licence Plate? Come explore what we have on offer - browse to your heart's content, and remember, when you buy from Lollysmith, you'll always enjoy great prices, quick shipping, and friendly, personalized service.
Before we bring you our latest cranium crusher, the answer to last week's:
Q. What kind of cheese is made backwards?
A. Edam. Congrats to Katriona who was first in with the answer. We were swamped with responses - and many of you said it was too easy. So....we've tried our best to make this one more challenging. It's medieval - and we hope diabolically difficult!
My beak is bent downward, I burrow below; I grub in the ground and go as he guides, my gray old master, foe of the forest. Stoop-shouldered, my warder walks at my back, fares through the field, urges and drives me, sows in my track as I sniff along. Fetched from the wood, cunningly fitted, brought in a wagon, I have wondrous skill. As I go my way, on one side is green; on the other side plain is my dark path. Set through my back hangs a cunning spike; another fixed forward is fast to my head. What I tear with my teeth falls to one side, if he handles me right who is my ruler.
Q. What am I?
1. Home Page - See what's new or recycled at a glance:
2. New - Music Review: Saw Doctors Live in Galway
3. New - Culture Corner: Fleadh Cheoil (Festival of Music)
4. New - The Irish Kitchen: Lemon Scones and Clotted Cream
5. New - Kids' Ireland Culture Corner: The Texaco Children's Art Competition
6. New Column - Free Genealogy Q & A. Have a question about your Irish roots? Get an answer from a professional genealogist in Dublin
7. Republished - Article: Driving in Ireland, Part 2
8. Featured - Article: Clare the Banner County
9. Featured - Article: The Connemara Pony
10. Featured - Article: A Bit of The Blather
11. Featured - Article: St. Brendan the Navigator
12. On-Going - May Trivia Contest. As they say in the Irish Lotto, you can't win it if you're not in it, so send your entry before May 31. All entries must be in by midnight, whatever time zone you're in.
13. On-Going - Our eighth Novena began on on May 16 and continues through May 24. Please continue to remember Keith Matt Maupin being held hostage in Iraq and all members of our military serving there and all over the world, especially the children of personal friends, Paul and Ashley. We also ask that you continue to keep the following in your prayers or meditations: Debbie's family, Mary Jo Mauchen, Jane Leo, Doug, Ryan Declan, Eileen's brother Bob, her son Christopher, Maggie's family and friends, Bob and Kathy in Utah, Bertha, Rita, Lindsey, Dianne, Claire, C.J., baby Christopher, Sam, Steven & Margaret, and the Mulligans.
14. On-going - Irish News: Headlines for today and the past week. Note that we do our best to find the "good news"!
15. On-going -This month in Irish History:
16. Father's Day is coming up on June 20; we have a nice selection of gifts in our Men's Shop:

Bridget is working on a piece about the traditional farm at Muckross House; she's also bound and determined to write Co. Cork before May is out. We'll see. We'll also have a new basic Irish lesson on Tuesday and, per the usual routine, we'll publish a new blessing tomorrow, refresh the home page on Monday (new recipe as well) and post a new quote on Wednesday. News and history will be updated daily.

So, until next time, that's the lot, except for the "essential" goings-on in our crazy calendar - many of em' frivolous, but some serious: Today is Australia Flag Day, Maritime Day and the start of Safe Boating Week. On May 23, it's the anniversary of St. Oliver Plunkett's beatification, International Jazz Day, World Turtle Day and Penny Day. It's also the anniversary of when the United Irish Rebellion began in 1798. Monday is Victoria Day in Canada and National Escargot Day in the US. Tuesday is the beginning of Shavuot, the Feast of the Weeks, a Jewish holiday celebrating the harvest season; it also commemorates the anniversary of the giving of the Ten Commandments to Moses. (The 25th is also Tap Dance Day!) On May 26, it's Senior Health and Fitness Day, Sorry Day(?) in Australia, and also when we "celebrate" the Great American Grump Out! May 27 is the anniversary of when cellophane tape was invented; it's also the anniversary of the first commercial flight of Irish Sea Airways (now Aer Lingus) from Baldonnel to Bristol in 1926. Another anniversary on this date is that of the last barge on the Grand Canal making its final journey from Dublin to Limerick with a cargo of Guinness (1960). Finally, to round out the week, May 28 is Amnesty International Day. Celebrating a birthday, anniversary or other special event this week? We hope it's a joyous occasion for you and your loved ones! Can't wait to find out what's coming up for the rest of the month? Check out:

Before we part, we hope this edition finds you and your loved ones on the pig's back. We'd also like to say a special hello to our new subscribers - if you've enjoyed your first newsletter, please feel free to pass it on to family and friends and encourage them to sign up. Thank you.

In the coming week, may God grant you and your loved ones health, happiness and copious other blessings. And, as they say in Ireland, mind yourself!

Slan agus beannacht,

Bridget & Russ
Get down on your knees and thank God you're still on your feet
Are you a loyal reader of our newsletter? Your voluntary donation will help us keep sending it around the world each week. Please give whatever you can to Russ and Bridget, 5670 Meryton Place, Cincinnati, OH, 45224. Donations can also be made via PayPal at
Our email address there is haggertyr@primax.com
FREE shamrock seeds for any donation over $25! Many thanks in advance for your kindness.
Events & Classifieds
To avoid duplication, we list only those events not already mentioned in the Irish Heritage Newsletter - if you'd like to subscribe, just send a note to George at Steeler059@aol.com
And, if you're in Ireland, or lucky enough to be visiting, you can see what's on offer here:

ReJoyce Dublin 2004
Celebrating the centenary of Bloomsday, the day on which James Joyce's masterpiece "Ulysses" is set. Ireland is planning a world-class, five-month festival lasting until 31 August 2004. For more details, click

6th Int'l McManus Clan Association Gathering May 25th through May 31st
For full details please visit our website at:
or contact Phil McManus at Manus@aol.com

Dundrum, Dublin - June 1-June 20
Noted Dublin artist, Roger Cummiskey, invites you to an exhibition of his paintings based on the writings and wanderings of James Joyce. Exhibition will be held at The Airfield Trust, Upper Kilmacud Road. For more details, visit Roger's website at:

June 7th through 14th - 100 Years of the Abbey Theatre in Galway and Dublin. Trip includes 3 nights in Galway and 3 nights in Dublin. For more information, contact Kathleen Dixon Donnelly, Ph.D at kdonnellycom@aol.com

Fishtown/Philadelphia - June 12
2nd Support Our Troops Rally sponsored by the A.O.H/L.A.O.H Division 51 will take place at noon in Penn Treaty Park.
For more details, contact PHBowdrenSr@aol.com

Baltimore, Maryland - June 23
Frank McNamara, Ireland's beloved Maestro, will be conducting the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra in a performance with his newest venture, The American Tenors, at the Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall. For more details, please click

7th Clann McKenna Rally - June 25th through Sunday June 27th
For details, please write plunkettmckenna@eircom.net
or click on the following link:

Co. Sligo, Ireland - September
The Sligo Heritage and Genealogy centre is hosting a 4 day international conference on Irish genealogy, heritage and culture. Even if you come from another county, this conference will be of interest as experts in various fields of study from all over Ireland will be speaking on a wide range of topics. Preliminary details of the conference are available at:
Send an email to: bhaggerty@irishcultureandcustoms.com
OR click on this link: