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Greetings and blessings to all,

Hello from steamy, stifling Ohio where the heat goes on. God help us! We hope this edition finds you on the pig's back, as fit as a fiddle, and as cool as an ocean breeze off the coast of Kerry.

We have a lot to cover and a limited amount of space so we're going to get right on with it except to say thank you so much to everyone who sent us messages and condolence cards. They have been a great comfort to us. And for many of you who knew Russ' mother, you can access her obituary in the Washington Post here:

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News from Ireland
What is the top Irish movie of all time? That is what Jameson whiskey in conjunction with 'The Dubliner' magazine asked 10,000 people in a recent poll designed to find out the top 10 Irish movies off all time. After all the votes were counted Alan Parker's 1991 adaptation of Roddy Doyle's 'The Commitments' held down the top spot. But if the list is any indication it is Dublin director Jim Sheridan who has had the largest impact on Irish cinema, landing three of his films ('My Left Foot', 'In the Name of the Father' and 'The Field') in the top ten. The rest of the top ten rounds out like this:
2) 'My Left Foot'
3) 'In the Name of the Father'
4) 'The Quiet Man'
5) 'The Snapper'
6) 'Michael Collins'
7) 'The Field'
8) 'Intermission'
9) 'Veronica Guerin'
10) 'Inside I'm Dancing'
ED. NOTE: Agree or disagree? Send us your nominations and if we get enough responses, we'll publish our own list in the next edition.

All Irish citizens aged over 65 will be entitled to get free passports beginning next month; Foreign Affairs Minister Dermot Ahern announced the plan, the first of its kind in Europe.

Photo contest seeks new postcard image
A picture-postcard Ireland where freckle-faced, red-haired children waved at tourists and where donkeys pulled carts piled with turf is set to get a makeover. In the 1960s, Belgian photographer John Hinde's work resulted in a series of classic postcards that portrayed an Ireland of white-washed cottages and quiet country roads in colours . Now both tourists and Irish holidaymakers are being asked to come up with their own photographic ideas which manage to evoke a contemporary sense of time and place. The winning photograph will be used on a postcard to be sold nationwide. The competition is restricted to amateur photographers and entries can be submitted in any of three categories: scenery/nature, people, and places. All entries must be submitted online through Go.Ireland.com by September 9.

Donegal: English names out, Irish names in
The launch took place this week at Glenveagh Visitors Centre of the county council's Placenames Policy Committee which plans to encourage Irish names for Donegal estates rather than some of those proposed, such as Windsor Downs or Tudor Heights.

Musicians Leo and Baba Brennan have been honoured with the Freedom of Donegal for their musical legacy. The couple are the parents of members of Clannad, and solo artists Enya and Moya.

Dublin: Locals Cry 'Bingo' As Bridge Opens
It's already dubbed the "Bingo Bridge" by locals, uniting as it does the long-running weekly games in Pearse Street on the southside and Sheriff Street on the north. But Dublin's newest Liffey crossing was officially named the Seán O'Casey Bridge.

Galway: Synge For Your Supper...
and breakfast and lunch. Directed by Garry Hynes, the Druid Theatre Company is putting on on 8 1/2 hour performances of six Synge plays at the Town Hall. . At the end of this month, The Synge Cycle will tour to Dublin and Edinburgh.

Laois: Firmly planted in record books
Laois may be many things to many people but for tree lovers Laois is the place to visit the oldest oak tree in Ireland. This oldest of Irish common oaks (quercus robur) is located in the Abbey Leix Estate and is estimated to be over seven hundred years old; the tree is mentioned in records as far back as 1660.

Louth: Medieval remains of 500 people found
Archaeologists working on the new Dundalk-Newry ring road have found the ancient remains of over 500 people in a ring fort cemetery. The site, just north of the Co Louth town, was uncovered as part of an archeological investigation being carried out along the 15.9km route prior to the construction work which is expected to start shortly.

Monaghan: New holiday homes at Castle Leslie
Some twenty-eight holiday cottages are to be built in the grounds of Castle Leslie, in the village of Glaslough. The present owner of the castle is Samantha Leslie and it was the venue chosen for the wedding of Sir Paul McCartney and Heather Mills three years ago.

Offaly: Lairakeen estate on the market
Lairakeen House in Banagher has received the final addition to its restoration work by singer and songwriter Roger Whittaker and his wife Natalie, who took on the rebuilding work as a retirement project. The couple are now selling the Victorian residence and the estate of fifty-three acres and will be moving into a restored convent in the town.

Sligo: Dolly's Cottage group launch anthology
Kelly's pub in Strandhill was the venue recently for the launch of an anthology of prose and poetry from a group of thirty-six writers who have been attending workshops in Dolly's Cottage. The Writers Inc group have fittingly called their book "Dolly Mixtures" after the cottage where their work was created; the two-hundred-year-old cottage was named after its last owner, Dolly Higgins, and it was purchased by the Strandhill guild of the ICA after her death in 1970.

Tyrone: Goodbye to tiny primary school
St Mary's Primary School in Laught, between Omagh and Drumquin, has closed its doors for the last time in its forty six-year history. The tiny school, which had only nine pupils, cannot survive any longer since there are too few children in the area.

From around the world:
London, England: Two Irish garden designers have won a silver-gilt medal at the Hampton Court Palace Flower Show. The team of Oliver and Liat Schurmann, owners of Mount Venous Nursery in Rathfarnham, split second place with another team. The Dublin-based pair competed in the water garden category inspired by the water and island landscapes of Cork and Kerry.

New York: Geraldine Fitzgerald RIP
The well-known actress who appeared in such classic 1930s films as "Dark Victory" and "Wuthering Heights" and later had a career on the New York stage, has died after a long battle with Alzheimer's disease. She was

Quebec, Canada: Garda Damien Gormley from Galway recently took part in the World Police and Fire Games; he did not come back empty-handed. The twenty-four-year-old won both a silver and a bronze in Karate. The games are the second biggest sporting event internationally after the Olympics.

From the mailbag:

After the recent terrible events in London, Alex Gilmore sent us the following really great idea: The Ambulance Service have launched a national "In case of Emergency (ICE)" campaign with the support of Falklands war hero Simon Weston. The idea is that you store the word " I C E " in your mobile phone address book, and against it enter the number of the person you would want to be contacted "In Case of Emergency". In an emergency situation ambulance and hospital staff will then be able to quickly find out who your next of kin are and be able to contact them. It's so simple that everyone can do it. For more than one contact name ICE1, ICE2, ICE3 etc."

Amy Funder burk writes: For the person who was asking about info on Rathcroghan and the surrounding area near Tulsk in Roscommon, please give him this link for the Cruachan Ai Visitors' Centre. It's one of the best visitors' centres in Ireland, really bringing the earthworks to life. They highly recommend a visit there before exploring the sites. They give you a map after your tour of the Centre for you to go on your own. http://www.cruachanai.com/

Elizabeth wants to know the meaning of the word/name Kilwaughter; a quick search by us show it to be common in Antrim, - but no luck so far with the meaning.

Thomas Kennedy, who wrote last week that he was interested in finding fellow musicians to play Irish or other music together has asked us to provide his e-mail address to make it easier to contact him: Here's what he said:
Tom Kennedy, Doylestown, PA. accordionist (piano), guitarist, former member of Irish bands, seeks violinist, guitarist, bodhran, or other irish music players or singers in Bucks County or Phila. areas to jam together. Send him an email at
thomasjkennedy@yahoo.com or call 215 828-7464.

Shannon is looking for the name of a blessing which she first heard in a made for TV movie; called Crossfire Trails. all she can remember is "May the apple of your eye see only good." It was said by David O'Hara.

Last week, Karen asked about where she might find a plaque or poster of St. Patrick's Breasrplate. Kathleen B. found one here:
Thanks Kathleen!

Mary writes: I am in the midst of learning to play Irish songs on my fiddle and celtic harp, taking lessons on both. I would like to find proper tunes to practice, some that are currently featured in the Willie Clancy Festivals in Miltown Malbay, Ireland; would you happen to know how I might locate such tunes?

Tom Rankin asks where he might be able to purchase a medallion which features the classic Irish blessing "May the road rise to meet you.

Tracy writes: I'm hoping you can help me find an Irish home blessing scroll. The blessing is written on paper and contained in a glass tube that is mounted on the outside of the house by the door. My husband remembers having one on a home he had rented before we met and would like to find one for our new home. Our 1st anniversary is coming up and I would really love to surprise him.

Maura wants to know: about an old Irish structure "The Archway of Flaa", built in 1466.
ED. NOTE: The spelling is probably wrong; we tried variations, but couldn't find anything.

Last week we mentioned The red & Green of Mayo, a link sent in by Sue Haddad. We received the following from Mike: I was forwarded your newsletter (at my request) because my website got 297 hits on Monday and I think your newsletter contributed. My name is Mike Ward and I am the guy who created the Green and Red Of Mayo movie listed in your links section.Just thought I would say hi and thanks for posting the link. 297 is a daily record since I have been keeping the latest round of statistics.
ED NOTE: Mike also went on to say that he forwarded our newsletter to his mother who is from Achill. In case you missed it, have your speakers turned on and click here:

Links of the week
Irish Stone Quilts - a truly unique transformation of Ireland's magnificent stones into equally magnificent quilts crafted by Denise Labadie:

Vivian & Jack of the Irish Page sent us the following link. This time it's to a tune written by Carolan about Nelly Plunkett. http://www.irishpage.com/songs/carolan/plunkett.htm

September Golf Fling - and the Galway Oyster Festival, too!
This tour has everything we like - now how about you all donate two dollars each so Russ can play a few rounds on famous courses like Ballybunion and Bridget can indulge in one of her favorite foods?

A fun stress reliever from Hartson:

A reminder: The Breast Cancer site is having trouble getting enough people to click on it daily to meet their quota of donating at least one free mammogram a day to an underprivileged woman. It takes just a minute and there's no cost involved:

Last but certainly 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!

It only takes a second to feed hungry people, too:

Enough of the blitherin' - on with the update:
Quips, quotes, proverbs & toasts
A bit of the wit
Joke of The Week
Did You Know
Writer's Quiz
The Week That Was
The Week Ahead
Who being loved is poor? Oscar Wilde
Do not do unto others as you would that they should do unto you. Their tastes may not be the same. George Bernard Shaw
OUR FAVORITE JOKE OF THE WEEK - with thanks to Emmett C. McKowen
Sean and his wife, Aoife, had been debating buying a vehicle for weeks. He wanted a truck. She wanted a fast little sports-like car so she could zip through traffic around town. He would probably have settled on any beat up old truck, but everything she seemed to like was way out of their price range. "Look!" she said. "I want something that goes from 0 to 200 in just a few seconds. Nothing else will do. My birthday is coming up so surprise me!" Sean did just that. For her birthday, he bought her a brand new bathroom scale. Nobody has seen or heard from him since.
Help us keep your newsletter free. Please visit our good friends at Lollysmith:
We've recently combined all of our reader's contributions on to one page. The Perfect Pot of Tea, Pour the Perfect Pint, Growing Shamrocks, etc. We invite you to submit your own story relating to Ireland (humorous, factual or imaginative), reminiscence or fond memory. We are always looking for traditional poems, toasts, proverbs, blessings, or song lyrics. Family recipes and traditions are also appreciated. Thank you to all who have contributed to our page over the years!
In the meantime, we hope you are enjoying the Summer so far. We also hope you'll stop by and see what's new, including a smart new design of the Guinness Pint Glasses as well as two types of Irish Wildflower Seed direct from Dingle, Co. Kerry. Both great for the summer season. Please click:
1. According to old Irish folklore, it's a portent of death if a robin flies into the house?*
2. It's also a sign of someone passing if you have an itchy forehead?*
3. If a deceased person's clothes are given away, the recipient has to wear them to Mass on three consecutive Sundays? If he or she is ill and has to miss Mass, they have to send the clothes along in a bundle.
*Note: the first 2 superstitions were provided by the O'Neills who own a new company called Ashes to Ireland. We mentioned them in last week's newsletter and a reader asked how she might get in touch with them. Here's their URL if you are interested in their services:
To begin with, the answers to our last quiz:
1. Battle of the Boyne 1690: The Irish Campaign for the English Crown - Michael McNally
2. The Boyne and Aughrim: The War of the Two Kings - John Kinross
3. Sarsfield and the Jacobites - Kevin Haddick Flynn
Please clap your feet for this edition's Irish literary bibliophiles:

Liezl from So. Africa

Déirdre McKiernan Hetzler
"Glorious Ireland in May" - View this year's itinerary:

Helen Dowd
To read some family stories, please visit: Heavenly Sunshine Books. Thanks!

Ted Kranenberg

"Irish Royal"
My site is Mary's Irish Pride. Please sign the guestbook; I'd love to hear from lots of new friends!

Jeanne Bryan
Insider's Guide to Hidden Dublin - a wonderful website from Peter Scott who is a Dublin native. He gives excellent information for travelers to Ireland, especially Dublin. I have personally used much of the information on our travels to Ireland and found them very valuable
http:// www.dur.ac.uk/p.j.d.scott/dub

Hartson Dowd
Please vote for Helen! Go to:
and click on the yellow vote square. Thanks.

Giovanna Kranenberg

Patricia Edwards
I find this site very handy if I'm not sure if an e-mail received is a hoax:

Want to see your name in our next newsletter? Send us the names of the authors who wrote the following:
1. The Master
2. Only Say The Word
3. A History of Fastnet Lighthouse
ED. NOTE: Many books have the same title; keep in mind that we are looking for Irish authors or Irish-related books.
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 - preferably Irish. 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!)
NOTE: It would be very helpful if you would send your entries to: bhaggerty@irishcultureandcustoms.com
Firstly, the answer to last week's head banger:
Q. What is the only 15 letter word that can be spelled without repeating a letter?
A. uncopyrightable
Congrats to Christian Beck who was first in. And now Riddle People, here's your brain bruiser for this week:
Tom went to town with $50 , but returned at night with $150. He bought a hat at a clothing store and some apples at the market. Then he had his eyes tested. He gets paid every Thursday by check. The banks are only open on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays. The eye doctor is closed on Saturday. The market stays closed on Thursday and Friday. On what day did the man go to town?
Please help keep our newsletter coming to your mailbox every week - visit our good friends at the Irish Lottery:
It's one of the most trusted lotteries in the world and all you need are 6 numbers to hit the Irish Millions. Best of all, you don't have to live in Ireland to play, winnings are tax-free and checks are mailed within 48 hours. Do you have the luck of the Irish? Play the Irish lottery and find out! If you want to win it, you've got to be in it, so visit their totally revamped web site! Please click here for full details - and best of luck to you!
1. Article - Constance Georgina de MarkieviczSuffragette, Socialist, Soldier
2. Article - What the Twelfth means to me
3. Article - He came to mock but stayed to pray
4. Article - Watching the Weather on St. Swithin's Day
5. Basic Irish - Summertime
6. The Irish Kitchen - Irish Coffee Cheesecake
7. Letter of the Month - a new selection for June - scroll down to the bottom of the home page.
8. Circle of Prayer - We began a new cycle of Novenas on July 17. The first Novena will continue through July 25. For your convenience, we have posted the starting and end dates for all nine Novenas on the Circle of Prayer page. Please continue to pray or meditate on behalf of Karl, Bonnie and Donald, Laurie & Katie (and all those who suffer from lupus), Garry Crawford, Margaret LeDoux and her parents, Kristy and Steve, Pauline in England, Hartson, Graine, Molly, and so many others who need our spiritual support. We also hope you will remember our military personnel serving in Iraq, Afghanistan and all over the world. We ask that you especially think of a local young man, Matt Maupin, who was captured well over a year ago, Paul, Jason & Ashley, the sons of friends, and also the three grandsons of Mary Sigrist. We have personally experienced first-hand the power of prayer. God listens and He answers.
9. July Trivia Contest. Time's running out! All entries must be received by midnight, July 31, no matter ewhich time zone you live in. You can't win it if you're not in it! http://www.irishcultureandcustoms.com/TriviaContest.html
0. Irish Incense - We sold one through the newsletter last time. Let's see if we can sell a few more and make our newest advertiser VERY happy! Now you can recall the memory of "a turf fire in the cabin" - or the pub. Check it out:

With a new month looming, we'll be busy trying to make amends for a very hungry July when it came to new content. But, under the circumstances, we know you'll be patient with us. As always, we'll have a new blessing, quotation and maybe a new recipe. We'll also update the news and history every day. We'd really appreciate a quick visit on a daily basis; it will help our stats which have gone way down since summer began. Thanks!

So there you have it for another week. If you'll be celebrating a birthday, anniversary or other special event until we write again, we hope it's a joyous occasion.

Slan agus beannacht - and , as they say in Ireland, mind yourself.

Bridget & Russ
Get down on your knees and thank God you're still on your feet
To avoid duplication, we list only those events not already mentioned in the Irish Heritage Newsletter or on the Wild Geese website. In fact, the Irish Heritage email group and the Wild Geese have joined forces to bring you a massive listing of Irish events all over the world! To subscribe to the list, send your e-mail address to group moderator George Trainor, at george@thewildgeese.com. The group's postings go out every other Friday and Saturday, in five separate e-mails, covering Irish history, myths and legends, news, jokes, Irish (Gaeilge) lessons, recipes, and more. Organizations, please alert them about your upcoming events, e-mail events@thewildgeese.com, fax: 208-978-9998. Deadline: The third Wednesday of the month for the following month's edition. Also visit The Wild Geese at:

If you're in Ireland, or lucky enough to be visiting, you can see what's on offer here:

Cork City, Co. Cork - July 18-31
European Children's Theatre Encounter hosted by the National Association for
Youth Drama. This pan-European annual encounter is a massive gathering which brings together children in youth theatre aged 12-14 and drama facilitators from 15
European countries to devise and create an intercultural performance that
explores how the children see themselves today and what they see as their
future potential. The encounter has been running since 1982 and has not been
held in Ireland since 1991. For more details, please contact Christine Monk:

July/August 2005 - Dublin Ohio
Aisling: An Artist's Vision of Ireland. A solo show by Amy Funderburk. For more details, please click

HOUSTON - Sept 12 - St, Paddy's Irish Open
Cost is $125 per person and $500 per foursome, which includes lunch, dinner, and green fees. For information, call Sean Kearns at 832-978-4192 or Email Irishmkk@aol.com

Washington - September
IRISH LANGUAGE - Basic and Intermediate classes in the Irish language will start in September at 12600 NE 85th Street, Kirkland, Washington. For details, call Aidan Maher at 425-823-1553 or email thepaycock@juno.com.

Midlothian Texas, Oct 28-30
O' Flaherty Irish Music Workshop s - instruction on traditional Irish instruments such as Tin Whistle, Bodhran, Flute, Bouzouki, Guitar, Fiddle, Uilleann Pipes, Harp, Hammered Dulcimer, Concertina, and more, There are also classes on Gaelic Singing & Dancing. "Master classes in fiddle will be taught by Liz Carroll, drop-D guitar by John Doyle, Uilleann pipes by Jerry O'Sullivan and Irish Bouzouki by Roger Landes, four of the most accomplished Irish musicians living in America. For more details, please click
If you enjoy our newsletter and the website, please give us a hand and help keep them free. Imagine if 2700 people each sent us a dollar? Please send what you can to Bridget or Russ Haggerty, 5670 Meryton Place, Cincinnati OH 45224. Or you can send a donation via PayPal. The URL is:
and our email address is this one:
Many thanks in advance for your kindness.
LEAVE 'EM LAUGHING - this week's offering is from our friend in England, Patricia Edwards:

1) You got to find somebody who likes the same stuff. Like, if you like sports, she should like it that you like sports, and she should keep the chips and dip coming. Alan, age 10

2) No person really decides before they grow up who they're going to marry. God decides it all way before, and you get to find out later who you're stuck with. Kristen, age 10

1) Twenty-three is the best age because you know the person FOREVER by then. Camille, age 10

2) No age is good to get married at. You got to be a fool to get married. Freddie, age 6

1) You might have to guess, based on whether they seem to be yelling at the same kids.
Derrick, age 8

1) Both don't want any more kids. Lori, age 8

1) Dates are for having fun, and people should use them to get to know each other. Even boys have something to say if you listen long enough. Lynnette, age 8

2) On the first date, they just tell each other lies and that usually gets them interested enough to go for a second date. Martin , age 10

1) I'd run home and play dead. The next day I would call all the newspapers and make sure they wrote about me in all the dead columns. Craig, age 9

1. When they're rich. Pam, age 7
2) The law says you have to be eighteen, so I wouldn't want to mess with that. Curt, age 7
3 ) The rule goes like this: If you kiss someone, then you should marry them and have kids with them. It's the right thing to do. Howard, age 8

1 ) I don't know which is better, but I'll tell you one thing. I'm never going to have sex with my wife. I don't want to be all grossed out. Theodore, age 8
2 ) It's better for girls to be single but not for boys. Boys need someone to clean up after them. Anita, age 9

1 ) There sure would be a lot of kids to explain, wouldn't there? Kelvin, age 8

And the #1 Favorite is:

1 ) Tell your wife that she looks pretty, even if she looks like a truck. Ricky. age 10