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Displaying items by tag: Kerry

#Tourism - The world-class surfing hotspot of Sligo has failed to make the grade in Fáilte Ireland's long list of leading tourism towns for 2013, according to the Irish Independent.

The north-east county was among a surprise selection of areas known for their maritime and waterways attractions - such as Westmeath on the Shannon and Galway, host of last year's Volvo Ocean Race finale - that were not featured in the Irish tourism board's list of 45 towns and villages put forward for the Highly Commended Tourism Towns award, part of the National Tidy Towns Awards to be announced later in the year.

Counties on the water that did make the cut include Clare and Mayo, with five towns each on the list, Kerry with four - including last year's winner Portmagee - and Donegal and Waterford, represented three times each.

The top prize winner, to be announced by Fáilte Ireland in November, will receive €10,000 in supports for tourism marketing and development.

Though Sligo is conspicuous by its absence, Donegal's triple placing shows the north-east region is a big tourism attraction - and the Tripclocker blog says surfing is at the forefront of that.

With Ireland's exposure to the open Atlantic giving is "better waves more often", according to Killian O'Kelly of Bundoran's Turn n' Surf, there is a wide variety of surf beaches stretching from Donegal to Clare in particular with swells for all levels of experience.

Published in Aquatic Tourism

#News - IrishCentral reports that a surfing instructor has been cleared over the death of an American tourist on a beach in Co Kerry two years ago.

Rowan Minjon of Castlegregory had pleaded not guilty to the charge of dangerous driving over the death of Kentucky woman Jenna Hill, who was struck by a reversing truck on Inch Beach in Ardroe on the morning of 2 July 2011 and suffered severe head injuries.

The trial at Tralee Circuit Court heard that the truck driven by Minjon - employed by the Offshore Surf School at the time - had no working horn nor reverse lights.

But Garda vehicle inspector Jim O'Brien said Minjon had not been aware of Hill's presence on the beach, and claimed that she should have noticed the "big bright noisy and near" truck as it approached.

IrishCentral has more on the story HERE.

Published in News Update

After first hatching its harbour plan over five years ago, National Tourism Award winning village Portmagee in County Kerry now looks certain to see a new pontoon finally installed at Portmagee pier in 2013. It will be a further boost for a Kerry already popular with visiting yachts and boats.

The idea is to link the network of facilities that terminate in West Cork with new facilities in County Kerry and Portmagee will be an important link in this process.

The plans are that both local Skellig Rock tourism boat operators and up to 20 visiting yachts at any one time can use the new village pontoon once it is installed.

The facility is being developed through a local community initiative with funding from Kerry County Council and Failte Ireland.

Published in Irish Marinas

Boating facilities at the Dromquinna Manor resort in Kerry include pontoon berths offering the boating enthusiast a wonderful base to enjoy the south-west coast. The current facility comprises a long jetty in the Kenmare river.

Published in Irish Marinas

#Rescue - Emergency workers with Irish heritage from all over the world are being invited to celebrate Heroes Week in Tralee this June.

As part of The Gathering 2013 initiative, the chiefs of Co Kerry's emergency services will welcome first responders with Irish heritage - or an affinity for Ireland - for a week-long reunion among colleagues in Ireland.

That means any members of the police, fire service, coastguard, ambulance service, the Red Cross and the RNLI the world over!

Visitors will be declared 'guests of honour' in Tralee for the week, and among the various events planned between 12-17 June, they will have a chance to trace their Irish roots, and sightsee around one of Ireland's most picturesque spots.

And what's more, the not-for-profit event aims to raise funds for vital local rescue and lifesaving services.

As reported on Irish Central, Mayor of Kerry Terry O'Brien said: “We salute the men and women who go to work each day with only one purpose in mind – to protect and save lives. Many of them have Irish roots and we want to invite them home.

"Kerry has a strong tradition of volunteerism and a collective pride-of-place that will see us roll-out the red carpet to welcome our Heroes home to the Kingdom County. I hope you can join us and we assure you of a memorable visit with us and a warm Irish welcome.”

Full details of the event, including booking information, are available on the Heroes Week website HERE.

Published in Rescue

Valentia Harbour is on the south side of the entrance to Dingle Bay, in a sheltered area between the Valentia Island and the mainland. Knightstown is a fishing port and is the Island's only settlement. It provides visiting yachts with a sheltered anchorage and moorings. There is the outline of a marina (the floating breakwaters) there and they are sometimes used for berthing.

Published in Irish Marinas

#icra – A fleet of 40 boats with some high calibre entries are entered so far for the ICRA National Championships at Tralee Bay Sailing Club in June.

This year organisers says there is equal focus on IRC and ECHO handicaps in the National Championships with equal trophies prizes and recognition together with the ICRA Corinthian Cups for the Non-Spinnaker Divisions means that all Club sailors are catered for say organisers.

Division 2 is already shaping up to be a great fleet with the Corby 25 Tribal (ex Yanks and Franks), Liam Burke from Galway Bay entered and Dave Cullen's Half-Tonner King One from Howth Yacht Club. Nigel Biggs' Half-Tonner Checkmate XV from Dun Laoghaire's Royal St George is also in. There are also expected entries from skippers Frank Desmond, Peter Deasy and Mark Ivor's Cork Week winning Bad Company from the Royal Cork and Martin Reilly's Half-Tonner Harmony from Sligo Yacht Club.

Division 3 already has two hot quarter tonners Diarmuid Foley's Anchor Challenge from the Royal Cork and Lostys Illes Pitituses from Cobh Sailing Club as well as the defending champion Tiger (Neil Kenefick).

Division 1 is also building with likes of Raptor Denis Hewitt and partners and Joker 2 John Maybury both from the Royal Irish Yacht Club and Exhale Derry Good from Royal Cork Yacht Club leading the charge.

Division 0 sees ICRA Commodore Norbert Reilly's Crazy Horse Howth Yacht Club lining up against Anthony O' Leary's Royal Cork Antix who will be using the Dun Laoghaire to Dingle race as a feeder. Gloves Off skippered by Kieran Twomey and Conor Phelan's Jump will also be likely to travel from Royal Cork.

The ICRA Corinthian Cup will be sailed for non spinnaker classes at the same time and is expected to draw significant interest.

As before in Tralee, WIORA West Coast Championships is 'intertwined' with the ICRA's and starts a day earlier on 12th finishing on the 14 th as an extra bonus for all those who travel.

The facilities of Fenit Harbour including marina berths for the duration of the event together with inexpensive lift in and out are a bonus for ICRA.  TBSC promise a carnival atmosphere in the club and throughout the village with pubs and restaurants doing their bit to make sailors welcome.

Entry discount applies before 27th April 2013 so don't delay - get your entry in now at www.traleesailingclub.com

Published in ICRA

#FishKill - Accidental pollution from a farm in Co Kerry has resulted in a fish kill on a tributary of the Ballyline River.

Inland Fisheries Ireland were contacted by Kerry County Council on Saturday 16 March after being altered by a farmer to a slurry spill on his property in the Kilgarvan area of Ballylongford.

Upon arriving at the farm, IFI officers found one side of the slurry pit wall had collapsed, resulting in a large slurry spill. Two cattle were also injured in the incident and had to be put down. 

The slurry went into a watercourse that eventually flows into the Shannon Estuary at Ballylongford Bay.

The farmer had carried out emergency measures on site attempting to contain the slurry and also trying to minimise the impact to fish and wildlife downstream.

Fisheries officers carried out a visual inspection downstream but as the slurry was still passing there was strong discolouration and so it was impossible to see any dead fish. Samples were taken and sent for analysis immediately.

The situation was monitored over the weekend, and a full walkover of the stream was carried out as the water cleared on Tuesday 19 March.

IFI can confirm that a fish kill took place as a result of the pollution incident, and that 150 brown trout, hundreds of stickleback, one eel and one flounder were recovered. The section of river downstream from the farm to Gortanacooka Bridge was the most heavily impacted.

Currently there is a buildup of organic sediment in the river from the farm to the first bridge in Graffa Bog, which IFI says will not disperse until there is a flood in the river. 

The farm was also inspected on the evening of 19 March and the water within the watercourse was clear. The investigation continues.

Published in Inland Waterways

#Windsurfing - Mission 2 of the Red Bull Storm Chase to Galicia has been abandoned at the last minute due to an unstable weather forecast for the coast of northern Spain.

It's a big blow to the six waveriders who qualified for the second-stage of the global windsurfing challenge after three rounds of exciting competition in Brandon Bay less than two months ago.

The storm-force winds that swept the Kerry coast at the end of January provided the perfect conditions to test the mettle of the brave sailboarders who took to the water at the 'Dumps' ad 'Hell's Gate'.

Of the ten-strong field, six survived to advance to the second round - Marcilio Browne, Dany Bruch, Victor Fernandez, Robby Swift, Julien Taboulet and Thomas Traversa.

And Red Bull have posted a video compilation of highlights of all the action from Mission 1 in Kerry, which you can see below:

Published in Surfing

#MarineScience - An American university is teaming up with marine experts in Dingle to offer advanced marine biology classes.

As the Fairfield Sun reports, the biology department at Sacred Heart University in Connecticut is collaborating with scientists and staff at the Dingle Oceanworld Aquarium to offer the advanced classes to undergraduate and postgraduate students alike, beginning this May.

It's expected that the Coastal Study Centre programme will eventually provide both semester-long and short courses to take advantage of the aquarium's advanced research facilities, and will also accommodate students doing relevant thesis field work.

“Very few primarily undergraduate institutions have as strong a coastal focus as Sacred Heart does, which is only enhanced by our proximity to Long Island Sound,” said John Rapaglia, assistant professor of biology at Sacred Heart.

Dingle Harbour’s semi-rural to rural location creates a nice juxtaposition to the highly urbanised Long Island Sound.”

Sacred Heart already has an established campus in the Kerry Gaeltacht town where students can take classes on Irish and Celtic history and heritage among other subjects.

The Fairfield Sun has more on the story HERE.

Published in Marine Science
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