Memories of Ireland
A trip to Ireland for many of us has been a source of stories
that we have recounted over and over. The land, the people, and the trip
itself will often replay in our memories. Ireland always leaves us with
stories. It seems to be part and parcel of the journey. Sometimes, they
are long yarns. Other times, they are just short vignettes. Here are three
of the shorter type.
Do you have a story about Ireland? Short or long, if you have memories
that you would like to share, please send them along.
In August of 1998 my sister Margie Erickson, her husband Bill, my
wife Kay and myself, Tom Scanlon, went on holiday for two weeks to Ireland
for two reasons. First it was a 35th wedding anniversary gift to each other,
and secondly to celebrate with my second cousin on his wedding day in Co.
This was my first trip to Ireland in 46 years since leaving there
with my family in 1952, when we immigrated to New York.
This was a spiritual trip for me to Dowra Co. Cavan to visit the
same house in Moneen where my grandfather Tom, my father Ed and me were
While retracing some of my childhood memories we journeyed up to
Teebane Bog, where in years gone by, we won turf and brought it home in
kreels draped over the back of an ass. It was on this particular outing
that I found a two shilling piece dated 1948 on the bog road, and I thought
to myself, possibly it had fallen from my mother or father's pocket while
they were making turf, and had laid there for me to discover some 50 years
later. Now each time I see that coin I reflect on that spiritual visit
to the place where I was born and hope to visit soon again.
- Tom Scanlon, Reedsburg, WI
Recently, about 75 friends and family travelled to Ireland for the
wedding of good friends Kim Verbeck and Chad Koch, and hopefully I can
speak for all involved when I say it was a marvelous time. The wedding
took place on Wednesday, November 7th, but there were also events before
and after that all participated in. Tuesday night, there was a pub quiz
in the Dungeon Bar of the castle where the wedding took place, Kinnitty
Castle, in Kinnitty, Co. Offaly. Most everyone took part in it, and it
turned out to be a wonderful opportunity to meet those who you may not
have known previously.
Wednesday afternoon was the wedding, and it was absolutely gorgeous.
It was held in a long hall of the castle, with beautiful lighting, lovely
vows, and a terrific atmosphere all-around. The reception that followed
was also one for the ages, with a band playing Irish favorites, as well
as other numbers. There was also a DJ after the band, and to say that a
good time was had by all would be a gross understatement!
Thursday afternoon, thanks to local GAA organizer Percy Clendendan,
we were able to have a hurling match on a pitch located just down the road
from the castle. Despite the two snowstorms that passed through (!!), everyone
had fun, and it is great to say that we have all played hurling on Irish
soil. Thursday night was a sing-along at Percy's Pub, and that again was
a blast. I could go on and on about the fun and happiness surrounding the
event, as it was certainly an event of a lifetime! Hope everyone had as
much fun as I did!
- Matt Larsen, Milwaukee Hurling Club
Shock and sorrow spread throughout the world after the September
11 terrorist attacks on the United States. Ireland was no exception. Cousin
Kathy Burke described the reaction in the small town of Gort in a letter
written September 14th. Gort is located mid-way between Ennis and Galway
City: "Today is a national day of mourning in Ireland, as is the case
in Europe and elsewhere, and masses, ecumenical services and other services
are being held throughout the country. Here in Gort (at St. Colman's) there
was mass at twelve noon, the church was filled to overflowing and the organist
played the American National Anthem during the ceremony."
- William Burke, Elm Grove, WI
Milwaukee President's Message
This is the time of year when the name of this publication is very
appropriate. Reflections. It is a time to reflect on the previous year,
all of the good and all of the bad. We must do this in order to appreciate
all that we have, including the love of our family, friends and community.
It is the time to remember never to take them for granted. A smile, a hug
or a simple phone call could make a huge difference in someone's life,
especially your own.
We had another very successful Folk Fair this year. Many thanks again
to everyone who volunteered, including the many members of the Currach
Club who worked in the Food Booth.
Please remember to send in your nominations for our 2002 Irish Rose,
Irishman of the Year and Parade Marshal.
Athbhliain faoi mhaise duit!
The South Central Shamrock Club met on Sunday, November 18 at Longley's
in Reedsburg, with about 25 members in attendance.
John Delmore reported on the State Advisory Meeting held in Madison.
He stated there would be four State Advisory Meetings per year. Each club
was to have two representatives. John Delmore would be one with LaDonna
Devine and Mary Stieve being alternates for the second representative.
John also presented the State Advisory Committee By-Laws, which were discussed,
voted on and accepted.
There was much discussion on whether to hold our annual raffle. It
was decided and voted on not to do one this year.
Our Christmas Party was to be held on December 16, at the Reedsburg
LaDonna Devine gave a very interesting talk on her business, which
is located in Baraboo, known as the An Siopa Eire or "The Ireland
Shop". She noted she would be having a Finnians Event 2001 on December
3, which would be held at her shop from 4 to 8 p.m.
All were reminded that Harmony Tours is sponsoring a trip to the
Fireside on February 1, featuring "A Little Bit O'Ireland."
- Mary E. Stieve, Reporter
• JANUARY. 15 - 6:00 p.m. Chili Mix; 7:00 p.m. Membership Meeting
• FEBRUARY 19 - 7:00 p.m. Membership Meeting
• MARCH 17 - St. Patrick's Day Parade in downtown Beloit.
Thanks to Ray and Mary Weigand for the very interesting program about
their well planned, self guided tour of Ireland and their exhibit of fine
Irish products. It was like a "show and tell" program.
In January bring some of your favorite chile to be mixed with all
of the other favorite chiles for our dinner. After the dinner, Helen Close
will tell us about her recent trip to Ireland.
At our February meeting we are going to fashion our program after
the great Antique Road Show (no appraisals and no sales). This should be
a lot of fun and we want everyone to participate. Each person bring one
antique and tell us all about it. Is it a family heirloom? If not, where
did you acquire it? If it is old, it must have some kind of story. If you
don't have something in mind right away then rummage through your house
and find some old forgotten treasure, dust it off and bring it along to
the Shamrock Club Antique Road Show and tell us all about it. We have about
six weeks to get ready for this program so let's all get involved in this
program and have a lot of fun.
Hope to see all of our members in our St. Patrick's Day Parade or
watching from the curbside.
A New Year's greeting to all our members. What's your resolution
for the year 2002? Our resolution is to bring new life and Irish spirit
to our Club. First, we have streamlined the membership dues. All dues are
now payable in December which enables us to have available funds for planning
Our club met twice last year with the Shamrock Club State Advisory
personnel about other clubs and their yearly functions. We had our successful
fun/fund in October and plan another in February. Our Christmas party had
music galore with the Keltori Irish Band and the melodic voice of David
Baltes as he warmed "the cockles of our hearts" with Christmas
and Irish songs. Did you pay your dues in December? Remember for better
bookkeeping and a more accurate membership list this was a necessary move.
Please help the club in this matter.
This month our own Dane County newsletter has major supporters. Businesses
and other contributors are placing ads in the newsletter.
Our Board meeting in January has on its agenda the tour of Ireland
this spring. We will have a choice of two tours - one by Paul Terry; the
other by the Landa Cleary Travel Co., Inc. Tour information was available
at the Christmas party.
Plan to join us on Sunday, March 17, at the Capitol in Madison as
local dignitaries help us raise the Irish flag and wish us well. A parade
around the square and the finale at Jingles for corn beef and cabbage complete
the day. At the dinner the Irish Person of the Year is honored.
Have a Happy New Year and remember the Irish blessing:
May good luck be with you
Wherever you go,
And your blessings outnumber
The Shamrocks that grow.
- Co-presidents: Paul Buckalew and Colleen Schams
Shamrock Club of
From left: Leprechaun Maddie Cremer, Float Designer Bob Warpinski,
Float Chairperson Margaret Quam, and Leprechaun Mitchell Cremer, standing
in front of the award winning float (Director's Award for Most Beautiful
Float) in Green Bay's Holiday Parade on November 17, 2001. This is the
second time in three years that the Shamrock Club of Green Bay and Northeast
Wisconsin has won the Director's Award for Most Beautiful Float. (photo
by Joan Kreuser)
Shamrock Club Volunteer Party
The Shamrock Club Volunteer Party will take Friday, January 12, at
the ICHC, 7 p.m. The party is for all those who have volunteered their
time over the past year for the Shamrock Club. There will be food, drink
and entertainment. For information contact Cate Harris, (414) 321-5153.
There are new developments for the Shamrock Club's annual St Patrick's
Day Parade. The tentative date is March 9, 2002. At the time of publication,
not all of the details have been worked out. Check the February issue of
the Reflections for more information.
Irish Display at Museum In March
Mark your calendars for March 3, 2002 our annual St. Patrick's Day
appearance at the Milwaukee Public Museum. There will be lace makers, peat
postcard displays, dancers, and more. For more information, call (262)
Sunday Afternoon at the Fireside
Spend a delightful Sunday afternoon - February 10, 2002 at the Fireside.
The group, limit 45, will leave the ICHC at 12:30 p.m. and come back about
8 p.m. The cost is $57. Checks payable to the Shamrock Club. Reserve early
(last time many were disappointed) by Feb. 1, 2002. Please send reservations
to Cate Harris, 8835 W. Verona Ct., Milwaukee, WI 53227.
Nothing warms the heart as much as a beautiful Irish song.
And the thrilling rhythms of Irish step-dancing set your pulse to
quicken and your heart to pounding.
And you just can't help grinning when you hear a good ol' Irish story.
Where can you find all this and more in a dazzling, all new, musical
spectacular with beautiful costumes, enchanting singing, hilarious story-telling,
and breath-taking Irish dancing featuring champion dancers in the style
of shows like Riverdance and Lord of the Dance?
Why at The Fireside Theatre, of course, in their upcoming production
of A Little Bit O'Ireland.
You'll enjoy the many different styles of Irish singing, dancing
and storytelling in this fast-paced tribute to the enchanted Emerald Isle.
You'll be presented a complete array of Irish music and dance from the
haunting sound of the ancient Celtic tribes to the passionate songs of
the Irish countryside to the joyous ditties of the Irish American Immigrants.
And of course your Irish experience is not confined to the theatre.
The featured meal for A Little Bit O'Ireland beings with Irish Onion and
Braised Oxtail Soup. For the entree, Chicken Waterford - a skinless breast
of chicken, lightly breaded, sauteed and crowned with corn beef, caramelized
leeks and Muenster cheese over a Marsala wine sauce. We serve it up with
whipped Colcannon potatoes with strips of cabbage, creamed spinach inside
a plum tomato with bacon, and emerald green snap peas. Dessert is an Irish
Delight - Dublin Bread Pudding Souffle - surrounded with our special Leprechaun
Family Fun Night
The Milwaukee Ulster Project Family Fun Night will be on Friday March
1, 2002 from 5 to 11 p.m. at Mount Mary College on 92nd and Locust in Milwaukee.
The evening will start at 5 p.m. with a traditional fish fry, fish and
chips also available. Musical entertainment will be provided by the multi-talented
Leahy's Luck. And dancing, yes we will have dancing, will include all three
of Milwaukee's Irish Dance Schools, Cashel-Dennehy, Trinity and Glencastle.
With the brilliant performances of all three schools over Thanksgiving
at the Mid-West Championships, and knowing the schools will be sending
dancers to the All Irelands in February, the Fun Night will give people
from Milwaukee another opportunity to see the best Irish dancers in the
Don't miss it: March first, 5 to 11, Mt. Mary College, Leahy's Luck,
Trinity, Cashel-Dennehy, Glencastle and fish and chips.
Nominations For Irish Honorees
Nominations for Milwaukee's Irish Rose, Irishman of the Year and
Parade Marshal(s) must be sent to the Shamrock Club prior to the 6 p.m.
start of the board meeting on January 31, 2002. Nominations must be written.
Nominees must be members in good standing. Nominations can be mailed to
2133 West Wisconsin, Ave, Milwaukee, WI 53233, dropped off at the ICHC,
or faxed to (414) 345-8805.
First Friday Lecture Series Continues
A delightful lecture sponsored by Celtic Women International will
be offered January 4th. Ian Day will present a talk about Robert Burns.
Mr. Day is past president of the Robert Burns Club and also past president
of the St. Andrews Society. Put on your tartans and enjoy a wee Scottish
evening with the Celtic Women.
All CWI lectures run from 5:30 to 7 p.m., with a cup 'o tea and biscuits
for all. Admission is $5 per person. Everyone is welcome, members, non-members,
men and women. Enjoy a great gentle early evening with the Celtic Women
- Jean K. Bills, President
Celtic Women International
Nominations For Milw. Club Offices
Nominations for all offices of the Shamrock Club's Milwaukee Chapter
will be taken at the March and April meetings. Nominees must be members
in good standing, with dues paid and current. Nominees must be present
at the time of their nomination.
Would you like to know some Irish slang? There is a website that
is dedicated to collecting and sharing these words and phrases. Jerry Coughlan
is the author and webmaster of "Everyday English and Slang in Ireland."
It lists well known and not so well known phrases. The site is at:
So, come along and see how well educated you are in the Irish language.
Here's a small sampling:
• Afters (n): dessert
• Ages (n): long time
• Alans or Alan Wickers (n): nickers; as in keep your alans
on; calm down.
• Amadáin (Omadhan) (n): idiot
• Any Use? (n) any good? as in "Was the film any use?"
• Apache (n): joyrider
• Ape (n): fool
• Ara be whist (v): shut up.
• Arseways (a): "I did it all arseways" = I made
a complete mess of it!
• Article (n): a woman, usually half in jest
• Artist, government (n): person "drawing" the dole
Bradley Center Fund Raiser
Continues To Seek Volunteers
For the past 13 years the Milwaukee Shamrock Club has earned more
than $83,000. This money has enabled the club to be a lot more visible
and able to contribute to such events as the Culture Areas at Irish Fest
and Holiday Folk Fair, St. Patrick's Church restoration and many other
things. The Bradley Center offers us an opportunity to be a part of community
service and at the same time let the public know who we are.
We can still use volunteers for the Bradley Center. The work is varied.
The duties of the volunteers at an event include:
Booth Setup; Sales during events; Final counts; and Cleanup.
Each event needs 18 people. Six are at the counter to take care of
the customers. Two people in the kitchen keep the brats cooking, wrap them
and put them into the warming ovens. Two people are needed for the nacho
preparation and to place them in the warm ovens. Three people pour beer
and three work on soda. One person works the popcorn machine and the one
person is in charge of cash. Cash person comes early and stays until the
Bradley Center bank people come to pick it up. The stand manager comes
early and stays late and tries to keep everything running smoothly. When
you report into the booth you are generally given your choice of job.
Volunteers are assigned to teams and when possible so are car pools.
We only get a limited number of parking passes. You will be sent a list
of your team members and times and dates of your events. We usually are
given about 20 events and if we can get three or more teams, each would
work only six or less events. We need "on call alternates" who
would be able to come in with a few days notice or maybe even hours notice
in an emergency. This doesn't happen very often.
If you can offer some time, and maybe find a person who would like
to do a buddy system on the job, we can use your help. Even volunteering
for one event a year helps us out.
- Cate Harris (414) 321-5153
and Katy Voss (414) 352-6479
Irish News Items from RTE
ATMS TO SHUT ON NEW
YEAR'S DAY - EURO CHANGEOVER
All ATM machines will be closed between 1:30 a.m. and 6 a.m. on New
Year's Day to facilitate the changeover to the Euro by Irish banks. At
a briefing on its plans for the euro changeover recently, the Bank of Ireland
advised customers to withdraw enough cash in advance to see them through
the New Year's Eve and early into New Year's Day.
The Bank's head of euro planning, Michael Watson, also advised customers
to use Laser cards in the initial weeks of the euro to help them avoid
confusion and delay. Bank of Ireland hopes to have nearly all its ATM machines,
over 450, issuing euro notes by 5 p.m. on New Year's Day.
CALL TO EXTEND MEDICAL CARD
TO LOW INCOME EARNERS
Extending the medical card to 200,000 low-income earners would cost
£80m, and the Government could afford to implement it now - that
is according to the Society of St Vincent de Paul. They have repeated their
call to the Government to extend the medical card to low income earners
in the upcoming budget.
The Government said that it intends to freeze the extension of the
medical card until 2003 in favor of other health spending projects.
The Taoiseach has told the Dáil that medical card eligibility
limits had been improved in the past four budgets.
He said that there had been no improvements in the previous three
budgets, a reference to the Rainbow Government's time in power when Michael
Noonan was Minister for Health.
EUROPE BACKS DRASTIC
FISH QUOTA CUTS
The European Commission is calling for drastic cuts in fish quotas,
including up to a 60% reduction in whitefish catches by Irish boats. The
EU Fisheries Commissioner, Franz Fischler, said the scientific evidence
showed that fish stocks were at an alarmingly low rate. On RTÉ Radio,
he said there was a choice of making heavy cuts now for a period to protect
fish, or have no future for fishermen.
MYSTERY GOLD ARTIFACT
TO BE EXAMINED IN CORK
The Curator of the National Museum, Mary Cahill, is due in Cork to
examine a piece of gold jewellery that is believed to be 3,200 years old.
The Irish Examiner reports that the artifact, a ribboned torc, was found
by an unnamed man who sought to have it valued by a jeweller. It is thought
the torc may have been used as a child's necklace or worn around an adult's
upper arm. The location of the find is being kept secret, as archaeologists
want to examine the site.
Dominates Ceili Teams at
The Cashel-Dennehy School of Irish Dance dominated ceili teams (eight
dancers per team) at the MidAmerica Championships of Irish Dance (Oireachtas)
in Rosemont, Illinois over Thanksgiving weekend. Competitors came from
over ten states from the Midwest.
Cashel-Dennehy sent 13 ceili teams to compete at the Midwest regional
championships. Twelve of the 13 teams received awards in their competitions,
and five of the teams came home to Milwaukee as 1st place champion teams!
Cashel-Dennehy plans to send a number of their qualifying Regional
Champion teams to the upcoming World Championships, which will be held
in Glasgow, Scotland in April 2002.
Cashel-Dennehy school's teachers are Kathy Dennehy of Chicago and
Kate Walrath of Milwaukee.
MILWAUKEE - Katie and John Brozovich (referred by Jim and Mike, Shamrock
Club Pipe and Drum Corp).
NOTICE: To all Membership Chairpersons of all the chapters. If you
need membership cards, please let me know and I will see you receive them.
Membership Report Milwaukee Chapter:
• October: 44 memberships up for renewal, 30 paid, 14 dropped for
nonpayment of dues.
• November: 41 memberships up for renewal, 20 paid, 21 due.
• December: 19 memberships up for renewal, 2 paid, 17 due.
Shamrock Club Board of Directors
Yearly Calendar of
•FEBRUARY: Announce Irish Rose / Irishman / Parade Marshal; Easter
•MARCH: Nominations; St. Patrick's Day activities; Easter Rising
•JUNE: Appoint two members to audit committee
•JULY: New board takes office
•AUGUST: Irish Fest Sales Booth
•OCTOBER: Audit Committee Report
•NOVEMBER: Holiday Folk Fair, Cultural, Food, Sales Booths
•DECEMBER: Announce deadline for honors nominations
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
•JANUARY: Vote for Irish Rose / Irishman / Parade Marshal
•FEBRUARY: Calendar-year report of treasurer Appoint finance committee
•MAY: Year-end report of president; Budget proposal to board by finance
committee; Appoint by laws committee; Old and new boards meet jointly
•JUNE: Membership directory print-out to president; old and new boards
•AUGUST: Fiscal year treasurer's report to board
•SEPTEMBER: Audit committee report to board
•DECEMBER: Membership directory print-out to president