Site hosted by Build your free website today!

Emerald Reflections Online

Table of Contents - April 2003

You are viewing the electronic version of Emerald Reflections,
the monthly publication of the Shamrock Club of Wisconsin

April Oddities From the Irish News

Shamrock Club of Lafayette County

Shamrock Club of Rock County

Shamrock Club of New Dublin

Dane County Shamrock Club

Shamrock Club of South Central Wisconsin

Shamrock Club of South Central Wisconsin Honors Fish and Dargal

Milwaukee President's Message

Easter Rising Mass

Hallamor Concert Series Finale: bohola

Irish Immigrant Service Benefit

First Friday Lectures: Celtic Women International

Eucharistic Ministers Needed

St. Patrick's Help Fund

Welcome New Members

Milwaukee Calendar of Events

Wisconsin Calendar of Events

April Oddities From the Irish News

April is here, again. And although there are no fictional April Fools stories this month, we figured that it would be a good time to roll out some more unusual and quirky news stories from the past few months from Ireland.

BHS boss Philip Green has apologised
for suggesting the Irish are illiterate.

The suggestion was made by Mr Green during a Guardian newspaper investigation into his accounts. His apology came in a bid to prevent a customer boycott of his stores. The accusation, part of a string of expletive-laden outbursts, came in an attack on the Guardian's financial editor, Paul Murphy. Mr Green said: "He can't read English. Mind you, he is a ****** Irishman." Mr Green referred to nationality several times while attempting to prevent the Guardian writing about his accounts. However, he now insists he hadn't meant to offend: "It was said in the heat of the moment. It was not a general comment." He added: "Some of my best friends are Irish-Michael Smurfit, Dermot Desmond, JP McManus." They are all among Ireland's wealthiest business elite. Mr Green was forced to apologise when he was contacted by Irish newspapers and by the Irish Centre, a London-based community and cultural organisation. John Twomey, a spokesman for the centre, said: "This is a truly deplorable piece of racism that is breathtaking in its arrogance." The Monaco-based multi-millionaire is among the UK's most powerful retailers. His empire, which is privately owned, spans Bhs, Top Shop, Top Man, Burton, Wallis and Miss Selfridge. He controls 2,500 stores and 13% of the high street clothing business, the same proportion as Marks & Spencer.

The Guardian investigation centred on the Bhs business, which is the cornerstone of his empire. The entrepreneur has a substantial number of stores in Ireland, and the Irish Centre called for a boycott of all stores in the Bhs group until Mr Green made a full apology. Murphy was, in fact, born in Oldham and raised in Portsmouth.

Police search for hospital trio
after theft and car crash

Police in Dublin are looking for three people who discharged themselves from hospital after crashing a stolen car on their way home from court. Two teenagers and a 27-year-old man left Beaumont hospital earlier that day after being treated for injuries sustained in the high-speed crash. The three, from Dublin, had been bailed on burglary charges during a court appearance in County Louth on Tuesday, but then stole a Nissan Micra car to get back to Dublin. They're alleged to have burgled another house on the way back. Police were alerted and gave chase before the car, driven by a 16-year-old, crashed at a roundabout north of the city. One of the passengers had to be cut from the wreckage. Another escaped but was recaptured before all three were admitted to hospital with minor injuries - only to discharge themselves. RTE reports police say they know all three suspects, and are following a definite line of inquiry.

Partially sighted Irish skier
nearly froze to death

An Irishman with poor eyesight almost froze to death after he was forgotten about by the rest of his ski-group and could not see the way home. The 29-year-old from Dublin, who also has bad hearing, was on a luxury skiing holiday in Kitzbuehel in Tyrol but his vacation ended in hospital after he was left sitting in freezing temperatures for ten hours. The man had signed up for lessons at a ski school in the Alpine area of Jochberg and was being taken up the mountainside on a chairlift when one of his skis fell off.

Reaching the peak, the ski instructor left the partially sighted man with two other members of the group before going to find the lost ski. But, when the instructor failed to return, the two skiers caring for the man decided to join the search for the ski. According to the Innsbruck police, none of the group returned up the mountainside to help the stranded man, and instead had gone back to their hotels to get out of the cold and enjoy their evening meal.

The forgotten man was left wandering the slopes unable to make his own way down or to ask for help because of his hearing difficulties. Rescue teams were alerted at 11:30 p.m. after hotel staff noticed he had still not come back. A 41-man rescue team from Austria and Bavaria in Germany were able to locate the half-frozen man 1,470 metres up the Brunnalm Mountain. He was taken to the Kitzbuehel Hospital where doctors said he was lucky to still be alive. Current temperatures on Austria's mountains at night plunge to as low as minus 20 degrees centigrade.

Lafayette County

The Shamrock Club of Lafayette County attended their annual St. Patrick's Day 10:30 a.m. Mass at Holy Rosary Catholic Church in Darlington on Sunday, March 16th. A bagpiper from Mineral Point led the processional and recessional music. Afterwards members enjoyed a St. Patrick's Day brunch at Ranch House Lanes at 1 p.m.

Monday, March 17th, the annual St. Patrick's Day parade was held, starting at 5 p.m. It proceeded to the County Courthouse where Irish songs were sung and the annual drawing from tickets sold was held. The "Irish Man and Rose" were honored. Then all gathered for corned beef and cabbage at a local establishment where a good time was had by all.

- Sara Lange Flanagan

Rock County


APRIL 15: Membership Meeting 7 p.m.,
preceded by Potluck Super, 6 p.m.

MAY 20: Membership Meeting 7 p.m.

Our March meeting was cancelled because of the many activities taking place during this month. Therefore we will have the "No Bake, Bake Sale" at our April meeting. With this type of bake sale there is no work involved, just donate, to our club, what you would have spent on baking materials and what you would have spent to purchase some baked items.

There will be a Potluck Supper at 6 p.m. and Rosie Hughes will show a video on Ireland. Also, at this meeting we will have nomination and election of officers. Come to this meeting and help elect the new officers for the coming year.

- Tom Kennedy

Shamrock Club of New Dublin

With a successful week of activities centered around St. Patrick's Day behind them, the Shamrock Club of New Dublin is looking ahead to future activities. The club will be exploring how to celebrate in September when St. Patrick's Day will be half way here. There will be further efforts in finding an Irish Sister City for New London. Nominations of officers will take place soon. And, of course work has begun on next year's St. Patrick's Day week long celebration.

The Shamrock Club of New Dublin meets the first Monday of the month at the Midtown Restaurant in downtown New London. See the club's website at ""

- Patrick Nehring

Dane County Shamrock Club, Inc.


APRIL 8: Board of Directors Meeting 6:15 p.m.
Coliseum Bar and Restaurant

MAY 13: Board meeting, 6:15 p.m.; General Meeting; 7:30 p.m.; nomination and election of board members; guest speaker

JUNE 10: Transitional meeting for incoming Board; 6:15 p.m.

JULY 8: Annual Summer picnic to introduce new officers; KC's Clubhouse on Verona Rd. Come and greet the new board members; 5:30 p.m.

The April newsletter for the Dane County Shamrock Club will be under the new direction of Pat McCarthy and Sue Morrison. The co-presidents and other board members will help with the transition and also submit articles. Any other members wishing to contribute should contact Pat or Sue.

The Shamrock Club of Dane County, Inc. named Margaret Rupert the Irish Person of the Year. Margaret was pictured in the March issue of Emerald Reflections in her Leprechaun costume. Margaret was presented as the Dane County Shamrock Club's Irish Person of the Year at the annual Saint Patrick's Day Ceremony at the Capitol, on Sunday, March 16, 2003. Her family unfurled the Irish flag. The festivities began at noon.

Margaret is the mother of three children - Christopher, Stephen and Heather Patton. Her family also includes "Queen Elizabeth", a tortoise shell cat.

Margaret's great-great-great grandfather, Philip Riley, came to America from County Longford in 1840 and was one of the first settlers in southeastern Wisconsin. Another great-great-great grandfather, Thomas Manson, came from Belfast in the 1840s. She also has ties with the Barry and O'Connell clans.

For the last twenty-three and a half years, Margaret has been employed by the USPS. She has served as Steward of the Madison Area Local APUW for twelve years, as Secretary of the Union for eight years and as President for four years.

Margaret is a member of Saint Albert the Great Parish in Sun Prairie. There, she serves with the "Kitchen Witches", works at the festival in children's games and sells roses at the Mother's Day Services to support Right-to-Life. She volunteers at Luke House serving those in need of food and/or shelter, is a Red Cross blood donor, was scout master for her two sons and also worked with the girl scouts when her daughter was younger.

As well as being "official" Leprechaun of the Dane County Shamrock Club, Margaret has been, for the past year, Membership Chair. She helped set up the web site for the Dane County Shamrock Club and decorated the tables for the Christmas party. She is also a member of the Saint Patrick's Day Parade Committee.

Of course, Margaret enjoys Irish Music and the Milwaukee Irish Fest which she has attended for the past twelve years. The last two years in her leprechaun attire, with her sister, Sue Morrison, she has marched in the parade and handed out candy to the fest goers. She graciously poses with the adults and children who want to be photographed with a "real leprechaun". She and Sue also offered their vans to transport Club members and friends to the Fest in 2002.

Margaret and her late husband celebrated their tenth anniversary in Ireland, a memorable trip. She plans to return in 2004 to introduce her sister, Mary, to the ancestral homeland.

Margaret wishes you the following:

    I asked a leprecharun to bring,
    a pot of gold to you

    I asked a fiddler if he'd play,
    your favorite ditty too,

    I asked the saints to walk with you,
    each step along the way,

    And now I'm asking you to have,
    a very happy day!

- Co-Presidents: Paul Buckalew and Colleen Schams

South Central Shamrock Club

Sunday, February 9, 2003, the South Central Shamrock Club gathered at the Voyageur Inn in Reedsburg.

President Jack Gavin called the meeting to order, with 30 members present. Final plans were made for our St. Patrick's Party at the Wintergreen in Lake Delton on March 8, with social hour at 5:30 p.m., followed by dinner at 6:30 p.m., with entertainment to follow.

The Irish Rose 2003 is Ellen Dargel, from Baraboo, and Irishman is Joe Fish of Reedsburg, both being very deserving of the honor.

Lorraine Cummings was the winner of the door prize, a beautiful candlestick and candle from the Irish Shop in Baraboo.

Following the meeting, Our Fathers Dream Trip to Ireland was presented by Dana Horkan, Atty Derek and Lynn Horkan. They gave a very interesting talk about their trip in April of 2002. They shared their photo albums and also some recipes they obtained in Ireland.

After their presentation all present enjoyed a dinner at the Voyageur Inn.

- Mary E. Stieve, Reporter

Shamrock Club of
South Central Wisconsin
Honors Fish, Dargel


The Shamrock Club of South Central Wisconsin honored Joe Fish as Irish Man of the Year and Ellen Sheahan Dargel as Irish Rose at its annual St. Patrick's Day celebration at Wintergreen on March 8, 2003.


Prominent in Joe's lineage are the Horkans, his great-great-grandparents emigrating from County Mayo in 1840. Peter and Bridget bought 160 acres in Dellona in 1848. Their son, James Horkan, married Mary Gallaher, who had survived a shipwreck coming from Ireland in 1853 before arriving in Dellona. Joe's grandparents, George Patrick Horkan and Catherine Loughlin (LaValle), were married in 1867 in Lyndon Station (because there was no church yet in Dellona) and settled in Winfield. Their daughter, Catherine Ann Horkan, married Clifford Blakeslee Fish, descendent of Silas Fish II, who came from New York to Winfield in 1855.

Joseph Walter Fish, one of Clifford and Catherine's 10 children, was born on July 13, 1948, in Reedsburg. After graduation from Webb High School in 1966, Joe was employed by Hankscraft for 10 years in the Chicago and Milwaukee area.


On Aug. 1, 1970, Joe married Mary Fry. Family members recall the event at Lime Ridge and still chuckle about the sign-board announcement: Wedding today: Fish/Fry. Joe and Mary are the parents of three daughters: Rebecca and Tom Vertein, Reedsburg; Jennifer Fish, Reedsburg; and Heather Jo Fish, Middleton. Joe and Mary have two grandchildren, Alexsis and Cole.

In 1976 Joe and Mary bought and operated the Coach House in Rock Springs for a few years. Then Joe managed the Viking Bowl before resuming his career with Hankscraft in 1984. Since then he has been in the motor division, proving his exceptional ability in motor mechanics and the POP industry (point of purchase).


Fellow employees regard him as the "go-to-guy" who is always willing to help, doing whatever needs to be done to accomplish the goals of the company. When Gerber sold Hankscraft in 1996 Joe was instrumental in keeping Hankscraft in the Reedsburg area. Joe became part owner and assumed the title of vice president/sales as well as heading up new product development. He has contributed professionally through POPAI (point of purchase advertising international) in judging, marketing and trade products programs. A strong believer in giving back to the community, Joe is a key player in Hankscraft fund-raisers to support Relay for Life, as well as providing two Fish Teams for the event. Hankscraft's hosting of annual outings to benefit children and young adults in the area through the Ronald McDonald House and Markos Foundation realize annual contributions of approximately $10,000, largely due to Joe's participation.

A member of Sacred Heart Church in Reedsburg, Joe is an organizer of the Sacred Heart Family Softball Tournament and is active with the Knights of Columbus.

Joe has long been active with the athletic and wrestling clubs, has helped organize the Rock Springs Ball Park and the Melvin Muchow Memorial Tournament. He serves on the Excelsior Town Board, the RAMC Foundation Board and the United Way Radio Auction.


A "master of the good time," Joe successfully incorporates gathering-and-giving to bring the joy to the fund-raisers and the recipients. His generosity is legendary. Joe believes that sharing your gifts reaps its reward with wonderful family, good friends and the satisfaction of knowing that you have given something back to a community that has given so much to you.

Joe Fish is a well-known personality - with his infectious laugh, ability to entertain, story-telling, compassion and kindness and true generosity. There is a true-life testimonial relayed by Tom Resch, who in 1991 was manning the fire tower in Wyoming at an elevation of 9,993 feet. A tourist who came to observe the mountainous view was wearing a Reedsburg Middle School t-shirt. Tom was surprised to see the Reedsburg logo and asked if he knew Joe Fish. The fellow said, "My gosh, here I am standing on top of a mountain with nobody else in sight, and you ask about Joe Fish. Everybody knows Joe Fish. Of course I know him!"


Ellen was born on Feb. 13, 1948, to Frank (Francis) and Julia Sheahan of Cazenovia. Frank's parents were Loretta Drea Sheahan and John Sheahan. Loretta's father was James Drea, an 1850s immigrant from Ireland who first settled in Ohio. He fought for the Union and died in 1882 as a result of wounds received at the first Battle of Bull Run. After being widowed, Loretta's mother, Mary Johnson Drea, moved to Richland County with three of her children, Loretta being the youngest.

John Sheahan was the son of Maurice Sheahan who came to the United States from Ireland in the 1870s. Maurice Sheahan, a cooper in Chicago before homesteading in Richland County, was called "the jig dancer" because of his skill dancing the old jigs of Ireland. Maurice married Ellen Ford, whose parents, William Ford and Elizabeth Keating Ford, migrated to America from County Cork in Ireland.

Ellen grew up on a farm near Cazenovia and attended a one-room country school for six years. She then transferred to St. Anthony's Catholic School for two years and graduated with honors from Weston High School in 1966. Ellen moved to Madison where she worked for the Wisconsin Department of Revenue in its Corporate Tax Division.

On June 13, 1970, Ellen married Jerry Dargel. This marriage was blessed with two children, Ryan and Carmen. Ellen was very involved with the school activities of both Ryan and Carmen, which included many hours sitting on bleachers cheering for Ryan as he took part in Baraboo High School wrestling events and very supportive of the many activities that Carmen participated in throughout high school. Both Ryan and Carmen graduated from Baraboo High School. Ryan served in the Marines and was a student at University of Wisconsin-Platteville when he died suddenly of a severe asthma attack. Carmen went on to graduate from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and is currently in her last year of rotations at the Wisconsin School of Medicine in Milwaukee. Carmen is married to Jay Roltgen of Baraboo.


Ellen has always been active in church activities. She is past president of the Parish Council of St. Barnabas in Mazomanie, where she also taught religion classes and was a den mother for Cub Scouts.

Ellen is currently president of the Council of Catholic Women (CCW) of St. Joseph's Parish in Baraboo where she also sings in the church choir. Ellen has been instrumental in the success the Gingerbread Christmas craft show, a yearly event that is the major fund-raiser of the CCW of St. Joseph's Parish. Even though Ellen and Jerry now own and operate a fishing resort, Camp Cedar Lake in Canada and only reside in Baraboo six months of the year, Ellen continues to be a leading force in any activity involving the women of St. Joseph's Parish.

Ellen serves as secretary for the Hillcrest Condo Association in Baraboo and secretary of the Cedar River Water Shed in Canada. Ellen volunteers for the Sauk County Giving Tree, the Baraboo Food Pantry, the Red Cross Blood Drive, and she and Jerry are now delivering "Meals on Wheels." Following Ryan's death, Jerry and Ellen established the Ryan Dargel Memorial Scholarship Fund benefiting Baraboo High School graduates.

While her children were growing up Ellen was an Avon representative, earning the status of Top Ten Sales Representatives in six of her 10 years with Avon. She also babysat for other children while their parents worked. After moving to Baraboo in 1982, she was employed at Weickgenant Accounting for 15 years and one year with Cross, Jenks, Mercer & Maffei Law Offices.


Ellen is a person of endless energy, compassion, caring and a person who believes in making a difference in the world around her. The word "no" is not part of her vocabulary. She is always there with a helping hand or a cheerful greeting. Throughout all of her activities, Ellen brings a higher level of new meaning to the words "exemplary volunteer and caregiver."

Milwaukee President's Message

Ladies, Gentlemen, and Shamrock Club members all;

Well the "Green" month started out a wee bit white, but nothing could dampen the Celtic Tiger nor the Irish spirit.

The Shamrock Club of Wisconsin was responsible for one of the best parades in the State.

Special thanks to Tim O'Brien, Mic McDermot, Mike and Dan (Dye-the-River-Green) Malloy, Mike Boyle and their entire crew of volunteers, and our friends at Westown.

The Post Parade Party, as always, had a fantastic line-up of entertainment... Barry Stapleton, as always, did a great great job.

Christine and Daryl Pluskota were terrific in the kitchen with a crew of volunteers that never quit. And of course, who helped set up the bars? The Quinlans, of course.

Many, many thanks to all the dancers, musicians, entertainers and especially the marvelous Shamrock Club volunteers. After that busy month you can rest... until Thursday the third and our next membership meeting.

Our annual Easter Rising Mass is held in April this year. The date is the 20th, ICHC is the location.

Nominations are open... one trustee position, Sarge at Arms, Parliamentarian, Membership Chair, Treasurer, Secretary, Vice President and President.

- Joe Hughes


Hallamor Concert Series Finale

Concert #8: bohola

The Irish Herald named bohola Irish music's newest "supergroup." Three of Irish music's finest and innovative musicians now living in the Chicago area (Jimmy Keane, Sean Cleland, and Pat Broaders) have joined to present a unique blend of music and song. With each regarded as tops in his field, this combination provides a rich and distinctive sound that is coupled with a dynamic and energetic presence - the sum of which is bohola.

"bohola is an acoustic power trio for the new century, a group whose instrumental virtuosity, strong vocals and stunning arrangements place them at the leading edge of today's traditional music scene. Their new Shanachie disc is one of the most impressive debut recordings ever made by an Irish traditional music group in America," says Don Meade, The Irish Voice. The key to their sound is the interplay between the musicians and the approach they take to the music. It is the music that counts. They listen to and respond to each other when they play- bending, twisting and caressing the music as it flows along.

A grand finale to our season!


Saturday, April 12, 2003 at 8 p.m.
Irish Cultural and Heritage Center of WI
2133 W. Wisconsin Ave.
Milwaukee, WI 53233
(414) 345-8800
Individual tickets:
$17 Reserved/advanced
$19 at the door
Opening for bohola
is Anam Ri at 7 p.m.

- Gwen Sisk, Publicist

Irish Immigrant Service Benefit

Irish Immigrant Service of Milwaukee (IISM) is a committee of the ICHC. Our mission is to serve the emergency needs of Irish immigrants in our area. IISM therefore provides emergency advice, and where possible, practical assistance to Irish immigrants and other newcomers to Southeastern Wisconsin. We offer a 24 hour emergency phone service; (414) 345-8888. (Emergency calls only!) We have a volunteer panel of counselors which includes professionals in the legal, medical, psychiatric, religious and financial fields. IISM operates without regard to religion, race, sexual orientation or political affiliation. It is a member of the Coalition of Irish Immigration Centres. The coalition is supported by both the Irish Department of Foreign Affairs and Department of Social and Family Affairs.

Now local bands and performers have generously come together to donate their time and talents to benefit IISM. "Just off the Boat," an evening for Irish immigration will take place at the ICHC on Saturday, May 10th. The line-up so far includes; Reilly, Waking Maggie, Leahy's Luck, Barry Dodd, Ian Gould, Finbar McCarthy, Milwaukee Irish Arts and more. Doors open at 6 p.m. and the craic starts at 7 p.m. Tickets are $8 in advance and $10 at the door. They are available from the ICHC, call (414) 345-8800. So mark your calendars now and plan to support this worthy cause.

- John Gleeson

First Friday Lectures

Celtic Women International First Friday Lectures are held at the ICHC, 2133 W Wisconsin Avenue, Milwaukee from 5:30- 7 p.m. on the "First Fridays" of the month. Admission is $5 per person. Everyone is welcome including gentlemen. These lectures are gems within our midst, having been held regularly since 1997.

April 4: by Meribeth Waldrop
"A tapestry of Scottish Costumes"

Meribeth Waldrop is the founder of the Caledonian Scottish Dancers; certified teacher of Scottish Dance; named Scot of the Year by the Caledonian Society; Founders Award from St. Andrews Society of Wisconsin; ex-bagpiper. Meribeth will review, explain and demonstrate various costumes worn by Scottish dancers in the local scene. She works at the International Institute of Wisconsin, and chairs the Highland Games Dance competitions.

May 2: by Nancy Walczyk, PhD.
"The Wild Irish Girls; 19th Century Irish Women Novelists"

Dr. Walczyk is associate director of the UWM Center for Celtic Studies; senior lecturer in English; specializes in literature in the Irish language, and distance education in Celtic Studies. She will discuss these writers: Maria Edgeworth, Sydney Ownson (Lady Morgan) and Somerville & Ross. Nancy was one of the very first presenters in the First Friday Lecture Series in 1997, telling us about "Erin's Daughters in America." She is a long-time coordinator for the Irish Fest Cultural area, and in her spare time, an accomplished harpist.

- Jean K. Bills

Eucharistic Ministers

We invite members who are Eucharistic Ministers in their parishes to volunteer to help us as needed. We have two events a year - Mass to honor St. Patrick at St. Patrick's Church at 8:30 a.m. the Saturday before St Patrick's Day - and the Easter Rising Mass Celebration at the ICHC at 9:30 a.m. on Easter Sunday. If you are interested please drop me a note with your name, address and phone number. I will contact you as needed. Thank you.

- Betty Mikush
2114 S 66th St., West Allis, WI 53219

St. Patrick's Help Fund

St. Patrick's Help Fund needs non-perishable foods, coats for adult men and for children, blankets, any games for ages 4-11 for after school programs, warm winter clothing for all ages. Please place in container at each meeting. However, donations can be brought to the ICHC any time during the week. It is not restricted to just meetings. A big thank you to everybody who has contributed to help the needy people at St. Patrick's. Questions? Call Katy Voss (414) 352-6479.

New Members

NOTE: Please send your dues to your Membership Chairperson in your chapter. All names and addresses are listed in Emerald Reflections.

Milwaukee - Gregory L. Banach; Steve and Linda Braley; Carol Budish; Barbara Jean Donaldson and son Cory; Kenneth Donohoe; Patricia Gribble; Audrey C. Julien; Kirby L. Pierce; Russell and Shery Poniewaz; James Patrick Thomas; Doris Vitucci; Jessica Zielski.

Membership Report Milwaukee Chapter:

January: 36 memberships up for renewal, 26 paid, 10 dropped for nonpayment.

February: 33 memberships up for renewal, 26 paid, 7 due.

March: 70 memberships up for renewal, 13 paid, 57 due.

-Tom Smith