Race Committee Fundraising Prowess – Often Copied, Never Equalled

Kerry Hospice Foundation, Castleisland branch Chairman, Jack Shanahan (centre) accepting a cheque for €1,100 from Ronan Bourke of the Castleisland Race Committee as part of the proceeds of the Castleisland Drive-in-Bingo. Included are: Mary Shanahan, Kerry Hospice Foundation; John Ryan, Castleisland Race Committee and Cllr. Charlie Farrelly race committee chairman. ©Photograph: John Reidy
Comfort for Chemo representative, Cora Walsh (left) accepting a cheque for €3,500 from Mary Fitzmaurice and her daughters: Laura, Sharon and Ava. The cheque is the proceeds of the Paudie Fitzmaurice Memorial Bucket Collection held in Castleisland just before Christmas. ©Photograph: John Reidy
Members of the Paudie Fitzmaurice Memorial Bucket Collection team who presented a cheque for €3,500 to Cora Walsh who accepted on behalf of Comfort for Chemo in Castleisland on Sunday afternoon. Included are: Cllr. Charlie Farrelly, Danny Kelliher, Joe, Derarca and Caroline O’Connor. ©Photograph: John Reidy

God and the government willing, the next Drive-in-Bingo in Castleisland will be held on the May bank holiday weekend.

There is lots of time to be thinking about starting times and jackpots in the meantime.

Often copied, never equalled was a well know advertising slogan a few years ago and it could well apply today to the drive and fundraising capabilities of the Castleisland Race Committee.

Mart Yard Bingo Extravaganza

It is under its direction that the mart yard bingo extravaganza has been held over the past few years.

Though last year and this one to date, have been uncertain at least and unpredictable for sure, the committee has managed to raise a total of €17,040 for a range of local charities.

It has also thrown its considerable weight and experience behind the Paudie Fitzmaurice Memorial Street Bucket Collection and achieved the remarkable total of €3,500 for the University Hospital Kerry based Comfort for Chemo a few days before last Christmas.

Cheque Presentation

At Sunday’s cheque presentation in the safe distance affording yard of Walsh Bros Electrical, the committee presented a cheque for €1,100 to the Castleisland Fundraising branch of the Kerry Hospice Foundation.

The donation was gratefully accepted by Jack Shanahan, branch chairman and member, Mary Shanahan.

Paudie Fitzmaurice Collection

Up the yard a bit, another presentation went ahead as the family of the late Paudie Fitzmaurice presented the impressive proceeds of their street bucket collection to Cora Walsh – who accepted on behalf of Comfort for Chemo.

The donations, in this time and during the prevailing circumstances, are all the more remarkable because of the stop / start nature of the past year in terms of events being cancelled all over the place.

Purchase of Defibrillators

However, the May bank holiday weekend is now the great hope of the altruistic committee which organised Kerry’s and Munster’s first Drive-in-bingo in 2011.

It still tops its recently arrived competition in terms of prize-money and drawing power.

The committee has also backed the purchase of wall mounted defibrillators for strategic locations around the town in response to a request from the Castleisland First Responders.

Often copied – never equalled.

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