This blog is a personal take on Listowel, Co. Kerry. I am writing for anyone anywhere with a Listowel connection but especially for sons and daughters of Listowel who find themselves far from home. Contact me at

Category: Athea

October Horse Fair

Listowel Community fruit and Nut garden


Nothing to Crow About

Crow on a headstone in St. Michael’s cemetery


More from Hospice Coffee Morning

These are just some more of the people who were at the hospice coffee morning on Oct 5 2023. Because I don’t know all of the names I’m putting none of the names.


Another Coffee Morning

Presentation Secondary School staff

Photo: from Facebook


October Horse Fair

October 5 was also the day of the quarterly horsehair. There were dogs and goats, hens and ducks but few enough horses.


Athea Tidy Towns

“Fresh from yesterday’s Tidy Town’s results, we have our first project for next year’s competition complete! Many thanks to John Brosnan for sharing his talents and professionalism in building the perfect frame to house the below plaque which reads ;  ‘These trees planted on the 11th of April 2020 are dedicated to the Hurley family in honour of their commitment and service to Athea Creameries. Denis W. Hurley, founding member and Chairman for 45 years (1913 –1958). His son Willie, 47 years’ service at both Cratloe & Athea Creameries  (1932 – 1979). His wife, Nan (née Stack), Butter-maker from (1939 –1953). Many thanks to the Hurley Family for sponsoring these trees.” Athea TT on Facebook


A Fact

Ever heard of a pleonasm?

It’s the use of more words than are necessary to convey meaning.


Kick it with your foot.

I saw it with my own eyes.

The two twins were on the team.


Summertime is Visitor Time

What a difference a week makes; St John’s under cloudy skies in June 2023


Corpus Christi Processions

This year the feast of Corpus Christi fell on June 8. The tradition is to hold a processsion preceeded by this year’s first communicants on a weekend near the date.

Listowel procession photo from Listowel Girl’s Primary Facebook page

Athea parade photos by Bridie Murphy


In Kerry Writers’ Museum

Even a short visit to Listowel gives time to take in some of our lovely visitor attractions.

Last week I accompanied Phil to Kerry Writers’ Museum.

Our visitor centre in the square used to be called The Seanchaí. A statue of Eamonn Kelly, Seanchaí, greets visitors at the foot of the stairs.

Phil enjoyed the John B. Keane room. She remembered attending his plays and always enjoying his writing.

I was anxious to show her the Michael O’Connor corner. The beautiful pieces look marvellous under the light in their climate controlled cabinets.

When you look closely at the above details on the St. Patrick’s Breastplate scroll you will be amazed at the intricate detail achieved by this super talented local artist. I hope many many Listowel people visit the exhibition this summer. You will be amazed.


Varying Shades of Dolly

Brendan O’Sullivan rocking the denim and stetson look

Most people accessorised with a guitar, this man brought a skateboard

I met Phil adding a few sparkles to her outfit

If your footwear was too undollylike, people in the Costume Fixing marwquee had plenty of high heels to cowboy boots available.

Jimmy Deenihan as you have never seen him before.

The queue moved along slowly but in good form. Everyone had to be photographed and braceleted for the record.


Meanwhile in Ballybunion

Ballybunion Golf Club annual captains’ weekend was a huge success raising funds for seven local charities.



Bridge Road in February 2023


In Athea

I don’t think I’ve been in Athea since Covid. It was high time I visited my favourite outdoor art gallery. Last time I was there Jim Dunn, artist/muralist had a cover erected so that he could work in all weathers. That was gone and I could see the work in progress in all its splendour.

The forge mural is across the road from the church.

The morning was sunny and the standard for the hanging baskets was casting its shadow on the doctor.

The blacksmith/farrier is a new addition. Isn’t that such a kindly face? The anvil awaits another day.

I love all the men in the artwork.

I love all the horses too.

While I was there I met two lovely real men who stopped for a chat and posed for a photo.


The Optical Suite

Lower William Street, February 2023


A Very Sad Relic of 1950s Ireland

When “many young men of twenty” said goodbye to Ireland forever.

This was donated by Eileen Fahey to John Creedon’s National Treasures.

Here is what she wrote;

“A Catholic Handbook. This little booklet measuring 9cm x 11.5cm, which cost sixpence highlights a very different Ireland. Published in 1954, the handbook was drawn up because “economic difficulties especially the scarcity of work in counties like Mayo, Kerry and Galway have caused boys and girls to leave homes in Ireland and seek a living in the land across the water.” When I took up my first teaching post in Roscommon in 1974, it was part of the library in the school. I was given the responsibility to sort out the school library and when I found this document, I decided to keep it because it speaks volumes about Ireland at a certain period in time. You wouldn’t know whether to laugh or cry reading it but when I first read it, I recognised its historical value. In many ways, it was sad that it was a reference book in a school library where many students would have emigrated from. It gives insight into the loneliness, isolation, and fear of emigration in the 1950s. On arrival in England, the book advises that one of the first things you should do is look up the local parish priest.”


Fact of the Day

Actor and film star, Jack Lemmon was born in 1925… a lift.

His mother was playing Bridge and was engrossed in a particularly good game, so good that even though she realised that birth was imminent she refused to leave the table until the last minute.

History doesn’t tell us if she won the game.


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