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"Half a Parish ~ A Complete Club" Launched in the Ard Rí

posted 2 Apr 2013, 09:56 by Unknown user

Last Saturday saw the long awaited launch of “Half a Parish, A Complete Club”. The book on the 125 year history of Cortoon Shamrocks was officially launched by former GAA President and Cortoon player, Joe McDonagh, who spoke of his admiration for the book, its quality and content, and of his pride of wearing the Cortoon colours in the past. The MC for the night was well-known broadcaster and journalist, Tom Gilmore, who said how honoured he was to have been asked to help launch the book. 125yr Committee Chairman, Pa Quinn, spoke of his admiration for the effort put in by all of the committee involved in writing the book as he called out their names from the “Teamsheet” to great applause. Club Chairman, Mark Gilmore, noted that it wasn’t all hard work for the committee, that great enjoyment was also had while discovering facts and stories from bygone days (and some more recent ones too). He also commented that the release of the book would not be the end-result of all the work, but rather a starting point for the development and stability of the Club for the next 125 years. A number of other projects are already underway, including, the formation of an Underage Development Committee, to try to improve the attraction and enjoyment of our games for our young members and to ensure that they can enjoy it in a safe environment.

A number of presentations were also made on the night. Mickey Gilmore, proprietor of the Club’s main sponsor, The Cortoon Inn, presented a new set of jerseys to Club Treasurer, Sinead Murray. The new jerseys feature a number of changes to commemorate our 125th Anniversary and includes our new crest, which now has two angels incorporated into the design in memory of Kate and Grace Gilmore, tragically taken from their family last year. Club captain, David Finnegan, made a presentation on behalf of the Senior panel to Michael John Concannon who stepped down from his role on the Senior management team after five years of dedicated service. During this time, Michael John helped to guide the Club to its first County Senior final in 2008 and to Senior League success in 2009. His will be a hard act to follow. The Connolly Cup, for Clubperson of the Year was presented to Keith Mulvany by Norman Connolly on behalf of the Connolly family.

The event was a huge success and far exceeded the expectations of those involved and this can be attributed to the vision and expertise of Fidelma Murray who organised it and, along with her team of helpers, set up the room for the night. The evening also featured an exhibition of photos and memorabilia collected from the many supporters of the project and included a number of jerseys previously worn by the Club, trophies and medals won down through the years, DVDs of old games, and slideshows of the hundreds of photos we have gathered over the last year. Also on display were the All-Star Awards won by Cortoon players, past and present. The night also provided an opportunity for old acquaintances to renew their friendships and many stayed on afterwards swapping stories well into the night.

Of course, the launch couldn’t have been such a success were it not for the great support of our members and friends and we owe a huge debt of gratitude to each and every one of them. The book is now on general sale, priced €19.99, and is available from a number of shops around Tuam and from the Cortoon Inn.