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Around the Town

"Walking the Camino" film set for screenings in Brookline

By Liam Ferrie, special to the BIR, June 3, 2014

Last July the hottest ticket at the Galway Film Fleadh was the one that would gain you entry to a screening of the documentary “Walking the Camino: Six Ways to Santiago”. This wasn’t surprising as just about everyone in Ireland knows someone who has walked the 500-mile pilgrimage path from the south of France to Santiago de Compostela, in the province of Galicia in north-western Spain. The documentary is now set for a series of Boston screenings at Brookline's Coolidge Corner Theatre late this month and in early July. Read more

Greater Boston does well in Mid-Atlantic Fleadh

By BIR Staff Report, special to the BIR, May 1, 2014

Irish musicians from Greater Boston and Eastern Massachusetts made an impressive showing at the Mid-Atlantic Fleadh Cheoil held in Parsippany, NJ, April 25-27. Winners included: Rory Coyne (melodeon, Under-12); Seamus Noon (solo flute, Under-12); Armand Aromin, Patrick Hutchinson and Benedict Gagliardi (trio, Over-18); Liam Hart (English and Irish men’s singing, Over-18); Patrick Bowling (bodhran, Over-18); Stuart Peak (banjo, accompaniment, Over-18). Read more

Dublin-based clothier Primark to set up shop at Filene’s site

By Ed Forry, May 1, 2014

Dublin-based clothing retailer Primark will open a new United States flagship store in downtown Boston next year at the corner of Washington and Summer streets in the building made famous over the last century as headquarters of legendary Filene’s department store company. Read more

O’Neill Irish Diaspora Award to Senate President Murray

By Ed Forry, May 1, 2014

Therese Murray, the president of the Massachusetts State Senate, has been named the recipient of the third annual Tip O’Neill Irish Diaspora Award, which was established to recognize the achievements of members of the Diaspora in other countries and to celebrate the global impact of Irish people everywhere. Read more

Eire Society cites O’Donovan for its 2014 Gold Medal honor

By BIR Staff Report, special to the BIR, May 1, 2014

Brian O’Donovan, the host of WGBH Radio’s weekly program Celtic Sojourn, will receive Boston’s Eire Society 2014 Gold Medal honor at its annual dinner next month in Quincy. News of the honor was announced as the Irish group makes plans for its 77th annual awards banquet on Thurs., June 12, at the Neighborhood Club, with a reception at 6 p.m. followed by dinner at 7. Read more

‘Overwhelming support’ gives lift to inaugural Team MR8 in Marathon

By Bill Forry, Editor, special to the BIR, May 1, 2014

Channeling Martin's spirit, they ran, and ran, and ran...
For some — like Harry Benzan— the final stretch of the marathon on Boylston Street on April 21 remains a blur. Literally. He couldn’t see because of the tears streaming from both eyes as he neared the spot where his friends and neighbors were so callously and publicly attacked last year.
Benzan, one of the 100-plus runners on Team MR8— the marathon team assembled in memory of eight-year-old Martin Richard—coached young Martin on the soccer fields of Pope John Paul II Park. He endured despite a grueling morning: He had been hurting since Mile 4 and was a half-hour off his planned time. He was pretty sure he would finish, but he’d long-ago abandoned his original plan to hit the deck on Boylston Street and do 27 push-ups at the finish line. Read more

Cultural Center sets up new deal for Irish Festival

By By BIR Staff, special to the BIR, May 1, 2014

Music, dance, and fun on tap over 3 weekends
The Irish Cultural Centre of New England (ICCNE) in Canton is making a big change in the presentation of its annual Irish Festival this year.
Since 1990, the non-profit organization has staged a three-day festival of Irish music, dance, and merriment over one weekend, usually early in the month of June. The event, once billed as the largest Irish outdoor celebration in the Northeast, was held in its early years on the campus of Stonehill College off Route 138 in North Easton, and later was moved to the ICCNE’s Canton campus where it has taken place for the last decade. Read more

Sister city pact for Boston, Belfast

By Ed Forry, May 1, 2014

The growing ties between the cities of Boston and Belfast in Northern Ireland will be affirmed later this month when the mayors of the two municipalities are expected to sign a “Sister City” agreement.
Belfast’s  Sinn Fein mayor, Mairtin O Muilleoir, reached an agreement with Mayor Martin Walsh during a visit to Boston in March, according to a report in the Belfast Telegraph. Read more

Employment Opportunity- Consulate-General of Ireland

By Ed Forry, May 1, 2014

Position of Administrative Assistant
The Consulate-General of Ireland, Boston, would like to invite interested candidates to apply for the position of Administrative Assistant. The full-time position will become available in May 2014.
Candidates should possess excellent administrative skills and experience, a sense of initiative and the ability to work well under pressure, both alone and as part of a team. Knowledge of Ireland, its culture and languages desirable but not essential. Other terms and conditions apply. Read more

Irish American Art and Music Foundation launches tour to the sounds of Uncle Bing

By Ed Forry, special to the BIR, February 27, 2014

The historic M. Steinert & Sons piano retail showroom at 162 Boylston Street across from Boston Common was the setting of a private musical concert last month to mark the Boston launch of the Irish American Art and Music Foundation.
The foundation was established in 2011 by Howard Crosby, a nephew of the late Irish American crooner Bing Crosby, and Ireland’s Terence Browne, the brother of Boston attorney Aidan Browne. The two men sang and played in the first half of a 75-minute concert, with Crosby singing some Irish American treasures from his Uncle Bing’s songbook, accompanied by Browne on piano. Read more

Newsnotes around & about Boston's Irish

By BIR Staff, special to the BIR, February 27, 2014

He made many friends in his years here, doing poetry readings and participating as a valued member of the local community. He was a popular figure at many area universities, including Bridgewater State and Boston State, where he developed close and lasting friendships with students and faculty. Read more

The Month of St Patrick: Parades, concerts & more are everywhere!

By BIR Staff, special to the BIR, February 27, 2014

Sat., March 8, 2014
Cape Cod – Yarmouth at 11a.m.
Route is about 2 miles long. Parade starts at Long Pond Drive and Route 28 in South Yarmouth. Continues west on Route 28, over the Parker’s River Bridge, ending at Route 28 and Higgins Crowell Road/Berry Ave. Read more

‘Oh, Yo-Yo Ma, the pipes, the pipes are calling…’

By Bill Forry, special to the BIR, January 31, 2014

One of the more memorable moments of Mayor Martin J. Walsh’s inauguration ceremony at Boston College’s Conte Forum on Jan. 6 occurred during a musical interlude featuring Yo-Yo Ma, the 59-year-old Chinese American cellist who lives in Cambridge. Many in the audience anticipated that Ma might seek to tickle the mayor-elect’s Irish heartstrings, given that the official program book promised a “traditional Irish melody” as part of his medley, which also included George Crumb’s Toccata and Bach’s Cello Suite No. 3.

As he took the stage, more than a few boyos in the forum were elbowing each other with wisecracks of the “Yeah, Marty’s a huge Yo-Yo Ma fan” variety. But, when Ma eased into his interpretation of the mournful ballad “Danny Boy” — the smart talk ceased and the deep breaths began. Read more

This is the Marty Walsh we know

By Bill Forry, special to the BIR, January 31, 2014

On Jan. 6, the city and the region got its first extended glimpse of the political leader whom we’ve come to know, simply, as Marty. It was a good first impression and a reminder of why he won last fall: People want to like him.
They also want him to get better— to achieve more than even they thought he could. They still do. Like every one of us, he’s a work in progress. And that has been the case with him since Day One of his move into politics.
For folks from Dorchester, he is now the vessel of their own aspirations: the kid from the three-decker on Taft Street who has beaten cancer, a drive-by bullet blast, and “the disease” to grasp his city’s ultimate brass ring. Marty has become living, breathing proof that we can tame our own demons and even harness them for the purposes of a greater good— like ministering to an emerging generation of Bostonians whose futures are similarly imperiled by bullets and booze. Read more

IRISHMEN at the CORE-3 stalwarts pass away

By BIR Staff Reports, special to the BIR, January 31, 2014

Dr. William T. O’Connell of Duxbury, a podiatrist who was known to many as Dr. Bill, led an active life well into his 80s. He traveled extensively, touring Russia and South America, among other places while making 21 trips to Ireland. He skied into his 70s, and, with his wife Rita, devoted considerable time and resources to a wide range of Irish cultural and historic organizations, giving special emphasis, much time, and frequent lectures to educate, entertain and raise funds for the Deer Island Famine Memorial.
Lenahan O’Connell of Jamaica Plain, who died on Jan. 5, celebrated his 100th birthday last June. While a handful of people achieve the centenarian milestone, not many do so having lived a life so large as Mr. O’Connell. From family and the law to the very history and politics of Boston from the 20th to the 21st centuries, this rock-ribbed Boston Irish Democrat, did it all, with a keen sense of justice, humor, hard work, and a commitment to people, whether his law clients or those in society who needed the most help.
Robert H. Quinn, a Savin Hill, Dorchester, native, recovered from a life and death bout with tuberculosis as a young man to became one of the Commonwealth’s most powerful political leaders of his generation. Mr. Quinn, 85, was a state representative from Ward 13 who became speaker of the Massachusetts House and, later, state attorney general. He was a pivotal figure in bringing the University of Massachusetts to its present home on Dorchester’s Columbia Point in the 1970s.
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