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Irish universities head to Boston to tout opportunities

By Ed Forry, April 1, 2014

At BC High on Sunday, April 6
By Ed Forry
Admissions officials from five Irish universities will be in Boston early this month to hold an open house to market the opportunities the schools offer to American students.
Education in Ireland will host a free admissions information event for students, parents, and high school college counselors from the greater Boston area, according to Kevin O’Brien of Enterprise Ireland, who said the event will provide “all you need to know” about studying at an Irish university.”
The session is set for 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. this coming Sunday, April 6, at BC High on Morrissey Blvd. The admissions representatives will hail from Trinity College Dublin, University College Dublin, University of Limerick, Dublin City University, and University College Cork. Read more

For Boston and Ireland’s West, a better connection

By Ed Forry, February 27, 2014

By Ed Forry
Even as officials of Tourism Ireland count up the successes of last year’s promotion for “The Gathering Ireland/2013,” the island of Ireland government is gearing up for a new way to encourage North American visitors to put the Emerald Isle into their travel plans. The big tourism push this year centers around the designation of Limerick as Ireland’s “City of Culture Year.” This year alone, the city expects to be the venue for some 200 performances and exhibitions. Read more

Let’s make their dream for a Deer Island Irish Memorial come true

By Ed Forry, January 31, 2014

By Ed Forry
Dr. Bill and Rita O’Connell, longtime stalwarts of Boston’s Irish community, spent much of their life learning about “The Great Hunger,” the famine that ravaged Ireland in the middle of the 19th century. Many died from starvation, and many others sought to extend their lives by cramming into sailing ships to escape to America.
In Boston, some 25,000 Irish souls arrived in our harbor on the “coffin ships” between 1847 and 1849, and the city’s health officials steered the vessels to Deer Island, where the passengers were quarantined to prevent any communicable diseases from coming ashore. Read more

Enter Mayor Walsh, son of Ireland, BC, and Dorchester

BIR Publisher
This January marks the end of an era in our city. On the first Monday of the New Year, Jan. 6, Hyde Park’s Tom Menino will step down as Boston’s Mayor, and Dorchester’s Marty Walsh will be sworn in as the new chief executive. Read more

JFK, Marty Walsh- strong, deep Irish ties with Boston

By Ed Forry, December 2, 2013

The ancestral bonds that will forever link the town of Boston with the Emerald Isle were in great evidence last month as Ireland’s citizenry and its media were riveted with two huge stories from our city’s Democratic politics.

The first, of course, was the anniversary of President Kennedy’s assassination, an event that even today occasions spasms of tears from the Irish. In New Ross, where JFK had greeted his cousins just months before his death, a special commemoration was held on Nov. 22. Read more

The stirring story of a team and its city

By Ed Forry, October 31, 2013

As I write these words, the marvelous run of this year’s Boston Red Sox is just a few hours shy of its conclusion.
Tonight, our Olde Town Team will take to the field at Fenway for a World Series Game 6, leading three games to two, and Boston awaits in hopeful anticipation that tonight’s game will be a victory, even as images come to mind of one more Duck Boat Victory parade on the streets of downtown Boston before this week comes to an end. Or maybe not. Read more

‘The Gathering’- the dream come true

By Ed Forry, October 9, 2013

by Ed Forry
BIR Publisher
Irish government tourism officials are exuberant over the success of the Clan Gatherings promotion developed by the Tourism Ireland agency for the current year.
According to a Sept. 26 Associated Press report, “ “Ireland’s government says tourism to the Emerald Isle is rising and could reach a record high for American visitors, as many are coming especially for a year of clan-based parties. The figures from the Central Statistics Office found that the number of overseas tourists to Ireland reached 4.75 million in the first eight months of this year, 6.5 percent more than the equivalent period of 2012. Nearly half arrived in the June-August peak time. Read more

Nothing is free – not even the news

By Ed Forry, August 29, 2013

By Ed Forry
BIR Publisher

The news last month that the principal owner of Boston’s major league baseball team (the one and only) has agreed to a deal to become the principal owner of Boston’s largest (and best) daily newspaper was met with only mild surprise among the populace.
The sale of the Boston Globe to Red Sox owner John Henry by the New York Times came at a hugely reduced price – The Globe last was sold in 1993 for $1.1 billion; the selling price in 2013 has been put in the $70 million range, and that includes all the newspaper’s Morrissey Boulevard real estate, its websites, and the Worcester Telegram as well. A Bonwit Teller legacy property is sold at Filene’s Basement prices! Read more

Remembering O’Brien’s ‘Classic’ in Dublin in ‘88

By Ed Forry, July 31, 2013

by Ed Forry
BIR Publisher

Last Labor Day weekend, we were passing through Dublin Airport for a connecting flight to Paris. It was early on that Sunday morning, yet the concourse was crowded with travelers.
It was the kick-off weekend of the Irish government’s year-long tourism campaign called the Gathering, and it seemed there were an unusually large number of Americans in the airport’s departure for such an early hour.
Then, as we rounded a corner, we came across a bevy of American football players and their supporters. It was the Notre Dame team, heading back to Indiana after opening the season the evening before with a game against the Naval Academy. Playing before some 48,000 spectators at Dublin’s Aviva Stadium on Lansdowne Road, the ND team won big, 50-10. Read more

The Markey way will serve us well

By Ed Forry, June 27, 2013

by Ed Forry
I was in the room on election night on June 25, and I cheered along with hundreds of others as Ed Markey took the stage for the first time as our state’s new US Senator. Born and raised in working-class Malden and a graduate of Malden Catholic, Boston College, and BC Law School, he was the first recipient of a Boston Irish Honors in 2010, when this newspaper celebrated its 20th anniversary.
Ed Markey has deep family roots in Waterville, County Kerry, and is descended from two lines of Irish immigrants who came to America for a better life. His maternal grandparents – Patrick Courtney, a coal carrier, and Brigid Sullivan, a maid – emigrated to the United States in 1902, and settled in Malden. Today, Markey still makes his home just nine doors away from their home, the place where his mother grew up. Read more