The year 2011 was a great year for Cork. Cork really pushed out its potential this year by focussing on its tourism potential and its welcome to international dignitaries. It also focussed on the value of the arts and the power of education.
January 2011: North Monastery 200 Celebrations begin! The North Mon as its affectionately known has been educating people since 1811. It’s year of celebrations began in January with a light show. In August I led two historical walking tours of the area, taking in Blackpool and the early origins of Gurranabraher. http://kieranmccarthy.ie/wordpress/?p=5516
February 2011: Do Vote, We Need a Way Forward! A time of great change in Dail Eireann. Many people came out to vote and changed the old guard. http://kieranmccarthy.ie/wordpress/?p=5860
March 2011: Sunny Spring landscapes at the Atlantic Pond Cork. Always a great space to explore in any season. My tours down the old Cork Blackrock and Passage Railway Line (1850-1932) continued this year exploring the history of the rail line and adjacent areas such as the Marina, Ballintemple, Blackrock and Mahon http://kieranmccarthy.ie/wordpress/?p=6027
April 2011: Launch Night, Triskel at Christ Church, Cork. It was great to be part of this evening and to see the early eighteenth century restored Christ Church officially handed over by Cork City Council to Triskel Arts Centre. It is a great venue to bring tourists and local groups into. It was a job very well done in terms of restoration. http://kieranmccarthy.ie/wordpress/?p=6279
May 2011: Visit of Queen Elizabeth II to the English Market. A day, well organised and anticipated. It brought enormous international media interest in Cork City. it was interesting as well to see the debates play out in the media, as to the significance of the pros and cons of the visit to Ireland. http://kieranmccarthy.ie/wordpress/?p=6586
June 2011: Cork Summer Show. Always a great day out at their temporary venue at Greenfields in Ballincollig. This year, even the sun came out. Also the Munster Agricultural Society published their book, written by myself, on the history of the Society and the Cork Showgrounds in Ballintemple. http://kieranmccarthy.ie/wordpress/?p=6864
Honourable mention for June 2011! the Where’s Wally World record attempt in Fitzgerald’s Park, What a fantastic atmosphere! http://kieranmccarthy.ie/wordpress/?p=6706
July 2011: Exhibition, Cork Branch, Western Front Association. A great exhibition, which showcased Cork’s connection to World War I. The public were offered an insight into life during the war and an opportunity to gain information to research relatives who served in the British army during the conflict. http://kieranmccarthy.ie/wordpress/?p=7024
August 2011: Mutiny on the Bounty Ship at Cork Docks. The City’s Docks are full of history and there are acres of books written on the city’s maritime connections. However, it is great for the imagination when a sailing ship does come to moor in the city, especially one with a Hollywood connection.
September 2011: Heritage Week in Cork. Another week of heritage projects by many heritage leaders in Cork. This year, my focus was on late nineteenth century Cork and Cork in the 1920s and 1930s. Locales I engaged with included Douglas, Shandon, Blackpool, Cork City Hall and the general evolution of the City. http://kieranmccarthy.ie/wordpress/?p=7333
October 2011: Dragon of Shandon Parade, Shandon, Cork. Now an annual feature of the City’s arts calender, Cork Community Artlink are tremedous hard workers and have managed to empower the great people of the Shandon area (young and old) to support their Halloween Creatures on parade. It’s difficult not to be taken by the enthusiam, excitement and pride for the Dragon project. http://kieranmccarthy.ie/wordpress/?p=7652
November 2011: Cork Pops Orchestra with Schools from Cork and further afield. Each year, the CPO bring school children into Cork’s City Hall into the gorgeous Concert Hall for a hour of fun filled music education (clapping, singing along and stomping all allowed!)http://kieranmccarthy.ie/wordpress/?p=7744
December 2011: Christmas in Cork 2011. Cork continues to push out its christmas market potential. Bishop Lucey Park this year was again magically transformed into a Christmassy world, the English Market became all festive, the city got a cow up a tree and this writer got a part in the Everyman Palace panto (o yes he did)!http://kieranmccarthy.ie/wordpress/?p=7842