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Limerick LGBTI Pride Festival 2016 got under way last week with a number of special events held for members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender and intersex (LGBTI) communities in the city, as well as the wider Limerick public.
As always, there was an educational aspect to the Limerick LGBTI Pride Festival 2016. Support meetings will be held throughout the week for youth, adult and transgender groups.
The main event, of course, was the annual Limerick Pride parade, which kicked off last Saturday from City Hall.
The theme of this year’s festival was #UnitedColoursofLimerick and the Parade was led by Broden Giambrone, the chief executive of Transgender Equality Network Ireland. Broden brought many friends from Dublin and after the Parade made an inspirational speech at PrideFest 2016, a showcase of local LGBT culture, held in a beautiful marquee on the grounds of the Hunt Museum.
In 2015, Ireland saw the Marriage Equality Referendum passed as well as a Bill on Gender Recognition; Broden said that although these are welcome changes and are massive steps in LGBTI history in Ireland there is still a lot to be done. Broden says there is a need for hate-crime legislation, increased supports nationally and the revision of the Gender Recognition Act to include all members of the trans community.
“More broadly increased positive visibility is what we need, that is what changes people’s views. Legislation is important but we need to show that as trans people, we are part of Irish society, we are your siblings, your co-workers, your friends, we are your family. We are one element, one aspect of human diversity.”
Pride festivals are a celebration of history, community and acceptance said Broden, who also believes it is the perfect platform to educate society on the LGBTI community, “A lot of people at Pride come from within the community, but you also get a lot of friends, families and allies coming as well, so it is the perfect platform to be talking about these issues and the diversity of the LGBTI community.”
“Being trans is part of the human condition, we should be able to accept that and celebrate it like we do all diversities. Positive visibility is a big part; supporting people in being able to live true to who they are.”
I was honoured that Broden said yes when I asked him to be the Grand Marshall for this years Limerick Pride. There is a need for LGBTI Pride festivals, as long as others in the global LGBTI community are not as fortunate as us in Ireland in terms of equal human rights. We must take a stand for human rights for all. That’s why our theme this year is #UnitedColoursofLimerick. We want Pride to be an inclusive, open and integrated event welcoming all people regardless of their sexual or gender orientation, religion or race. This year we aimed to put the T back into LGBTI, with a focus specifically on advancing the rights and equality of trans people and their families and we succeeded admirably. It was thrilled to be able to see transgendered people walking through the streets of Limerick with the people of Limerick put on the streets waving them on with love.
The Limerick Pride LGBTI Festival 2016 took place starting on Monday July 11 until Sunday July 17 with the Parade on Saturday July 16 and featured a multitude of events from workshops, support meetings and discussions to evenings of music and club nights, to cater to the Pride needs of everyone.
A Day in May photograph exhibition was launched in The Belltable, 69 O’Connell Street on Monday, July 11 to coincide with Limerick LGBTI Pride.
Limerick Pride’s official Launch night was on Monday July 11 and finished off in Strokers Gay Bar on William Street with champagne, finger food and dance floor musical treats. Strokers are opening 7 nights during Pride to offer something different on every night of Pride.
On Tuesday July 12 from 1pm to 4pm, Strokers Gay Bar hosted a Trans Workshop. Whether you’re interested in learning to put on make up, pick out high heels or how to create a realistic beard, this was a very special event. Experts were there to show all who attended the skills you need to present in your gender.
On Wednesday July 13, the Pride Wedding Show, a wedding fair established in 2014 as part of Limerick Pride Festival, took place from 6pm to 8pm, venue TBD. Sharon McMeel, an award winning wedding planner, said about the fair: “We’ll have different suppliers and vendors there, so all couples regardless of their sexual orientation will have a good opportunity to get answers to their important questions if they are considering getting married. With the historic ‘Yes’ vote last year for the marriage referendum, it’s great to be able to look out for all the people who have gotten newly engaged.”
Wednesday after the Pride Wedding Show, Cobblestone Joes was home to the Limerick Pride Open Mic night. The inclusive atmosphere of one of Limericks top music venues was the perfect fit for the #UnitedColoursofLimerick theme with all singers and musicians welcome for this fantastic music celebration.
On Thursday July 14, Mezz Ladies Night at the Red Hen saw the comeback of the hottest night for girls who like girls with a prosecco reception, DJ and late bar with free admission.
On Friday, July 15 the now traditional event ‘T’was the night before Pride’ took place at Mickey Martins from 9pm-11.30pm. Running since 2008, Mickey Martins returned for another year to host the pre-pride party with guest DJ Aoife Nic Canna. Afterwards it was off to Club Milk’s 3rd Birthday Bash with DJ Gary G.
The annual Limerick LGBTI Pride parade began on Saturday July 16, and brought some extra colour and music to Limerick City Centre, gathering at City Hall at 1.30pm, the Parade made its way at 2.30pm sharp up O’Connell Street, across Mallow Street to Henry Street, past Arthurs Quay Park and returned to the Hunt Museum for PrideFest 2016.
PrideFest 2016 was a showcase of local LGBT culture in Limerick in a lavish marquee in the museum gardens with host Paul Ryder, with special guests Hands in Harmony Deaf Community Choir and back by popular demand Patrick James, Voice of Ireland 2015 winner. Limerick legend, actor, director and playwright, Myles Breen held his annual tea dance, which for many is a highlight of the festival.
That night after Pridefest, the main Climax Party at Dolan’s Warehouse, featured Queens of Limerick, Madonna Lucia and Sheila Fitzpatrick taking to the stage with local acts and with the Dublin queens of “Dragged Up” including Gala award entertainer of the year Victoria Secret, Paul Ryder, Regina George and Pixie, followed by DJ Ruth on the main floor, a “Saved by the 90s” party upstairs and Madonna Lucia hosting her monthly party at Confessions with DJ Bugsy. Three rooms packed with colour, vibrancy and music for all.
On Sunday, June 17, a Prideful Recovery Event was held at GOSHH, 18 Davis Street from 1pm – 5pm with holistic therapies including Reiki, Tarot and angel card readings.
A full line-up for Pride week can be found at www.LimerickPride.ie with updates at www.facebook.com/limerickpride. Tag your photos and comments about this years Pride with #UnitedColoursofLimerick.
For media inquires contact [email protected].
To check out all the updates on Limerick LGBTI Pride Festival 2016 click here.
For more news stories about Pride from I Love Limerick click here.
The excitement is building up as the countdown for the ECOC jury panel’s review of Limerick on Tuesday, July 12 starts coming closer. Limerick has got one last chance to push the city’s European Capital of Culture Limerick 2020 bid with a spectacular street party to celebrate the magical journey of the campaign.
While the ECOC jury panel reviews the city and the cultural institutions, thousands of the city’s citizens will get to indulge themselves in culinary delicacies, art and musical culture. The event will start up around midday and finish in the evening.
The public will be treated to various events including the Culture and Chips food carnival on O Connell Ave from noon onwards, a taste of international cuisine with the World Recipe Exchange, and lots of gatherings at venues such as the Hunt Museum, Howley’s Quay and O’Connell Street’s urban garden.
Daniel O’Connell’s whole block on upper O’Connell Street between Hartstonge Street and Barrington Street (the area known as The Crescent in the Georgian Quarter) will become party central as Culture & Chips Takes To The Streets from noon until evening.
If Limerick succeeds, it will indeed be historic. It’ll also be – according to estimates – worth around €170m to the city. Limerick won’t get to enter the European Capital of Culture again for another 15 years so that’s also why there is such a huge push to try and succeed.
The Limerick 2020 bid team makes its final presentation to the panel at the National Concert Hall in Dublin on July 14 and the winner being announced the following day. It’s a tough competition as Limerick competes against Galway, Waterford, Wexford and Kilkenny for the title.
Bid director Mike Fitzpatrick said that now is “the right time” for Limerick to earn the prestigious title. “Limerick is aware that the jury is in town, but it’s not about the jury; it is about having a moment to say, ‘Look how far we have come’ in terms of how culture has formed part of everyday life in Limerick. Whatever happens on July 15, whatever the decision is, culture will remain at the centre of what we do. It has given us so much confidence and belief in ourselves.”
Bid deputy director, Sheila Deegan, said the festive day “may go down as one of the most important days for the city.”
“Win or lose with the Limerick 2020 bid, we have achieved an awful lot and it is time to celebrate so we are asking that as many people as possible to turn out and enjoy this party with us. The journey has awakened a real sense of cultural identity in Limerick and a wider awareness of just how rich, diverse and talented our cultural heritage is. We were Ireland’s first City of Culture and we certainly showed over the course of that magical year just how much Limerick has found its cultural voice and it is now singing from the rooftops.”
Read more about Limerick 2020 here
Follow Limerick 2020 on Twitter here
The LGBT community in Limerick invited the public to attend a candlelight vigil in memory of the 50 people who have lost their lives and those injured in the attacks in Orlando on Sunday, June 12.
There were two vigils being held. The first was held at the Treaty Stone.
The second candlelight vigil was held in Arthur’s Quay Park, Limerick city at 6:30 pm on Wednesday, June 15.
The organisers encouraged those attending to spread the word, to bring a candle if possible and to bring rainbow colours, flags or paint so the Limerick LGBTI Community honour Orlando victims in a way that will be colourful and memorable.
There was a minute silence held to remember, reflect or to pray for those affected by the violence in the attack from this weekend.
All members of the public were welcome to attend; the aim of the vigil was to show solidarity not just for the LGBT community but for everybody who has been affected by acts of terror, violence or oppression in their lives.
“The vigil is being held In solidarity with families, friends, loved ones and LGBT+ community and wider community in Florida, and in solidarity with all the people around the world who have been and continue to be affected by terrorism and all forms of violence and oppression,” said Laura Ryan, head of communications at Limerick City and County Council.
Limerick Chronicle columnist Richard Lynch, who organised Wednesday evening’s vigil, said the gathering was for all members of society.
“It is a chance for us to reflect on what has happened. It is not just for the LGBTQ community,” he explained. “I chose this day as it is also Irish Aids Day and it is a day that we as a community need to be unified.”
“All of us have been affected by this. Anyone who is concerned about humanity at all, the loss of a loved one, be it a child, a sister or a brother should attend,” he added.
In honour of the victims of the attacks in the Pulse gay club in Orlando which saw 50 people killed and left many more suffering injuries, the Limerick council will be opening an online book of condolences to the public.
The book of condolences will open at 10 am on Tuesday, June 14. You can access and sign the Limerick City and County Council book of condolences here.
You can find more information on Limerick LGBT Pride here.
For more stories related to the LGBT Community, you can click here.
Caseys Centra host Love Thy Neighbour Summer Carnival in aid of the Mid West Simon Community and Limerick Marine Search and Rescue takes place on Thursday June 16, from noon until 3 pm, at the Caseys Centra store, Mount Kenneth on the Dock Road.
Munster Rugby star Duncan Casey, actor Myles Breen and Richard Lynch of I Love Limerick will be your hosts for a day of summer festivities with carnival games, free food tastings, drinks, music, prizes and giveaways galore with Limerick’s Live 95fm providing music during their live roadshow.
Caseys Centra are inviting guests to sample their tasty deli food offerings, including Mexican dishes, carvery dinners, sandwiches and salad creations. Carnival games include ‘Test your Strength’ where you could win a signed Paul O’Connell Munster Rugby Jersey, ‘Dunking Duncan’, an opportunity to dunk one of Munster Rugby’s hottest players into a bath of freezing cold water, Hook a Duck and Piñata Bash.
All activities on the day are donation based and organisers are pleading for the public to dig deep in order to raise as much funds as possible for two extremely deserving Limerick based charities.
The event concept originated when management from Caseys Centra, located on the Dock Road, saw the positive impact they had on their neighbours Mid West Simon Community after they began donating unused food to the charity’s service users. Caseys Centra decided they needed to do more. This evolved into a fundraising day for both Mid West Simon Community and fellow neighbouring charity, Limerick Marine Search and Rescue.
Kevin Foley, Manager Caseys Centra said, “Calling the fundraiser “Love thy Neighbour” came from us wanting to show our support for local organisations such as businesses, charities and communities. There is strength in numbers and if we all support one another, Limerick would be unstoppable. We want these charities to know we are there for them and will continue throughout the year to support them unconditionally.
Jackie Bonfield, General Manager Mid-West Simon Community, said, “We are so honoured that our neighbours Caseys Centra and Limericks Live 95fm have decided to support our fundraising initiatives with an event that not only shows the best of Limerick but also stresses the importance of how much we all need love and support from our neighbours.”
Joe Morgan, Chairperson Limerick Marine Search and Rescue said, “This year we are celebrating our 30th anniversary and in the spirit of community, the event really emphasises the importance of local support. Our organisation is volunteer based and we need to raise ongoing funds to continue the work we do.
Fergal Deegan, Marketing Manger Limericks Live 95, said, “We are thrilled to support our neighbours and the work they do. Limerick Marine Search and Rescue play a key part in tracing missing people in Limerick. The River Shannon is the life force of Limerick and this organisation keeps it safe for all of us. Mid West Simon Community reaches out to people who are homeless, at risk of homelessness or experiencing housing difficulties. Both organisations are vital to the Limerick community.”
Love Thy Neighbour Summer Carnival in aid of the Mid West Simon Community and Limerick Marine Search and Rescue is on Thursday, June 16 from noon to 3pm at Caseys Centra and all are welcome.
A variety of FREE cycling inspired events will take place across Limerick for BeSPOKE 2016, Limerick Smarter Travel’s cycling festival between 11th-19th June 2016, it was announced today (Tuesday).
For the second year running individuals and groups from schools, communities, campuses and workplaces have the opportunity to avail of funding to help them run their own cycling inspired event. Limerick’s ‘Bike Week – Event Fund’ will see 18 groups receive financial support to independently run their own BeSPOKE 2016 event. Event fund winners include: Milford N.S., St. Pauls N.S., Shanagolden VTOS, Team Adare Cycling Club, Extern Foster Care, Cook Medical, Wild Atlantic Sports, Cycle4Sick Children, Johnson & Johnson, West End Youth Space, Northside Youth Space, Southill Area Centre, Northern Trust, Southside Youth Space, Sophie’s Journey Foundation, Limerick Milk Market, Mary Immaculate College, & Kileedy GAA.
The highlight event from Limerick Smarter Travel will take place on Sunday June 12th with registration from two o’clock with the ‘Riverside Family Cycle’ starting at the Irish Estates, passing through the Shannon Fields before turning down the Park Canal and ending at O’Brien’s Park in Clare Street. The family-friendly cycle will be immediately followed by a ‘Party in the Park’ where there will be entertainment for everyone including;
Ireland’s first ‘Cycle Trials’ competition, with 4 class categories from novis to intermediate, hosted by Sean Putt, one of Ireland’s elite cycle trials riders.
The 1916|2016 ‘Best in Show’ competition for cyclists and bicycles from 1916 or 2016, hosted by Richard Lynch, RichardKnows& ILoveLimerick.com
Family music, games, entertainment and refreshments
Elite Cycle Trials rider Sean Putt, said he’s looking forward to bringing the ‘cycle trials’ event to life, the first of its kind in Ireland.
“The event will include three competitive classes, Expert, Intermediate and Beginner, there will be a Novis class for anyone wishing to give cycle trials a go for the very first time on the day,” he said. “The event is being supported by Cycling Ireland, The Hub Bike Shop, National Bike Week, Limerick City and County Council as well as Limerick Smarter Travel. Trophies and prizes for winners will be sponsored by The Hub. We will also be having a ‘cycle trials taster session’ at ‘The Hub’ bike shop on June 5th part of The Hub’s Sean Kelly Charity Cycle and Family BBQ, do come along to get some one-to-one trials advice, to have a practice trial, or to pre-register for the trials competition on the 12th June,” he added.
Speaking following today’s announcement, Richard Lynch, said: “Between the 11th and 19th of June there are a wide variety of BeSPOKE events taking place across Limerick, a celebration and promotion of all that’s great about bikes and cycling, there really is something for everyone. Find out whats happening near you and your family. The ‘Riverside Family Cycle’ and ‘Party in the Park’ will form part of the State Centenary Programme to remember 1916, reflect on the republic 100 years on and reimagine our shared future. The cycle and party will have a 1916|2016 theme and include a ‘Best in Show’ competition, with judges and prizes for those entering their outfits/bicycles in the 1916 or 2016 categories. Do dress up, take part and have fun with friends and family! ” he added.
Donal Brennan, Senior Engineer, Limerick City and County Council commented: We hope to see as many people as possible out and about on their bikes enjoyed the fun-filled week of events during Limerick’s Cycling Festival. The BeSPOKE 2016 events form a very important time in our annual calendar, working with the Limerick community to creatively highlight the positives of cycling not just for recreation but as an integral part of each persons daily travel routine.”
For further information:
Web: Search ‘BeSPOKE’ at www.LimerickSmarterTravel.ie
Lolas Ball, an evening to remember Lola Jane Nagle took place this past Saturday in the Greenhills Hotel in aid of ACT for Meningitis. Richard Lynch of I Love Limerick was honoured to host the event with his good friend Leanne Moore and the night was very emotional, filled with love and a huge success!
On April 15 last year one family’s whole world was turned upside down when they tragically and suddenly lost their precious little girl Lola, aged just 17 months, to meningitis. Nothing could have prepared them for the devastation that losing a child would cause. Since then the family have worked tirelessly to prevent another family from going through their nightmare. Lola’s family wants to ensure that no one faces the meningitis journey alone.
Last June, an unbelievable crowd gathered today the AllStar Ink tattoo parlour, in Limerick City, for a Lola Nagle ACT for Meningitis Fundraiser. €19,924.28 was raised after a number of people donated money, or paid to get butterfly tattoos, in aid of the ACT for Meningitis organisation.
“We never thought meningitis would affect us but it did,” says event organiser and Lolas sister, the inspirational 17 year old Leah Melling. “We organised this ball to remember our beautiful little butterfly Lola, and to raise funds, but also to raise awareness of Meningitis because knowing the signs and symptoms may just save a life. We have been overwhelmed by the support we have received from the people of Limerick.”
ACT for Meningitis is a national meningitis support and awareness charity based in Galway. Set up in 2011 by Siobhan and Noel Carroll following the loss of their 4-year-old daughter Aoibhe to this devastating disease. ACT for Meningitis aims to raise awareness, promote education and provide free support to anyone in Ireland affected by meningitis.
Entertainment was provided by Voice of Ireland contestant Niall O’ Halloran, Ciara Meade, lead singer of the well-known Limerick band Funk Junkies, MizDrea, Tiny Giants and upcoming singer songwriter Aaron Hackett, magician Steve Spade and comedienne Al Foran. Guests then danced the night away with DJs Ian McLoughlin and Party Marty.
People, who did not attend the ball, can still make a difference and offer their support to ACT for Meningitis.
Support Act for Meningitis here
Find Lolas Ball on Facebook
Read more on the I Love Limerick site here
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