2nd Annual 3 Town Charity Cycle & BBQ

The 2nd Annual 3 Town Charity Cycle took place on Saturday 19th July 2014, and what a day it was. With the registration taking place at 11am, it didn’t take long for the car park at The Birchgrove Bar to fill with cyclists, Garda marshals, stewards, medics, supporters and volunteers of all kinds. There was a fantastic atmosphere leading up to the start of the cycle and just prior to the start of the event, it was announced that we had 125 cyclists, that’s almost double what we had last year. A fantastic turn out!!!

The crowd is begining to gather

The crowd is begining to gather

With the big cycle starting first, and the short cycle following not long after, the event got under way to a rapturous applause from all supporters. When we reached Portumna, we were greeted by the Portumna Mens Shed who gave us a very warm welcome, which we really appreciated, and we had a few cyclists join us from there also.

Members of Portumna Mens Shed with Fionnbar Walsh and Arthur Carr

Members of Portumna Mens Shed with Fionnbar Walsh and Arthur Carr

By 6pm nearly all the cyclists had arrived back to The Birchgrove, some a little more wet and tired than others, but everyone of them had said that the really enjoyed the day, one cyclist said:

“I haven’t sat on a bicycle in quite a few years but I loved every bit of it – Bring on next year!”

The Night that followed was amazing, the BBQ was in full flight and the food was great, people were laughing, joking and having a good time, the music and entertainment was brilliant, we really couldn’t have asked for things to have been any better.

Birchgrove 1

Birchgrove 1

Civil Defence Members Mark Callanan and Lisa Kelly enjoying the day with their family

Civil Defence Members Mark Callanan and Lisa Kelly enjoying the day with their family

By the time we got to the stage for the raffle for the big prize of the bicycle and for the other prizes we had sold almost all of the tickets available which again was a fantastic result.

Bike

Bike

The winner of the main prize of the bicycle and helmet, supplied by Barry Taylor Ballinasloe, was Mrs Marie Green, a local lady who bought her ticket in The Birchgrove Bar on the night. We would like to congratulate Marie and all of our prize winners and thank them all for showing us their support.

In the days that followed there was a lot of counting and double counting done to work out how much had been raised.

The final figure was……………….. €7,745!!!!

This is an amazing figure and again is over double from what we raised last year. This wouldn’t have been possible if it wasn’t for the people of Ballinasloe and the surrounding area getting together to show their support for us and our cause…..we cannot thank you all enough.

Group Photo at the 2013 cycle outside The Birchgrove

Group Photo at the 2013 cycle outside The Birchgrove

A special mention has to go to P.J. O’Connor and his family and staff in The Birchgrove Bar, we would not have been able to hold such a special event if it wasn’t for them and all their help, we look forward to seeing you all at our 3rd Annual Cycle next year! Thank you!!

We also need to thank Elma and Fionnbar Walsh, who travelled up from Kerry, along with some friends of theirs, to be with us and join us on our cycle, this was a huge honour for us, and we hope to see them again soon.

Deborah and Arthur Carr with Elma and Fionnbar Walsh

Deborah and Arthur Carr with Elma and Fionnbar Walsh

We plan on having our next 3 Town Charity Cycle on July 18th 2015 so everybody get this into your diary and get into training!

Group photo of 2014 cycle - Photo supplied by Gerry Strong Photography Ballinasloe

Group photo of 2014 cycle – Photo supplied by Gerry Stronge Photography Ballinasloe

We need to say thank also to all that sponsored us, the generosity that the businesses and people of Ballinasloe and the surrounding area showed us, was immense and we are very greatful!

More pictures of the day can be found in our gallery

Once again this has been a fantastic experiance which was only made possible by all of you…..the people so THANK YOU EVERYBODY for your continued support!

SPONSERS

The Birchgrove Bar, Barry’s Cycles, Easy Fix Rubber, Tom Fox, Tom Keane, Dunnes Garage, The Carlton Shearwater Hotel, The Kingfisher Gym, Kellers of Ballinasloe, Garbally Oil, Utah, Dubarry, Ballinasloe Golf Club, Cahalans Jewelers, Domac Plant Hire, Portumna Golf Course, Gibbons Pillar House, Brodericks Pharmacy, Naughtons Garage, Hubert Dolan, Haydens Hotel, Fletchers of Ballinasloe, Utopia Hair, Signs & Systems, Frank Kelly Motor Factors, Chris Daly Shoes, Moycarn, Michael Ward, Kariba, Unique Style Hair, Donnellys Florist, Healys Pharmacy, The Emerald Bar, Joes Bar, Dolans Garage, Downeys Bar, Grenhams Off-Licence, Noel Mannion, Babyworld Athlone, Seerys Cash & Carry, Costcutter, Gerry Stronge, Canning Hurleys, Sean Hogarty, Tesco, The Bread Basket, Supermacs, O’Connors Food Hall, Tony Carrol, Mal CroffySean Connolly and Gullanes Hotel.

Special Guest For Our Charity Cycle

GELS are delighted to announce that we have a special guest taking part in our 3 Town Charity Cycle on Saturday July 19th. Elma Walsh, mother of the late Donal Walsh, has confirmed that she will be coming to Ballinasloe to take part in the 22km cycle.

Back in December 2013 both Elma and Fionnbar Walsh, came to Ballinasloe for our poster launch in Gullanes Hotel and after a very successful evening they said:

 “if there is anything we can do for you in the future just ask and we will do our best to help”

After a chance meeting with Fionnbar as he was passing through Ballinasloe last month, he learned of our cycle and without any hesitation Elma said thet she would do the cycle with us.

We are truly delighted to have Elma join us for this event.

Fionnbar Walsh, Arthur Carr, Maura Canning,  Elma Walsh and Gerry Roach

Fionnbar Walsh, Arthur Carr, Maura Canning, Elma Walsh and Gerry Roach

The evenings entertainment following the cycle in The Birchgrove Bar will be:

  • 3 live music acts both indoors and outdoors,

DJ-Keith Geraghty 5pm-7pm, Macey South 7pm-9pm, Steven Blake 9pm-finish

  • BBQ,
  • Raffle
  • An auction for some fantastic prizes.

All cyclists get a free BBQ after the cycle, a medal and all under 16s get a certificate of participation aswell.

Also we need to thank Pearses GAA Club who have opened their facilities for all the cyclists to shower and change afterwards.

For those that have not yet seen the route of the 22km cycle here it is:

The map for the small cycle

The map for the small cycle

Dont forget though, for the more serious cyclists we have the 101km via Portumna and Loughrea.

The route for the 101km cycle - via Portumna, Abbey, Loughrea and Aughrim

The route for the 101km cycle – via Portumna, Abbey, Loughrea and Aughrim

This is going to be a FAMILY, FUN ORIENTATED DAY OUT and with this in mind we would encourage everybody to come out, bring all your family and friends, enjoy a short cycle and have a great day out with some great company.

Group Photo at the 2013 cycle outside The Birchgrove

Group Photo at the 2013 cycle outside The Birchgrove