The inaugural Oughterard Tug of War Competition and Family Fun Day raised over €20,000 in aid of Galway Hospice this summer.
Held on June 12 in the Corribdale grounds in Oughterard, the event took place in memory of the late Paddy Molloy from the village.
The aim of the event was to have fun with a traditional sport of Tug of War while generating much needed funds for Galway Hospice as they continue to deliver excellent palliative care both in the hospice and in the wider community.
The voluntary group which included Peter Tierney, Mary Molloy and Johnny Smith along with volunteers from across Oughterard Parish transformed Corribdale and the Oughterard Show Grounds into a fun themed park for the entire day.
“The Galway Hospice plays a huge role in our community as unfortunately cancer affects every family at some stage and we as a group of volunteers have been affected especially with the death of the late Paddy Molloy,” Mary Molloy said.
“The care and service provided by the Galway Hospice was of the utmost support, while critical, it was delivered in a professional, kind and dignified way which was such a help to the family.”
“We wanted to give something back to Galway Hospice and rejuvenating traditional sports like the Oughterard Tug of War is our way of showing our appreciation personally, and as a community.”
Teams of all age groups from young children to teenagers, adult men and women from across Connemara, Galway, the west of Ireland, and even the UK, competed in the novel Tug of War Competitions.
Needless to say there was plenty laughter and fun but also the serious side of the sport was shown.
In addition to the Tug of War, there was plenty of entertainment for all of the family, with face painting, and visiting sports stars including the legends of the Oughterard All Ireland Winning Intermediate Team, Galway County Team and many more besides, and of course live music.
A Penalty Shoot out Competition, and other fun activities were held and all of which gave the Tug of War Competition a carnival and festival like atmosphere.
The organisers also brought the poignancy of the event in aid of Galway Hospice into focus as they dedicated the day to local man Paddy Molloy.
A memory tree in his honour and for all those from the community who died from cancer was erected and hundreds of messages to loved ones lost to cancer adorned its branches.
The substantial fund of €20,408 from the days events came from team registrations for the much coveted Tug of War Competitions and from the generous donations on the gate.
The organisers thanked everyone who made the day such a success. The response was so great that the Tug of War and Family Fun Day is now set to become an annual event.