Experience Gaelic Games http://www.experiencegaelicgames.com Experience Irish Culture in a whole new way! Wed, 30 Nov 2016 13:36:52 +0000 en-GB hourly 1 Ideal Stag Party activity in Ireland- Dublin, Galway or Cork http://www.experiencegaelicgames.com/stag-party-ireland/ http://www.experiencegaelicgames.com/stag-party-ireland/#respond Wed, 30 Nov 2016 13:36:52 +0000 http://www.experiencegaelicgames.com/?p=6688 A Stag Party Love Affair Via Gaelic Sport Heading to Dublin/Galway or Cork for your stag party? Then look no further than Experience Gaelic Games. We will take care of your last weekend of freedom that will set you on a love affair through Irish sporting culture. The magical thing about Experience Gaelic Games is...

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A Stag Party Love Affair Via Gaelic Sport

Heading to Dublin/Galway or Cork for your stag party? Then look no further than Experience Gaelic Games. We will take care of your last weekend of freedom that will set you on a love affair through Irish sporting culture.

Ideal Stag party activity in Dublin

Clowning around at the ideal stag party activity in Dublin

The magical thing about Experience Gaelic Games is that it offers a stag party the opportunity to sample Gaelic sport through the games of Hurling, Gaelic Football and Gaelic Handball. All age groups and participation levels are catered for. Over the years, we have become accustomed to greeting up to three generations in the same stag or hen party.

 

For One And All

Fathers, mums, grandparents, great grandparents, in-laws and outlaws have all immersed themselves in the delights of Gaelic games in some memorable stag party sessions at our Dublin/Galway and Cork bases. It’s an ideal way to gel the families together; while it may also be an opportunity to sort out any cross-family tensions particularly over the course of a hurling match.

If you’re the sporty type that is hot blooded when it comes to competitive games with your mates or family; it’s an ideal blow out session for you. You can test yourself against your mates to see who can last the longest. The fittest challenge. An endurance test. But do pace yourself as there are three games to contend with.

After a brief introduction to the history of Gaelic games you will be whisked away by your coaches to an alley. All great things happen in alleys in Ireland! It is where the sport of Gaelic Handball is hidden from the rest of the world.

Gaelic Handball is a nice opener to your session. It can be what you want it to be. Nice and peaceful like your Saturday morning game of tennis at the lawn club or a passionate battle to show your mates who’s best. It requires a steady and quick feet, durable energy and wits. All things that you’d expect to find in a hen or stag group particularly on a Saturday morning! Gaelic handball will keep you on your toes and boil your passion for the two Gaelic sports that lay ahead.

Great Gameplaying

Great Stag party activity Hurling

Stag party with the perfect stag activity in Ireland – Hurling

After your exploits in the alley you will be ushered into outside pastures and into the open air to immerse yourself in Gaelic Football. A mixture of Basketball, Rugby, Soccer, Volleyball and when it gets hot and heavy Martial Arts! Once again Gaelic Football is inclusive; you will need to work as a team to get through the various skill competitions that may looks quite simple on TV but will require a bit of thinking when you’re out on your own with a ball in your hand and excitement has reached fever pitch! It is the essential simple game, often played by simple people. Ideal for game playing at stag parties. First drinks at the bar to be bought by the losing team!

The jewel in the crown for your stag party is the ancient game of Hurling. How often are you let loose in Ireland with a stick in your hand; with your in-laws on the opposing side! This is the game that has left many a stag or hen in awe. That’s saying something if their planning to walk down the aisle! It leaves you with an appreciation of an ancient culture that still exhorts pride and passion on daily basis throughout the Gaelic world.

You won’t be disappointed with a stag party session at Experience Gaelic Games. It is a great way to sign of single life; get to know your in-laws and even find out things about your own kit and kin that you didn’t know exist. It has all happened before. Why not sample it for yourself.

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Corporate Team Building – Our New Video http://www.experiencegaelicgames.com/corporate-team-building-new-video/ http://www.experiencegaelicgames.com/corporate-team-building-new-video/#respond Mon, 28 Nov 2016 17:52:38 +0000 http://www.experiencegaelicgames.com/?p=6681 Our New Corporate Team Building Video By Cormac Ó Donnchú We’re delighted to release our new Corporate Team Building video. It’s been a while in the planning and making. The final finished Corporate Team Building video has been delivered by our creative intern, Jeremy Partyka who we think you’ll be seeing a lot more of very soon....

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Our New Corporate Team Building Video
By Cormac Ó Donnchú
Experience Gaelic Games Team Building Briefing room Dublin

Experience Gaelic Games Team Building Briefing room Dublin

We’re delighted to release our new Corporate Team Building video.

It’s been a while in the planning and making. The final finished Corporate Team Building video has been delivered by our creative intern, Jeremy Partyka who we think you’ll be seeing a lot more of very soon. – Jeremy has been with us for a short semester as he finished his studies in the art of movie making.

It’s hard to believe that it’s over six years since we started off on this journey of discovery with Experience Gaelic Games.  When we started we were fully focussed on delivering our cultural insights to international leisure visitors. Corporate team building was not an area we were thinking too much of.

Then our clients taught us a valuable lesson. It’s they who decide what works for them!  Corporate visitors like Volito and SMBC Aviation sought us out and asked us to work with them. We had a great time on and off site in places as diverse as Druids Glen and BrookLodge in Wickow, Farnham House in Cavan, Marqueree Castle in Sligo, even on the hallowed turf of our own glorious Croke Park and many other places inbetween!

So now Corporate team building is a vital part of what we do -over the last few months we’ve been delighted to have worked with stellar Tech companies like Google, Dropbox, Linked-in, Airbnb, Microsoft – and corporate giants of Mainland Europe – Kelloggs, Allergan, Carrefour, Novartis, Europcar, Germany’s FA, Total Gaz and even FIA -the organisers of Formula 1!

We’ve learned that warrior sport of hurling has one of the oldest track records as a corporate team building activity – we’re proud to carry part of that tradition into the twenty first century!

So if your colleagues can stand together and face a warrior challenge with bigs sticks – then day to day corporate challenges should not be an issue!!

So go on – book your corporate challenge now and to celebrate the end of 2016 we’ll offer you a 10% discount on bookings before Dec 31st! Just quote code of corp16!

 

 

 

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Goals Galore in Gaelic Games – A sporting reason to Visit Ireland! http://www.experiencegaelicgames.com/sporting-reason-visit-ireland/ http://www.experiencegaelicgames.com/sporting-reason-visit-ireland/#respond Thu, 24 Nov 2016 16:06:37 +0000 http://www.experiencegaelicgames.com/?p=6674   by Brian G. O’Sullivan Last Tuesday night Borussia Dortmund and Legia Warsaw set a Champions League record for the most goals scored in a single game. The twelve goals netted in a scoring frenzy set eyebrows rising across the sporting world. It was fast, free flowing end to end fanfare which will go down...

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by Brian G. O’Sullivan

Last Tuesday night Borussia Dortmund and Legia Warsaw set a Champions League record for the most goals scored in a single game. The twelve goals netted in a scoring frenzy set eyebrows rising across the sporting world. It was fast, free flowing end to end fanfare which will go down in the annuals as one of the most bizarre games in the competition due to the manner in which it was played out.

Fast, free flowing end to end action is the norm within Hurling and Gaelic Football. When you visit Ireland a session with Experience Gaelic Games will demonstrate to you the attributes needed to play two of the world’s most demanding games. Not only do you have to be physically able to be at your best you have to be mentally sound too. The demands of quick thinking often change the course of a game. Especially when a ball can travel at 180km per hour in the game of hurling!

High Scoring

There is one thing that you are certain of if you happen to visit Ireland and find yourself at a Gaelic Football or Hurling match. It won’t finish nil-all. You are guaranteed scores; if the teams are of high quality you are guaranteed lots of scores. There will be lots of thrills and crunch defending too. Goals particularly excite the crowd. They are worth three points and often open up tightly fought encounters. Scores over the bar give your side one point. It is the most common score in the Gaelic world; often referred to as a pint!

The 2016 All-Ireland Hurling final produced fifty-three scores over the course of seventy minutes. In total four goals and fifty-three points were registered in a fast free flowing battle between age old rivals Tipperary and Kilkenny. Despite having a fierce rivalry not one player was cautioned during the course of the game.

The Game of Hurling a reason in itself to Visit Ireland - The oldest and fastest game on Grass.

The Game of Hurling – The oldest and fastest game on Grass.

In former years goalmouth tussles in both Hurling and Gaelic Football were the stuff of legend. Today a small box, known as a parallelogram, offers the goalkeeper protection. You are not allowed to tackle the keeper within its confines nor are you allowed to be inside it before the ball enters. There was a time when the goalkeeper could be charged into the net with or without the ball. It coloured a great spectacle in an era long before the internet or television.

Hell’s Kitchen

With such gamesmanship, goal scoring was naturally high. Anything up to fourteen or fifteen goals in a match was not unusual. Defences that kept a clean sheet were heralded as superstars. Tipperarys timed honoured defence of the 1950s and 60s were christened Hell’s Kitchen for the exploits in keeping attackers at bay.

Their neighbours, Waterford, felt the full rigors of their prowess. They had one notable revenge. It came after the 1959 League decider when Hell’s Kitchen held the Waterford attack at bay in a comfortable victory. They met again, three weeks later in the Championship, knockout do or die battle fare, when Waterford gained sweat revenge scoring eight first half goals. It became known as the day the kitchen went on fire.

If you want to sample the spirit of Hell’s Kitchen or fancy yourself as an attacking dynamo why not visit Ireland and try your hand at Hurling or Gaelic Football through a session at Experience Gaelic Games! It’s an ideal activity for visiting sports or family groups including Stag and Hen groups coming to Ireland.

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Take a new look at Dublin – Love Adventure Dublin http://www.experiencegaelicgames.com/dublin-love-adventure-dublin/ http://www.experiencegaelicgames.com/dublin-love-adventure-dublin/#respond Wed, 23 Nov 2016 11:09:23 +0000 http://www.experiencegaelicgames.com/?p=6647 Adventure Dublin- Launched We’re very proud to be at the forefront, along with a range of friends and colleagues, of a group who have formed a cooperative called Adventure Dublin. We’re all passionate about our little city and the outdoors. We’re also passionate about how the city is viewed and experienced by you – our guests....

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Adventure Dublin- Launched
adventure-dublin-logo-with-cta

Adventure Dublin

We’re very proud to be at the forefront, along with a range of friends and colleagues, of a group who have formed a cooperative called Adventure Dublin. We’re all passionate about our little city and the outdoors. We’re also passionate about how the city is viewed and experienced by you – our guests. Sometimes we feel the city appears attractive but a little one dimensional.

Our mission is to challenge the international perception of Dublin – we want to communicate that as well as partying in Dublin – it’s now really the Weekend Adventure Capital of Europe!

So with the support of our wonderful National Tourist Board – Fáilte Ireland – we’re now up and running with a brand new website to make it easier to Adventure In Dublin –  www.adventuredubin.com

So when you click on AdventureDublin.com you’ll find approx 15 different wonderful and weird (!) activities to enjoy while in Dublin.

You can sample Kite Surfing on the Strand with Francois – Biking in the city with Hugh or Julian or Horse Riding in the Hills with Will, Wakeboarding  with Nina in the heart of the city and lots more!

So now we say to the world – Don’t just come to party and stay with us – get to know us better and come play with us! It’s much more fun.

To celebrate the launch we visited a few of our friends and took our hurls with us – We love sharing the uniqueness of Gaelic culture with visitors – especially our ancient warrior sport of Hurling. We also love to bring it wherever there’s fun to be had and is there fun to be had with Adventure Dublin?

Watch the video below and you decide!

Hope you like it enough to book your 2017 weekend in Dublin – if you’re planning to do so just contact us and we’ll arrange a very special welcome from Adventure Dublin for you!

 

#lovedublin Tourism Ireland #indigenousculture Official GAA

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Rugby World Cup Bid 2023 – A Gaelic Connection http://www.experiencegaelicgames.com/rugby-world-cup-bid-2023/ http://www.experiencegaelicgames.com/rugby-world-cup-bid-2023/#respond Thu, 17 Nov 2016 12:22:18 +0000 http://www.experiencegaelicgames.com/?p=6640 In Gaelic Houses; Rugby World Cup – 2023 – We’re Ready for The World! Brian G. O’Sullivan Ireland is bracing itself. The form has been sent in; the plan is ready to be implemented. The stage is getting set. Let’s be having you. Rugby World Cup – Ireland 2023; in the heart of Gaelic Games....

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In Gaelic Houses; Rugby World Cup – 2023 – We’re Ready for The World!

Brian G. O’Sullivan

Ireland is bracing itself. The form has been sent in; the plan is ready to be implemented. The stage is getting set. Let’s be having you. Rugby World Cup – Ireland 2023; in the heart of Gaelic Games.

While the Rugby World Cup 2023 is a distance cloud in the winter of 2016; we at Experience Gaelic Games have long being introducing Rugby teams from across the globe to our native sporting culture. In fact one of the first to feel the warmth of our nations sporting culture was the Fijian Rugby team – it was one step on their Olympic Gold success in 2016.

Brightening Our Doorstep

The English, Welsh, Scottish, and French have been brightening our doorstep at Experience Gaelic Games in anticipation of 2023 for a number of years.

Rugby Schools, Universities, Clubs and Societies have all sampled the delights of Gaelic Games. The majority return on annual basis; to perfect the skills of Gaelic Football – we are told line-outs and Garryowen’s are now becoming faultless due to the attributes picked up from Gaelic Football. A mere coincidence we think!

18 November 2009; Fijian-born Cork hurling star, Seán Óg Ó hAilpín, with members of the Fijian team on a visit to the Fijian Rugby team at its camp in Dublin. The rugby players were treated to a hurling skills session with one of the biggest names in Gaelic games, courtesy of Digicel who are sponsoring the Fijians’ trip to Ireland. Speaking after today’s coaching session, Ó hAilpín said: “Today was a great opportunity for me to show visitors to Ireland what Gaelic games are all about. I was born in Fiji and lived there until I was three, so I’m delighted that Digicel was able to organize this coaching session.” The Fijians play Ireland in the RDS on Saturday, November 21st, in the RDS. Kick off is at 17.15. A limited number of tickets are still available from the Spar shop in Donnybrook. Radisson Blu St Helens Hotel, Stillorgan Road, Dublin. Picture credit: Brendan Moran / SPORTSFILE *** NO REPRODUCTION FEE ***

 Fijian-born Cork hurling star, Seán Óg Ó hAilpín, with members of the Fijian team on a visit to the Fijian Rugby team at its camp in Dublin. Picture credit: Brendan Moran / SPORTSFILE 

It is not just the Europeans that have been knocking on our door. A week doesn’t pass

 

at Experience Gaelic Games in Dublin, Galway or Cork that we don’t encounter a Rugby team from across the world. Touring teams from South Africa, Tonga, Zimbabwe, USA, Canada, Uruguay and even Brazil have coupled Gaelic Games into their itinerary. And immersed themselves in Irish sporting culture.

The Houses The Gaelic World Built

While the present Rugby grounds of The Aviva Stadium and RDS in Dublin along with Belfast’s Kingspan-Ravenhill and Limericks Thomand Park are included in the bid; it is the Gaelic grounds that have generated the most interest.

Croke Park -

Croke Park – HQ for the GAA and Europes Third Largest Sports Stadium

The most famous is Dublin’s Croke Park; a stadia that witnessed arguably the most emotional day in Irish sport since Italia 90; when they staged England at GAA HQ in 2007. Ireland being England’s nearest colony naturally had turbulent relations with the English; which led to many wars and conflicts between the two nations. That game buried a lot of tension both real and imaginary; and remarkably opened the link between Rugby and Gaelic Games in a lot of areas where the game was extinct since the foundation of the GAA in 1884.

Gaelic Heartlands

Also included is Kilkenny’s Nowlan Park where Bruce Springsteen once famously played; on the same turf as the aristocrats of Hurling. The marble city treasures the most successful Hurling heartland on the planet. The Cats are to Hurling what the All Blacks are to the oval ball.

Into the west is Galway’s Pearse Stadium who are bidding to host the most westerly World Cup game in the annuals of the competition. The cities scenic beauty will leave you in awe. And don’t be fooled when they tell you the next parish is New York if you happen to lose your way to the ground!

Just north of Galway is McHale Park, Castlebar, home of Mayo GAA. A county that suffered most in terms of emigration, Mayo boasts the biggest overseas support base for an amateur team anywhere in the world. Their quest for a first All-Ireland Gaelic Football title since 1951 is the stuff of fairy lore.

Different Cultures Twined Together

Further north is Derrys Gaelic Park, a city vast in history, sport and culture. A city that has two names – Derry to the Irish and Londonderry to those who came in Ulster plantation of the 1600’s. Belfast is a city that has grown in stature since the Northern Ireland conflict concluded in the mid-nineties. Like Derry it is buzzing with history, sport and culture. Its GAA showground Casement Park is undergoing a major redevelopment in time for the Rugby World Cup 2023. The World Cup proposal demonstrates how relations between two communities have been harnessed together in a relatively short space of time.

To the south lies the Killarney’s Fitzgerald Stadium and Cork City’s Pairc Ui Chiomah. To the interlopers of Gaelic Games these two stadiums bear witness to the biggest rivalry in Gaelic Football on an annual basis. Its Manchester United v City, Texas Long Horns v A&M, or India v Pakistan. Its tribal warfare – the Munster Football final is to them what the Ashes are to the English or the Aussies. Being close neighbours the intermarriage between both counties has seen many a man go hungry due to his loyalty to his county colours. As they say in these parts – it’s pure sport boi! You will also have a new found appreciation for the English Language, and a different perspective on sporting culture, after a visit to Cork or Killarney – or any Gaelic Heartland for that matter.

Familiarise Yourself With The Gaelic World

It is less than seven years before the first ball is send into play for the Rugby World Cup 2023 . The judging commences in the weeks ahead. So why not familiarise yourself with the Gaelic world before 2023; by sampling the power and passion of Gaelic Games via a session with us at Experience Gaelic Games.

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Authentic Dublin Tips http://www.experiencegaelicgames.com/authentic-dublin-tips-study-abroad-student/ http://www.experiencegaelicgames.com/authentic-dublin-tips-study-abroad-student/#respond Mon, 14 Nov 2016 15:26:24 +0000 http://www.experiencegaelicgames.com/?p=6631 Tips for immersing yourself – Authentic Dublin by Jeff Zeleny When I came to Dublin on my study abroad program, I looked forward to the Guinness tour. I was excited for the Cliffs of Moher, the political taxi tour, and even the Giant’s Causeway. Although Grafton Street shopping can have us window shopping for hours, the...

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Tips for immersing yourself – Authentic Dublin
by Jeff Zeleny

When I came to Dublin on my study abroad program, I looked forward to the Guinness tour. I was excited for the Cliffs of Moher, the political taxi tour, and even the Giant’s Causeway. Although Grafton Street shopping can have us window shopping for hours, the authentic Dublin experience lies deeper than these tourist attractions. As we have all heard before, progress comes by stepping out of your comfort zone. These few tips can help you turn your semester or journey abroad into an Authentic Dublin trip that you will not want to leave.

Go to the pub – By Yourself

Authentic Dublin Pub - Peadar Kearney's

Peadar Kearney’s Pub – Named after author of Irish National Anthem

Many times we can be stuck to our friend groups that are close to us. During our semester abroad we will go out with these guys and experience the pub culture. Not saying that going out with your friends is bad, but it will be tough to have a genuine conversation with a local. My first Day in Dublin, although I was jet lagged, I went out to get my first pint of Guinness. Not having any sense of where I am, 4 hours after I get off the plane, I found myself in Peadar Kearney’s on Dame Street. It was about noon time and I sat down at the bar and ordered a Guinness. Some older gentlemen turned to me and asked if I had class today. We started talking and he told me just about everything I need to do in Dublin. He told me about the obvious hop-on hop-off bus tours, as well as the areas not to go at night. He showed me what slagging was as he made fun of the ridiculous election happening in the states. Within my first day I already was talking with locals and finding out more about the city. It took a little bit of the adventure gene in me, but I was able to get the authentic Dublin experience. Although my mom told me to always have a buddy, it’s nice to get out and meet some locals.

Go to a match – Experience the Culture

Authentic Dublin Culture - The Dubs in Croke Park

Gaelic Games – The heart beat of Modern Ireland

When I heard of Gaelic games, I did not have any clue what they were about. I had to watch YouTube videos to understand how it is played. In September, there are the all-Ireland finals that take place at Croke Park in Dublin. Although getting tickets is near impossible, the area around the pitch is booming with fans. If you are not in Dublin during the months of September, check out some of the local clubs playing at Parnell Park. Meet some of the members of the club, and who knows, maybe you’ll be interested in playing for a team. These are the native sports of Ireland, and this is one of the best ways to immerse yourself culturally. Understanding the history and timeline that the Gaelic Athletic Association underwent, is just another part of being a member. If you have the opportunity, take advantage. Join the community behind these authentic Dublin clubs and go see a match or two.

Join a Club – Any Club

We all have our certain interests in life. Whether it be ping pong or astronomy club, you can find one that fits you in Dublin. UCD, NCAD, and NCID all offer various clubs that promote students to just get out and have a good bit of craic. One night there was a collaboration between Champlain College and NCAD. It was a pizza party that introduced us to the NCAD campus which was just a short walk from our apartments. Not many kids showed out for the party, much less stayed after the pizza was gone. A buddy and I were roaming around the college talking to students when one of them suggested making some paper at the end of the hall. We strolled through the hall and came up on the paper making society. Having no clue that we didn’t go to the school, we participated and learned how to make paper using cotton pulp. Just about every week since then, we have gone to the society and have made some great friends from it. Although it was a bit awkward when they found out we do not attend class there, they still accepted us. Meeting other students and getting immersed in a club gave me the authentic Dublin vibes.

 

Dublin Small City - Big Heart!

Dublin Small City – Big Heart!

As much as I love to be a tourist, I like to become a local as well. Knowing my way around the city, as well as knowing the people in it. Authentic Dublin has been wonderful because I have not been afraid to immerse myself. Some students who go to class and back to the apartment are not getting the full authentic Dublin experience. Talking to the cashier at Lidl does not count as immersing yourself. Break out of your comfort zone, and go make the most of your time abroad. Many students don’t get this opportunity, so it’s up to you to make the most of it.
Jeff Zeleny

 

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American Study Abroad Student Lost & Found in Dublin! – Jeff’s Story http://www.experiencegaelicgames.com/american-student-lost-found-dublin-jeffs-story/ http://www.experiencegaelicgames.com/american-student-lost-found-dublin-jeffs-story/#respond Mon, 07 Nov 2016 13:49:39 +0000 http://www.experiencegaelicgames.com/?p=6620 An American Experience of Study Abroad When I took the opportunity to study abroad in Dublin, I did not know what I was getting myself into. I was always accustomed to driving to class and wide open roads with trees on either sides winding through the hills of the northeast. Visiting New York and Boston...

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An American Experience of Study Abroad

When I took the opportunity to study abroad in Dublin, I did not know what I was getting myself into. I was always accustomed to driving to class and wide open roads with trees on either sides winding through the hills of the northeast. Visiting New York and Boston was always fascinating to me because of the hustle and bustle of the city. Where do you find time to relax? This is my first time living in a city and walking and taking the bus took some time to get accustomed to. I was nervous to be in an unfamiliar place with a different culture. When I was dropped at the apartments I was right in the heart of the city. I did not see the farmlands and wide open pastures I expected. The first week in Dublin was amazing, I was able to have my first pint of Guinness, as well get a sense of direction within the town. Study abroad classes started and I was in the full swing of things. As a study abroad group, we have visited the Cliffs of Moher, as well as Belfast and the Giant’s Causeway. We took a hike up bray head on a beautiful sunny afternoon, and I’ve even gone to Lisbon Portugal with friends. As interesting as this all was, the best part of my study abroad time has been working with Experience Gaelic Games.

jeff-in-bray

Treking across Bray Head – just 30 Mins from Dublin – Look closely that’s me on the Ridge!

Having a sports background, as well playing rugby in high school, I landed a study abroad internship at Experience Gaelic games. After working in a local toy store, this proved to be an amazing opportunity. I have a chance to work with a global company that deals with groups from all over the world. When I first arrived at Na Fianna, I did not fully understand what the club was there for. I wondered as well what was the Gaelic Athletic Association overall. The morning group filled the introduction area as my attention was drawn to Cormac. The explanation from Cormac of the games was a turning point to my interest with the games.

Since 1884 the games have been played across Ireland promoting the idea of community within your club. The pride and honor that comes with playing for your club, and even furthermore your county side was an appealing aspect of the game. I was not surprised to hear that these athletes train just as hard as any other professional athletes, but they all have their day jobs. There is no compensation for dedicating your life to the game. It quickly became apparent through the athletes at EGG that these sports are not just sports, but a way of life.

2016-final

2016 All Ireland Football Final – An amazing insight into Irish Life and Culture

When the athletes at Experience Gaelic Games were talking about the all-Ireland finals, I was curious to what this entailed. They suggested I go to Quinn’s Pub on Drumcondra road to watch the match. My second week in Dublin, I was still new to the town and had never been near Croke park, but have heard amazing things. The pub was packed with fans who couldn’t get tickets to the game, and the atmosphere was eccentric. The fans were dressed in their team’s colors with face painting and crazy wigs. I was amazed to see the turnout to just one of the pubs and how many people cared about these matches. Not only was this a native sport to Ireland, it was the sport most communities cared for. After watching my first hurling match I was hooked. I continued to watch all of the finals games between the weeks in September. Walking out of my apartment on the 17th, the whole town was covered in blue. I saw caravans of horse and carriages with fans screaming the “boys in blue” song.

 

After September and the first day in October, I completely stopped watching American football and Soccer overall. I was immersed in the culture behind the games and did not want to stop there. When the all-Ireland finals were over I did not know where I would see another match. I quickly picked up on the club championships and went to see my first live hurling match at Parnell Park. I was able to learn the game even better, understanding the skills and penalties that all groups learn at Experience Gaelic Games, and applying them to a real time game.

I watched colleagues at work battle it out on the pitch, playing in the games that they demonstrate daily to groups at Experience Gaelic Games. An amazing rush of happiness came over me when watching the Na Fianna Senior hurlers duke it out against O’Tooles. This sense of pride within the club was a feeling I got to experience firsthand cheering for my team. Throughout my time with Experience Gaelic Games, I have felt like I am a part of the team myself. Being around for all the jokes and great craic the guys have about their weekends, as well walking through the doors to one of the most well established clubs in all of Ireland. The sense of community that these games brought about is something that I suggest everybody to try.

Study Abroad - or study on board?

Kayaking on the River Liffey – with the Dubs banner in the background

Throughout my study abroad internship I have always been involved with some amazing activities. I had the opportunity the pass the sliotar while kayaking down the liffey, taking in a different point of view. I have also been to the hills on the outskirts of Dublin where I flew from tree to tree on zip lines with a hurl in my hand. I have also witnessed the athletes of Experience Gaelic games hitting Sliotars off the top of the jeep while it was flooring around the field. My first week we traveled to the Carton house to immerse the Boston College football team. I saw some classmates from high school that were on the team, and they loved the experience. After understanding the culture behind the games the team got to participate and learn some skills between the sports. All of these activities have always reminded me the best aspect about Experience Gaelic Games, it is to always have fun with what you do.

 

When groups come in to Experience Gaelic Games, they truly get an insider look at the pride and sense of community that club members share. The Gaelic Athletic Association is a way of life, and you get to experience it first hand at Experience Gaelic Games. When my school came learning the skills of each game, it provided to be one of the best experience for my friends and I. At EGG you get a full immersion into the culture behind the games in a fun environment that suits the needs of all different groups. I would highly suggest this activity to anyone who is willing to immerse themselves in the culture. Experience Gaelic Games has changed the way I will carry out my life. I hope you have the opportunity as well.

Study abroad crew Champlain

Study Abroad Fall 2016 crew from Champlain

 

All the best,
Jeffrey Zeleny

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The World Series – A Gaelic Speaking Connection! http://www.experiencegaelicgames.com/world-series-gaelic-speaking-connection/ http://www.experiencegaelicgames.com/world-series-gaelic-speaking-connection/#respond Thu, 27 Oct 2016 07:37:32 +0000 http://www.experiencegaelicgames.com/?p=6614 The Gaelic Speaking Family That Took Baseballs Greatest Crown   Brian G. O’Sullivan   Ever since the inception of Experience Gaelic Games we have been amazed by the posterity of our Gaelic Diaspora. From London to Zurich, Sydney to Tokyo and Heart’s Content to San Deigo; we have learned that the Gaelic gospel has remained...

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The Gaelic Speaking Family That Took Baseballs Greatest Crown

 

Brian G. O’Sullivan

 

Ever since the inception of Experience Gaelic Games we have been amazed by the posterity of our Gaelic Diaspora. From London to Zurich, Sydney to Tokyo and Heart’s Content to San Deigo; we have learned that the Gaelic gospel has remained a storied legacy across the world for generations.

An oral tradition passed on by grandparents at bedtime; that coloured many a childhood dream. That dream became a reality for thousands via a visit to Experience Gaelic Games. Many have rediscovered their ancestral sporting and cultural heritage through the games of Hurling and Gaelic Football; reliving the spirits of their forbearers.

Patrons from Chicago and Cleveland have warmed our hearts with their passion for sport. This week they go toe to toe in pursuit of Baseballs greatest crown – The World Series. For the next week, and a half, Baseball will be talk of every bar, hair salon; tattoo parlour and creamery stop from the Doner Pass to Nigeria Falls. Unbeknown to many the “Gaelic word” was once the talk of the Baseball world. Forcing many professional players and managers into learning the Irish language!

Gaelic Born, Baseball Renowned

gaelic-steve-oneill-world-series-champion-as-a-player-and-manager

However it was their younger brother Steve that left a lasting legacy in the diamond Ball Park. Steve managed a unique double incorporating both the Cubs and the Indians. In 1920 he was a formidable catcher when the blue ribbon of Baseball came to Cleveland for the first time. Twenty-five years later he was at the helm when Detroit Tigers overcame the Cubs (4-3) in the World Steve included, his son in law Skeeter Webb in the successful line up.

 

Steve O’Neill

The Whole Family, Gaelic Style

Family ties are particularly strong in the Gaelic world. This year three O’Shea brothers lined out for Mayo in the All-Ireland Senior Football final. Three would be a meagre number when you factor in that six Quigley’s hurled for Wexford and seven Mahers for Tipperary when they won All-Ireland Hurling honours in 1895, 1896, 1898, 1899 and 1900 giving them a total of thirty-five Celtic crosses – the equivalent of a World Series pennant thirty-five times over!

It wouldn’t be strange to have a couple of brothers, an uncle, a father in law or the priest that married the families together in one Gaelic team. The truth be told it is all the more exciting when they are on opposing sides!!

For The Family One And All

Experience Gaelic Games offers a unique package that incorporates all the family. Mums, dads, sons and daughters often take on grand dads, grand mums, uncles, aunts, cousins, in-laws and outlaws in an attempt to win the holiday bragging rights. A Gaelic World Series of sorts.

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Hurling – An Ancient Viking Connection? http://www.experiencegaelicgames.com/viking-connections-irelands-hurling/ http://www.experiencegaelicgames.com/viking-connections-irelands-hurling/#respond Wed, 05 Oct 2016 14:31:56 +0000 http://www.experiencegaelicgames.com/?p=6588 Scandinavians who Tour Ireland Savour the Gaelic Spirit Brian G. O’Sullivan From the inception of Experience Gaelic Games a strong link with Scandinavia formed. So much so that today visitors from all over Scandinavia who tour Ireland come to us to flavour the delights of Gaelic Games. They leave with an appreciation of both Irish...

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Vikings Playing Knattleikr

Interpretation Vikings Playing Knattleikr

Scandinavians who Tour Ireland Savour the Gaelic Spirit

Brian G. O’Sullivan

From the inception of Experience Gaelic Games a strong link with Scandinavia formed. So
much so that today visitors from all over Scandinavia who tour Ireland come to us to flavour the
delights of Gaelic Games. They leave with an appreciation of both Irish sporting culture and
the close links their own race has with Ireland.

We have a special relationship; as both the Irish and Scandinavians have been concurring
with each other for millennia. Our most vivid correlation formed around the Vikings who left
an ever lasting impression of Irish history.

Viking Prowess

Unknown to many is the sporting prowess of the invading Vikings. Naturally strongman
challenges were their forte coupled and their battlefield cleverness; which in turn formed
many combat games. Much of these can be still seen in the Scottish Highlands during the
summer carnival season.

A visit to Experience Gaelic Games will showcase Ireland’s ancient pastimes; Hurling being
our chosen stick and ball game. Records date to 1172BC, so much so by 2016AD, a unique
tribal sporting bond exists between the populace of Ireland and the game of hurling.

Patrons from Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Finland, Iceland and even a stag party from the
Faroe Islands delighted themselves in Gaelic Games. Spending a day as a Gael and rekindling
the same sporting and cultural passion their ancient ancestors possessed.

Knattleikr – Viking Hurling

In olden times the Vikings had a stick and ball that was played with the same spirit and tribal
passion as Hurling is today. Knattleikr, as it is known, is still played in parts of Iceland and in
North America colleges. Norse culture enthusiasts are keeping the flame of the ancient
pastime alive.

No doubt both cultures had an influence on each of our chosen stick and ball games. Hurling
was coined from battlefield scenarios that forged a game. Knattleikr naturally was bred from
similar lines.

One look at a basic description of the game testifies that – Game-play involves a hard ball hit
by a stick, although players can also use their hands. Body contact is allowed in the fight for
the ball; where the strongest has the best chance to win. Thus, intimidation is a vital
ingredient; several war of words have been recorded by old sagas!

Without doubt Knattleikr was played in Ireland; as the Vikings gained a foothold here from
800-1000AD. Good Friday 1014AD was when we bid farewell to one another. It is doubtful
that a Knattleikr/Hurling compromise challenge ever took place. Sporting romantics amongst
us, fantasise that it did!

Is there a Knattleikr team out their planning to tour Ireland? A visit to Experience Gaelic
Games is a must to reintroduce the passion of Knattleikr to the Gaelic world again.

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The Boston Eagles have landed! Great Gaelic Connections! http://www.experiencegaelicgames.com/boston-eagles-gaelic-connections/ http://www.experiencegaelicgames.com/boston-eagles-gaelic-connections/#respond Thu, 01 Sep 2016 08:34:21 +0000 http://www.experiencegaelicgames.com/?p=6569 Boston Eagles Hoping To Maintain The Luck Of The Irish Brian G. O’Sullivan When Boston College Eagles take to the field on Saturday next, in the Aer Lingus College Football Classic, they will be carrying the hopes and wishes of many Irish fans both here and abroad. The university has close links to the Emerald...

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Boston Eagles Hoping To Maintain The Luck Of The Irish

Boston Eagles try Gaelic Games with Experience Gaelic Games in Dublin

Boston Eagles try Gaelic Games with Experience Gaelic Games in Dublin

Brian G. O’Sullivan

When Boston College Eagles take to the field on Saturday next, in the Aer Lingus College Football Classic, they will be carrying the hopes and wishes of many Irish fans both here and abroad. The university has close links to the Emerald Isle; and Experience Gaelic Games! Hundreds of BC students and alumni have learned the craft and culture of Irish sport through Gaelic Football, Handball and Hurling. On Saturday they will be put to the test.

Maiden Venture

If there was one US institution that demonstrates the close links between Ireland the American its Boston College. Not so surprising then that in the first of five previous College Classics in Dublin, Boston Eagles featured in the maiden venture.

There can only be one first and Boston’s unique link with Ireland was cemented with a 38-24 victory against Army. It was the shining light in another wise disappointing season which saw them finish 3-8. Following their trip to Ireland Army returned and qualified for the Sun Bowl going down to Alabama in El Paso, Texas. With the Irish Summer still lingering the 2016 Dublin Classic could well turn into an early season Sun Bowl!

Boston Irish

Being based on the eastern seaboard, Boston, was uniquely placed for many Irish immigrants. It was the first port of call for hundreds of thousands of emmigrants’ Irish over the centuries. There isn’t a street in Boston that hasn’t housed an Irish person. Or a district that hasn’t seen an Irish Pub!

Gaelic Games are central to the way of life for Irish Bostonians. Thirty-three Gaelic Clubs make up the North Eastern Division of the North American Gaelic Board. All are based within the environs of Boston. At Experience Gaelic Games we are always delighted to hear when patrons return to Boston and immerse themselves in Gaelic culture. Boston Eagles may well return to play Hurling or Gaelic Football and add a Gaelic Inter-Collegiate pennant to the trophy cabinet at Chestnut Hill.

Steve Addazio may not have any Irish heritage but his linebackers may well be ancestors of the great Irish-American sporting superstar John L. Sullivan. The Boston Brawler who was the undisputed king of bare knuckle boxing. He typified what it meant to be Irish. A fighting spirit, transcended from generations of Irish-Americans, in the North American city.

A Gaelic Boston Line Out

A mere glimpse at the Boston Eagles roster gives you a sense of how Gaelic this team really are Freshmen Aidan Hegarty, Sean McFadden, Sean Ragan Jimmy Martin, Shane Leonard and Gabriel McClary could make up a defensive unit on a Gaelic Football outfit in any part of Ireland. Couple this with Jack Galvin, Jack Kenny, Ray Smith, Tommy Sweeney and Jimmy Lowery you have the makings of a generic Gaelic team Hurling or Football.

Bostons Jim Cashman

Bostons Jim Cashman

Cork legendary hurler Jim Cashman(1)

Cork legendary hurler Jim Cashman

In all the one hundred strong outfit, the Eagles will bring to Dublin, two names stand out above all. Those of Jim Cashman and Mike Palmer. Six-foot-seven tall offensive line, Cashman, is in his senior year. He excelled in taking fifty-eight snaps in his Junior season. His name is synonymous in the Gaelic world already. Between 1985-1996 Jim Cashman was one of Irelands leading hurlers. Excelling, like the offensive giant from Haddonfield, NJ, he lorded at centre-back; and was instrumental in bringing two All-Ireland Hurling titles to Cork in 1986 and 1990. Saturday could see the rebirth of another Jim Cashman legacy on Irish soil.

BC's Mike Palmer

BC’s Mike Palmer

Should Freshman Mike Palmer from Endwell, NY, make his Eagle debut as a Defensive Back on Saturday afternoon he too will carry on the legacy of his namesake; affectionately known as Micksie Palmer. Like the Six-foot-one high school superstar from Maine, Micksie Palmer was a teak tough corner-back for Kerry’s Gaelic Football side of the 1950s winning national honours in 1953 and 1955; a man who took no prisoners and played with style and abandon. The stage is set for Micksie II to take up the mantle!

All said Boston holds a unique place in our hearts, and Ireland in theirs. We have genetic links and a deep pride of place that shine out through our sporting culture. The Eagles portray their passion through the game of Football. We symbolise ours through Hurling and Gaelic Football. We are separated by a wide ocean but our names are similar; our games will bring us together! Lets play!

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