Plenty to do over the Christmas holidays

Before you over indulge on the turkey, ham and mince pies over the festive period plan some time for a little light exercise by participating in one of the many charity walks which take place over the coming days.

Before you over indulge on the turkey, ham and mince pies over the festive period plan some time for a little light exercise by participating in one of the many charity walks which take place over the coming days.

Get Christmas Day off to a good start by attending the Goal Mile on Christmas Day at Portarlington GAA Club from 11am to 11.30am. NO registration required, just turn up on the morning.

The Annual St Stephen’s Day walk in Clonaslee is a great way to see the beautiful scenery of the Sliabh Bloom Mountains while raising funds for Laois Hospice.

The Clonaslee walk has two route options - so no excuses for anyone who over did it with the mulled wine on Christmas Day!

The long walk of 10miles gets underway at 12noon while the shorter walk of 3-4miles begins at 1pm. There will be refreshments in the Clonaslee Community Centre after both walks.

If walking is not your thing, then the Clonenagh Tractor Run will take place on Sunday, December 28 leaving a 1.30pm from Sheeran’s pub, Coolrain.

The Park/Ratheniska GAA Christmas “Cracker” will take place on Sunday, December 28 in the Park/Ratheniska GAA Club grounds.

A fun day out for all, the Christmas “Cracker” is an endurance test like no other.

The format has been tweaked somewhat following feedback from last years event, and so this year, there will be more obstacles and less road, or as the organisers like to say, “Less tar, more muck.”

If you’re brave enough, registration starts at 11an sharp. The 5km walk begins at 11:30am. while the the 5K and 10K obstacle fun runs will set off at 12 noon.

Irish rugby international, Alison Miller will lead off the 13th annual New Year’s Day sponsored walk in Timahoe for the Irish wheelchair Association. All funds raised will go towards the IWA Slieve Bloom Centre in Portlaoise. The event will begin on the village green at 1pm.

While Ballacolla Village is the place to be on New Year’s Day for the annual walk, pony and trap, high nelly and vintage road run.

Walkers, pony owners, vintage owners and high nelly clubs are all invited to get involved.Start time is at 2pm sharp. Registration at 1.15pm. Proceeds to the senior citizens and national schools.

Laois Hunt also have a busy festive period starting with the Abbeyleix Hunt on St Stephen’s Day, leaving The Square in Abbeyleix at 12 noon. On Sunday, December 28 a charity ride will take place in The Heath at 1pm. On Monday, December 29 a hunt will take place in Ballacolla, while Ballyfin is the venue on New Years Eve.