St Paul’s and St Mary’s areas are holding a swimming area competition on Monday May 28 at 5pm at Portlaoise Swimming Pool. For further information contact Breda at 086 6076957.


Toastmaster Mark Bastow, was a busy man on Monday May 14, as he not only chaired a successful meeting, but delivered an excellent evaluation and also produced certificates for the youth leadership group in Mountrath.

Dympna McWey delighted the audience with her icebreaker, her first speech in the club. She spoke eloquently of her life so far, and judging by this speech, she will be a very valued and valuable member in the years to come. Pat Lillis followed with his insightful analysis of a poem by Robert Frost and cleverly composed a poem on the same topic. We may of course be biased, but we preferred Pat’s and urge him to continue to explore his creative side. The final speaker, Mary Heaney, intrigued the audience with her entertaining and forthright views on none other than light bulbs. She imbued each type with a certain personality, much to the amusement of those present.

Excellent evaluations were supplied by Kevin Langan, Mark Bastow and Ann Duncan and topicsmaster was Bryan Holland. His topics ranged from where we feel most comfortable to plans for the holidays ahead and were, as always, eagerly discussed by all present.

Finally the general evaluator, Meree O’Sullivan, gave a very thorough and perceptive analysis of the night’s performance. She commended the work of all the participants and awarded the Geraldine O’Loughlin prize to Mary Heaney for her entertainment on the night. The final meeting is on Monday May 28 and will be an end of year celebration. Club President, Orlagh McCrory has much to be proud of as this has surely been one of our most successful years ever. We look forward to welcoming many more new members when we resume in September.


Portlaoise Musical Society are holding a movies and music table quiz on Friday May 25 in Silvers bar at 9pm.

Prizes for first, second and third place awarded also a prize for the funniest wrong answer. Tables cost €40 for a team of four and everyone is welcome to come along and join in the fun in what promises to be a fun night out. Further details are available from Damien Halpin on 085165496.


Storytelling for toddlers, Tuesday 11am. Knitting group, Wednesday 11am - 1pm. Ciorcal Comhrá, Wednesday 5.15pm - 6.30pm, come along for a chat and use your ‘cúpla focal’, all levels welcome.


Mental Health Ireland, in conjunction with Laois Partnership, is running a one day work shop for community leaders and community workers in Respond Community Centre, Mill Court, Green Lane, Portlaoise on Tuesday June 12 from 10am to 4pm. The aim of this workshop is to train community activists to impart knowledge to community groups on mental health related issues. The training is free of charge. Further Information or to book a place, contact Storm Powell, Laois Partnership at stormpowell@laoispartnership.ie or telephone 087 1775729.


May 28, tea dance Mountmellick. May 30, Bealtaine, Viennese evening. Contact 057 8621571 or 057 8621913.


Portlaoise Comhaltas are having an end of year concert on Monday May 28 in the upstairs section of Kavanagh’s bar, on Main Street, Portlaoise, 7 - 9pm. €2 entrance fee to cover costs. Raffle on the night. Craic agus ceol guaranteed.


The Hawthorn Drive residents association annual AGM will be held Tuesday, May 29, at 8.30pm in the meeting room in the Portlaoise Leisure Centre at 8.30pm. All residents should attend.


Congratulations to all young competitors who have qualified for the national finals of the Community Games which take place in Athlone this weekend May 25-27. In Athletics we have Aoife Daly, Elaine Daly, and Tom Reddy in the mixed distance relays. PJ Daly, Aisling Boyle, Erone Fitzpatrick, Leon Holland, and Jake Dargan are competing in the cross country. In the group modern dance we have Norah-Jane O’Donohue and Tess O’Donohue. In the draughts team under 10 we have Holly Kavanagh, Cormac Dunne, Ellen Walsh, Aaron Thornton, Lisa Keane, Jack Reddy and Mark Phelan. In art we have Eva Booth and Tara Fahy. We would like to wish all those talented young people all the best and hope they have an enjoyable and competitive weekend. Also to wish all team managers all the best.

Area athletics finals on Wednesday May 30 at 3.30pm at the Heath GAA pitch. Admission €2. Races for all age groups from Under 8 to Under 16, see website for full details of all the distances www.communitygames.ie

Closing date for all interested in taking part in swimming this year is Wednesday May 23. Please contact Catherine 0857039359 for further details.


Portlaoise Country Market every Friday 10.30am to 12.30pm in St Mary’s Hall, Dublin Road, Portlaoise.