The above will be 40 years in existence on Thursday March 7. To celebrate the occasion we are having a Mass in the Wolfe Tone Court Centre at 7pm, followed with refreshments, music and dance. We would like more people to join us on the evening and we invite all past and present who were and are involved in any way to celebrate this special event with us. Contact numbers: Ursula 087 9904109, Brigid 057 8624232 or Claire 057 8624853.


This year’s drama festival runs from Friday March 8 to Friday March 15 at 8pm nightly in Mountmellick Arts Centre. See Stage Left for full details.


A table quiz in aid of Clonaghadoo Community Care takes place on Saturday March 9 in High Chaparral in Geashill. Table of 4 €20. Your support would be appreciated.


On Saturday March 9 and Wednesday March 13 Comhaltas will provide music from 7.15 pm to 8pm at the Arts Centre for the drama festival. The annual concert will be held on Friday March 22 at 7.30pm. Tickets are €5 for adults and €3 for children and students. We are still looking for ideas for a Gathering 2013 event, any thoughts on this please pass onto any committee member. For information on the upcoming Irish music/dance/singing workshop in Celbridge on Saturday March 23 talk to Brian Ryan. We will be represented at the county finals on Saturday March 16 in Mountmellick.


Representing Mountmellick in the talent area final competition are Emer Comerford, Hannah Dunne, Aoife Oxley, Orlaith Whelan, Éille Lalor, ‘An Reel’ music group, Noel Stapleton and Emma Hunt. This final will be in Mountmellick Arts Centre on Saturday March 16. Michael Dowling, Blathnaid Connolly, Grainne Moore, and Noel Stapleton (team Mountmellick) and Ella Livingston, John Hughes, Lyndon Livingston (team JEL) will travel to the county final in O’Dempsey’s GAA club in Killenard on Thursday March 7. The quiz starts at 7pm so be there 30 minutes beforehand. For further information contact 085 7138940.


A table quiz will be held on Thursday March 9 at 9pm in The Druid in aid of St Patrick’s Day Parade. All support appreciated.


The parade will start at 2pm sharp from The Harbour with assembly from 1.30pm. A fee of €5 will apply to each float taking part however there is no fee for children’s groups. This year all interested groups are asked to register their entry by texting PARADE followed by your name and group to 087 2726525 and/or 087 7927297. The committee is encouraging all individuals, groups, clubs, businesses and organisations from the locality to participate in the parade and the festivities. Local pubs can enter a float in the Battle of the Ballads, stop individually at O’Connell Square to perform a favourite ballad. The winner will be chosen by public approval.


A Crafts Fair will be held in O’Connell Square from 12pm to 5pm in conjunction with St Patrick’s Day parade. There will be children’s entertainment in the square including the Bumble Bus, bouncy castles, face painting and live music. Children’s competitions. The committee are looking for volunteers and/or representatives from local organisations to join them and act as stewards on the day. Contact Gerry Mulvaney chairman on 087 9570034 or Rosemary Whelan secretary on 087 2726525.


Coming up to St Patrick’s day Sarsfields LFC will be selling green ribbons for the Carers Association. Ribbons are €2 each and your support would be appreciated. Funds raised in Laois will be used for the Carer’s Association in the county. Why not join in wearing the green and support a good cause


All are welcome to the gallery to view an exhibition by Deirdre Dunne during the month of March. The knitting circle meets each Tuesday morning from 10.30am to noon. Bring along your knitting needles and join us for a cuppa and a chat. Our crossword club will meet on Thursday March 7 at 11am. Join us to take on the challenge of some simplex and cryptic crosswords and exercise those brain cells. The adult book club meets the first Tuesday of each month. New members welcome. Internet, printing, scanning and photocopying services are available in the library.


On Wednesday March 6 at 10.30am in the MDA, the next fortnightly group meeting will be held and plans for the coming year will be discussed. The annual membership fee is now due. On Wednesday March 13 the new Active Retirement Walking & Activities Club will assemble at the MDA at 10.30am for a short walk. Please wear high visibility jackets. New members are welcome to join the club at any time throughout the year. Weekly activities for members are: Mondays: Boccia in the Macra Hall at 7.30pm. Tuesdays: aqua aerobics in Portlaoise Leisure Centre at noon. The free bus to this leaves the MDA at 11.15am. Wednesdays: dancing with Maureen Culleton from 3pm to 4.30pm in Wolfe Tone Court. Thursdays: music and song in St Vincent’s Hospital 2pm to 4pm.


Beavers celebrated the birthday of our founder Robert Baden Powell which fell on Friday February 22, with a celebration cake at their last meeting. The group celebrated Founders Day by participating at noon Mass on Sunday February 24 in Mountmellick. Beavers, cubs and scouts brought up scout symbols, did readings, prayers of the faithful and brought up the gifts. Thanks to Fr M Murphy PP for his help and encouragement.


Sixers, seconders, patrol leaders and assistant patrol leaders participated in a course to help them with the new ONE programme in Durrow recently which they found very helpful. Thanks to Durrow scout group for organising the day.


Nine Cubs who are in their final year are now working towards the Chief Scout Award which is to be completed over 9 months. The group are delighted and honoured to be have a photo of their visit to the Curragh Camp last April featured in the 3rd edition book of the Defence Forces, which also featured the visit of Queen Elizabeth and the Inauguration of President Higgins.


Juvenile hurling training takes place each Monday evening in the sports complex at the following times: 6.30pm to 7.30pm for u8 and 7.30pm to 8.30pm for u10 and u12. U8 football training takes place in the sports complex every Friday at 6pm. All new players are welcome to attend. Juvenile registration contact any officer of the club and register as soon as possible.MOUNTMELLICK GAA

There was a large turnout for our presentation night in the Killeshin Hotel on Saturday night February 23. 2012 was a successful year for the club as our U-21s (Sarsfields Gaels) won the A Championship and our hurlers won the Junior B championship. Our Minors also contested the Minor A final. Medals were presented to the teams on the night. The lotto draw takes place every Tuesday night. Tickets are €2 and the jackpot is currently €8,200. Check out the Club’s Facebook page for weekly results.

Adult Training: Hurling training continues every Saturday and with management now in place for the footballers, training is on Fridays at 8pm. With League games starting in March the club is facing into a busy period.


Kickboxing and Taekwondo classes for juniors, seniors and adults are held in Mountmellick and Portlaoise on Monday, Tuesday, Friday and Saturday. Ladies classes are now also available. There is a full matted professional gym including punch bags and boxing ring. Classes are taught by a 4th degree National Champion. Contact 087 2768843.


This year’s pilgrimage to Lourdes takes place from Wednesday July 17 to Wednesday July 24 at a cost of €770 per person sharing. We will stay at The Solitude Hotel. The spiritual leaders will be Fr Mícheál Murphy PP and Fr Pat Hennessy PP. Contact Eleanor at 087 7670915.


The Willie Brock Sinn Féin Cumann thanks all who attended the Property Tax meeting in the Town Hall last Tuesday. Deputy Brian Stanley spoke about the Property Tax, its application and the implications for householders, followed by a lively question and answer session. Sinn Féin Mountmellick will be calling on householders in the coming weeks to sign a petition in support of the Sinn Féin Bill to repeal the tax. The petition will be presented to Dáil Éireann.


The Gathering at the Gandon takes place on the weekend from Friday March 8 to Sunday March 10 with Irish dancing workshops and céilidh. See Stage left for more.


Many thanks to all our sponsors and patrons who supported our recent pantomime Robinson Crusoe and to our junior cast and their parents. Thanks also to our wonderful choreographer Louise Ahearne. Our cast and producer Brian Brady also deserve huge gratitude. Macra members are invited to The Gathering on Saturday March 9 at 9pm in the Macra hall. A band and DJ will play on the night and food and entertainment will be provided. There is no admission fee. This is a night not to be missed. Well done to our question time quiz team of Sharon, Norman, Shane and Gemma who were placed 5th in the competition final. If anyone is interested in using the Macra hall for a particular occasion or event, please contact Rosemary on 087 2726525


February 20. Numbers drawn: 12, 13, 20, 24. No jackpot winner, this week’s jackpot is €13,000. Match 3s (€59): P Fagan (F Hibbitts), F Murphy (C Lindley), M & M Phelan (M Phelan) & L Dalton (M Lawlor). Your support would be appreciated for the weekly parish lotto, tickets are €2 each. Promoters are also needed, please contact the parish office at 057 8624390 for details.


February 21. Top score T Kearns. Ladies 1 C Martin. 2 P Horan. Gents 1 V Kearns. 2 J Harrison. Halves 1 B Keegan & M Gowing. 2 J O’Shea. Best of three L Kavanagh. Hatcher C Fitzpatrick.


February 27. Top score V Kearns. Ladies 1 B Fitzpatrick. 2 B Thompson. Gents 1 P Dowling. 2 T Delaney. Halves ladies 1 A Rochford & R Cole. 2 B O’Brien & Sr Madeline. Halves gents 1 Sr Michael. 2 J Hennessy. Lowest score J O’Shea. Hatcher T Kearns.


There was much sadness at the death of Brigid White of St Joseph’s Terrace at St Vincent’s Hospital on Tuesday February 26. Brigid was a much respected member of the community and was known to many through her work in the family business in Irishtown. Remains reposed at her residence on Wednesday until removal to St Joseph’s Church that evening. Requiem mass was celebrated at noon on Thursday with burial afterwards to St Joseph’s cemetery. The sincere sympathy of the community is extended to Brigid’s husband Albert, her sons and daughters, family, relatives, neighbours and friends on their bereavement.