19 Aug 2022

Longford Leader gallery: Cruinniú na nÓg - a jam packed day of creativity and fun for children across county Longford

Cruinniú na nÓg took place on Saturday, June 12.


Each year, for the past four years, this day has been designated as Ireland’s national day of free creativity for children and young people with over 600 events taking place nationwide.

Last year due to public health restrictions all events took place online but this year here in Longford in addition to a wide range of online events a number of live events were able to take place outdoors.

Cathaoirleach of Longford County Council Paul Ross said, “I was delighted to be able to officially launch the day at the public playground in Ballymahon and to see lots of children getting involved in the first workshop of the day learning to make and fly your own kite.”

Cllr Ross added, “I congratulate everyone involved in the compilation of a passport to the 24 playgrounds in the county designed by an impressive young company called EZxploring. This company are also responsible for preparing tourism guides to each of the towns in the county and this fun guide to each of the playgrounds will be a very useful tool for families particularly as we head into the busy summer holiday period.”

Longford Municipal District Cathaoirleach, Cllr Peggy Nolan launched a beautiful new picture book for young children called ‘Bees love Dandelions’, written and illustrated by photographer Shelley Corcoran and artist Angelika Florkiewicz from Angel’s Graphics.

Cllr Nolan commended the author for putting the spotlight on a very important topic, namely the possible extinction of our wild bees species. “Two of our wild bee species are already extinct and one-third of our 98 wild bee species are in danger.” Shelley was inspired to write the book in order to create a greater awareness among both adults and children of the importance of letting dandelions and wildflowers grow to allow our wild bees to pollinate.

Other events taking place online and in the outdoors included art, music, storytelling, drama, dance film and much more.

A number of schools took part in some exciting creative projects in advance of the day itself including an art and creative writing project called Talking to Trees while a number of schools identified and celebrated someone they regarded as a local hero.

Cloontagh national school chose Uilleann piper Noel Carbery, Abbeylara National School chose Connie Kiernan who designed his own plane and the famous wall of death and St Matthew’s Ballymahon chose local community garda Emma Kiernan as their local hero.

Cruinniú na nÓg Coordinator Mary Carleton Reynolds said, “we are delighted with how many of our children and young people across the county responded to the programme and how many actively participated in the day. Each year the programme gets bigger and more diverse so that there is something to appeal to every taste whether it's music, art, dance, story and so on and we also provide a platform for many of our young people to showcase their own creativity.

“We are very grateful to all the Longford artists who have worked with us to make this such a special day for children around the county and also to our partners who are such an important part of the programme Backstage Theatre and the Young Curators programme, Music Generation Longford, Harp Media, Still Voices Film Festival, Republic of Culture, and of course all of our teachers and pupils who participate in the programme.

You can still view some of the videos of the young people who participated in the day on Creative Ireland Longford facebook and Longford Libraries youtube.”

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