Celebration Dinner Dance

November 8, 2018

Clonmore GFC enjoyed a great night of celebrations at the Seven Oaks Hotel, Carlow last Friday.


Chairman, Tom Doyle, welcomed the huge crowd of over 200 and said it was heartening to see three cups on display after a number of barren years. The Minors took pride of place by winning the “B” Championship while the Intermediates and Juniors also tasted success by winning their respective Divisions. The Intermediates and Under 21s also reached their Championship Finals in 2011.


The club was also celebrating the successes of its Juveniles who are going from strength to strength thanks to a hard working Committee, and the Chairman thanked all members of the club involved in field development and fund raising, especially those who work on and support the club’s very successful Lotto.


Tom handed over to MC for the night, Eddie Forde, who proceeded to do a great job in introducing the various award winners and keeping things moving smoothly on a busy night that saw over sixty players receiving medals. The Annual Awards for 2011 were also made to the following: Hall of Fame: Gerry McCarney, Clubman of the Year: Paddy Lawlor, Juvenile Clubman of the Year: James Whelan. Player of the Year Awards were made to Shane McGrath (Minor), PJ Byrne (Young Player), Colin Doyle (Junior) and Paul Byrne (Intermediate). A Special Service Award to long serving stalwart, Mick Kelly, was greeted with a spontaneous standing ovation which lasted several minutes. Bouquets of flowers were also presented to Kathleen McCarney, Joan Lawlor and Lily Purser.


A thoroughly enjoyable night was had by all as the big crowd created a great atmosphere, the food was first class, thanks to the Seven Oaks, and the lively music provided by the band, At Nightfall, kept people dancing till the early hours. This was a great start to 2012 for the club and hopes are high that, with renewed commitment, the successes enjoyed on the field of play in 2011 can be surpassed in 2012.


The following are profiles of the Award winners:


Hall of Fame Award: Gerry McCarney

Gerry was a distinguished hurler and footballer with his local club, Craobh Ciarán, of Coolock before moving to Hacketstown in 1961 to work on St Patrick’s College, Highpark. He was involved in the Clonmore teams beaten in senior county finals in 1963 and 65 along with brother Tommy. Known as a crafty forward, he brought his Dublin “cleverality” with him and could always be relied upon to do the unexpected. Gerry gave sterling service to the club during the lean years of the sixties & seventies and, when his playing days were over, got involved on the Committee, helping to develop the new grounds at Woodside and received the Clubman of the Year Award in 1977. He was the first Chairman of the new Juvenile Committee in 1978 and did trojan work for the juveniles over the years. Many of Gerry’s family have followed in his footsteps and are heavily involved in the club – three grandsons, Kevin, David & Conor, and granddaughter Caoimhe, won medals in 2011 while Eoin is showing promise with the juveniles. Congratulations to Gerry on his well deserved entry into the Clonmore Hall of Fame.


Service Award: Mick Kelly

One of Clonmore’s elder statesmen and an Honorary President, Mick has given a lifetime of service to the club. An ever present at games since the fifties, Mick helped out at every level from juveniles to seniors, supplying minerals to quench thirsts and encouraging players with a kind word. He served on numerous Committees, was our regular Gateman for many years and no job was too big or too small for him. Son Tommy and grandson Darragh are keeping up the family tradition. Mick always enjoyed a bit of “banter” with referees and a famous exchange of words took place one day when Mick was doing Umpire but was finding it hard to hide his allegiance. When the Referee questioned his decision to wave yet another shot from the opposition “wide”, Mick stuck to his guns, refused to put up the white flag and informed the Ref that “the next one will be wide too” !   Mick is a very popular and deserving recipient of the Service Award.

Clubman of the Year: Paddy Lawlor

No club could survive without the likes of Paddy. He has been active in the club for over twenty years starting with the juveniles and carrying on through to adults teams, doing development work, helping out on the lotto, doing umpire etc. He was a very proud man when his son, Pauric, captained the Intermediate team to victory in the Div 2 Final. This award is well deserved recognition for the work done over many years by Paddy and especially in 2011.


Juvenile Clubman of the Year: James Whelan

Since taking over as Chairman of the Juvenile Committee in 2010, Jim has led a very active Committee who have enjoyed great success on and off the field. He has worked hard to improve coaching standards at underage level, to support mentors and to improve fund raising. In 2011, he undertook a coaching course himself, was a mentor with the U-14 & U-16 teams and still found time to work on the Lotto ‘A Team’. Well done and congratulations to Jim.

Intermediate Player of the Year: Paul Byrne

As the only member of the 1991 MFC winning team still playing, Paul is the Daddy of the Intermediate team. A great reader of the game who never wastes possession, like a fine wine “Fisher” is improving with age and had a great season in 2011. Comes from a family steeped in Clonmore football – grandfather, Billy, was on 1950 Junior winning team. Also Assistant Secretary of the club and a Minor Selector.


Junior Player of the Year: Colin Doyle

Another long serving player from a family steeped in football, Colin had a long and distinguished career on the Senior team before stepping down to lend his experience to the Junior team that won Division 4 in 2011. A great reader of the game with a never-say-die attitude, he was the rock on which the Junior’s defence was built last year. Secretary of the Juvenile Committee.


Under 21 Player of the Year: PJ Byrne

“Little P” matured into a fine player during 2011 and had an outstanding campaign with the U-21s who reached the county final. Playing at centre-forward and midfield, he showed great leadership and vision. Has an accurate right boot from play or frees, is very committed to training and rarely has a bad game.


Minor Player of the Year: Shane McGrath

As Captain of the Minor team that won the Championship, “Shock” led by example. He kicked a great long range point to win the Minor semi-final and scored 3-11 in 13 games for the Intermediates – not bad for his debut season. He had a great year and won medals with Minors, Juniors and Intermediate teams. Very dedicated to his football, Shane is an accurate and alert forward with a great future ahead of him. On 2012 county Minor panel.