On Saturday, June 22 the balcony of Aherlow House Hotel was alive with excitement, chat and great fun as women from all over Tipperary, nearby counties and even Australia took part in the 2013 Aherlow House Hotel Moonlight Walk.
The rain was persistent but gentle and it did not deter the ladies who turned out in their gear with great enthusiasm to support and be a part of this spectacular charity event.
Whilst the beautiful melodies from the CJ Kickham Brass & Reed Band completed the party atmosphere, the participants huddled under the new marquee holding the balloons in preparation for an integral part of the event, the balloon wish; where thoughts for loved ones are released to the heavens with love and good wishes.
At the Moonlight Walk starting line, T.D. Mattie McGrath who did the walk 3-years ago (and was the only man allowed to do so in this women only event) was ready to cut the ribbon. The countdown for the balloon-wish began and then hundreds of balloons floated upwards carrying prayers, thoughts and memories before the ladies set off into the woods. There, the party atmosphere was replaced with a quietness, a stillness that descends as you step through a beautiful forest with the sounds of birds singing, the crunching of leaves and twigs underfoot in a few moments of serenity.
This year the Aherlow Moonlight Walk was in aid of Scoil Aonghusa Special National School in Cashel.
Scoil Aonghusa provides an educational environment that promotes the development of the whole child, body and mind, in a nurturing, stimulating and happy setting. The school was established in 1978 for children with Moderate General Learning Difficulties (GLD) and is now catering for three designated areas of learning ability: Moderate GLD, Severe / Profound GLD and Autistic Spectrum Disorder. Teacher, Geraldine Maher, who has worked at Scoil Aonghusa for 33 years made a passionate and emotional speech about the school’s commitment to the development of the students at the Aherlow House Hotel Moonlight Walk launch in May. “The Moonlight Walk was a great night despite the weather and there was lots of chat and craic amongst the participants. The event was well organised and the hospitality of the hotel was super. It was a thoroughly enjoyable night and thanks to everyone who came out and supported us,”
Laura Sweeney, Moonlight Walk committee, was delighted at how smoothly it all went. “Once again, a fun-filled evening while fund-raising. I was so glad and grateful to see so many ladies turn out for such a great cause. I’d like to thank T.D. Mattie McGrath for coming to cut the ribbon at the start of the walk and also Helen Morrissey and the Aherlow Failte committee for all their help.”
On their return to the hotel at the end of the walk, the ladies were treated to a glass of champagne and the lively atmosphere continued as as they partied into the night.