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Blessin ton Issue 1: October 2010

A Community Magazine for Blessington

& Surrounding Areas




The TOP 5 horror films as voted by you


online gremlins

Secure your Computer


Welcome to the first issue


t’s taken alot of time, effort, blood (maybe not), sweat, tears, sleepless nights and money but finally we’ve managed to get this thing off the ground. First of all I would like to say a huge THANK YOU to all of our advertisers. Without you this couldn’t have happened and with your continued support we hope to grow and expand the magazine. The response we’ve had from local people about the magazine has been fantastic. Messages of encouragement and well wishes have made it all worthwhile. As you also may know we have a Facebook page and the number of friends joining is increasing everyday. I hope you enjoy the issue and finally, please support your local businesses by supporting the people who advertise with us. Without them, this FREE magazine would not be possible!

Colm Copy Deadline - November 2010: Monday 18th October

Contact us

T: 087 6430519

Email: Editor: Colm Geoghegan Graphic Design: Colm Geoghegan Printing: Punctual Print, Blessington Email: Phone: Bernard / Dave: 045 865133

contents 07| Local News Pakistan Floods

Sister Rebecca Conlan and the Columban Sisters help the flood victims in Pakistan

12| Halloween Recipe Colcannon

This Irish Potatoe based meal associated with Halloween is sure to warm you up on the cold Winter nights.

14| In Cinemas Movie Reviews

Shyamalan’s Devil scares up the punters, Will Ferrell and Mark Wahlberg buddy up in The Other Guys and Dante returns with The Hole.

22| Health The Sweetest Thing

The importance of understanding Diabetes.

08 13 17

School Life 18 Profile - Storm Cinemas 26 What’s Going on? Sudoku Competition 28 Halloween Safety

Cover Image: Blessington Magazine. Tel: 087 6430519 Email: All material copyright © Blessington Magazine 2010. All rights reserved.

DELIVERED FREE TO 6,000 HOMES & BUSINESSES EVERY MONTH Look for us on Facebook: Blessington Mag The opinions and views expressed in Blessington Magazine are those of the individual authors or contributors and are not necessarily those of the Editor of Blessington Magazine. Blessington Magazine assume no liability for accuracy, errors or omissions in editorial or offer content. No advice or information given by contributors, Blessington Magazine or any other party shall create any warranty or liability. Blessington Magazine cannot accept any responsibility for any loss or damage that may arise as a result of any errors, omissions or inaccuracies in this magazine. All information, facts & advertising are understood to be correct at time of going to press. However, Blessington Magazine cannot accept responsibility for any changes after the deadline. Movie Images: Universal Pictures, Columbia Pictures, Overture / E1 Entertainment. Horror Movie Images:


LOCAL news

compiled by John Bohan

blessington soccer club

The past few years have been very busy both on and off the playing fields for Blessington Soccer Club. On the playing fields the club now have two adult and close to twenty schoolboy teams in action every weekend throughout the soccer season which runs from August right trough until the end of May/ early June. Their senior A team are now playing at the highest level ever operating in AUL Premier B for the past few seasons with their Senior B team playing AUL Division 2. Their schoolboy teams start at U/7 and this section of the club has been very successful over the years. Last year they won a total of five trophies in the South Dublin League which was the best season ever and hopes are very high that another success-

ful season is on the horizon in 2010/11. Off the playing fields the club has made tremendous strides in recent years. After spending forty years at Deerpark on the Naas Road they moved to their new state of the art grounds at Crosschapel. In the beginning they had just one pitch in operation but in 2009 development work commenced on two further pitches which were played on for the very first time in August this year. As a result of this development all of the 11 a side schoolboy teams along with the two senior teams play their home matches here every weekend. At Crosschapel the club also has a lovely modern clubhouse and six dressing rooms.

in the past year was awarded with the South Dublin Club of the year award. They then followed that up with the FAI club of the month award which put them in the running for the FAI club of the year which they narrowly lost. So from small beginnings way back in the late 60’s the club has established itself as the largest in the Blessington area and continues to be very successful and grow on a yearly basis.

Because of the great work on and off the playing fields down through the years, the club 05


local news

CELEBRATING 20 YEARS IN BUSINESS The Office Shop celebrated 20 years in business this year, with the Post Office sharing the premises for ten of those years.

When Jackie McCann started up The Office Shop in 1990 she was hoping to fill a gap in the market by supplying stationery to the local business community and mainly those who had small enterprises at


home. She soon realised that the local school and college students needed to be catered for too as there was nowhere in the locality for them to buy the never ending supply of school and college stationery. Jackie has watched both the shop and the town develop over the years with many other shops opening up, some thriving and others not so lucky. She puts her success down to hard work, dedication by her staff and the support of the community to shop locally. In recent years she has introduced a card gallery and gift section which is personally managed by Jill Rossiter.

Here people can buy quality cards at a budget price. Jill hand picks the card selection and tries to match these to the vast range of gift wrap and gift bags in the shop. The shop and post office now boasts a staff of eight all of whom hail from the local area. Jackie believes that this adds to the friendly, personal atmosphere people experience when they enter the premises. Jackie would like to see the Office Shop develop even further in the coming years and continue to provide the community with a shop that moves with the times, and caters for those changes.


LOCAL news

by John Bohan



ister Rebecca Conlan is a nun with the Columban Sisters in Pakistan. She has spent more years than she would care to remember as a missionary in Pakistan. Sister Rebecca is a frequent visitor to Blessington as her brother Pat is a resident in the town for a number of years. During her time spent in Pakistan she has seen good and bad times in a troubled country which always seems to be at war. But nothing compares to the recent dreadful floods which have devastated most of the country leaving acres upon acres under water and around 20 million residents homeless. To put that number into perspective that is around five times the population of Ireland homeless. Recently in the Blessington Parish money was collected at all the masses over a weekend and that money was passed on to Sr. Rebecca to help the flood victims as best as she can. The Columban Sisters went about reaching out to the traumatised flood victims. Some people describe the flood as a slow sunami as so many people have been displaced from their home and town lands. The sister’s effort is like a drop in the ocean but they continued to seek out the most in need. On the highways and byways they sought out those people who had genuinely lost all. They came across flocks of women with children and babies in their arms who were undernourished. They were sitting out in the hot sun with only a string bed to protect them from the warm sun. The sisters focussed on one group of very needy people who had travelled for around seven hours as their villages had been completely flooded.

an 80 year old woman who enquired were they fasting because of Ramadan and when they informed her they were Christians she offered them a cup of tea. Even in her time of need she still had a heart of gold. Tents were distributed to these people just in time as more rain arrived. But at least they now were protected from the elements. Material and some sewing machines were among the items handed out so the people could make some much needed clothes for themselves and their children. Helping out the flood victims is now sadly a daily routine for Sr. Rebecca and her fellow Columban Sisters as the Pakistan authorities seem to have almost completely forgotten about them. Only for people like Sr. Rebecca and the charities a lot more people would be dead. Funds can always be donated to help them out and this can be given to any of our local priests who will then forward it to Sr. Rebecca who you can see will put it to very good use.

They saw that their priorities were tents, food, children’s clothes, pots, water coolers and clean drinkable water. Meals were cooked for over 100 people as they had not eaten for days. In some cases this was because of Ramadan the Moslim holy season which was due to finish on Saturday September 11. The sisters came across 07



st. mary’s school Hallelujah Choir

St. Marys will be sending their school choir to the RDS, Dublin this year for the Hallelujah Concert in December. The concert has been held in

the RDS for the last number of years and this is our choir’s 3rd year taking part. The concert is made up of choirs from different schools

around the country and some main artists who perform on the main stage. It’s a very long day but all the children love taking part in the event.

William O’Byrne is leaving st. mary’s “We are sad because William is leaving the school. He has been a teacher for 38 years. He teaches Maths & English and helps people to

speak Irish. William has been in the yard every morning from Monday to Friday with us. William is very very nice to people. He gives birthday

spikeball Trials and training for Spikeball will be held on Mondays after school from 2.30—3.30 in our sports hall. Our school team have made it to the All Ireland Finals for the last 2 years in a row. Best of Luck to all teams this year. 08

angels to people on their birthday. We will miss you William.”

From all the students at St. Marys SNS



Capture the Power Egle Butkute now in 3rd Year in the Community College displayed great talent in the area of photography last year. She won 1st prize in the 12 to 15 years category in the Bord Gáis Energy Capture the Power competition for her photograph entitled “Girl”. The Bord Gáis Energy Capture the Power competition was open to students of all ages across Irish primary and secondary schools. It encouraged talented young photographers to capture unique moments and has selected some of the brightest young stars in photography from all over the country.

“Girl” by Egle Butkute

Wicklow VEC Environmental Awareness Programme Competition 2010 Over the next few weeks students will be preparing for the Wicklow VEC Environmental Awareness Programme Competitions. The school was very successful last year when 5th Year Art class students Mary Lynch, Louise Gibbons, and Marie Archbold picked up 2nd place in the Cultural section. The girls picked up the prize on behalf of their class mates. The presentation took place in the Brochagh Centre in Larragh Village where an exhibition of the work of 10 VEC schools was on display. The standard of projects was

extremely high. Mary, Louise and Marie received the prize for a wall mural the 5th Year Art class painted in the Junior National School Library. The mural depicts a book which explodes on the wall and characters from well known children’s books are thrown all around the wall. The characters were selected from drawings done by the primary school pupils from their favourite books. Carmel Dillon, Principal of the Junior NS said she was “delighted by the news of the win”.

To advertise call 087 6430519 or Email: 09



Athletics in Blessington Community College Blessington Community College is looking forward to an exciting year in the area of sport, building on the successes of last year. Before the Summer break in the Wicklow athletics in Greystones, BCC had 28 Students participating throughout the day in a variety of events from 800m, 100m, Javelin, Shot Putt, High Jump and Relays. Thomas Donohoe from 3rd year started off the day in flying form to win gold in his 800m. Louise Gibbons also had a strong run in her U.20’s 800m finish-


ing in a very good 3rd place. Oisin WardHalford was next up in the U.15’s Javelin and had a very close competition only losing out on the Gold by a few metres but picked up the Silver Medal. Josh Gray took part in the U.14’s boys Shot Putt where he put in a fine performance and came a very good second with a throw of 8 metres 43 cm. The schools’ two Senior U.20’s girls and boy’s relay teams had to battle hard to earn a bronze in each relay event.

To advertise call 087 6430519 or Email:



halloween RECIPEs


This is a traditional Irish dish associated with Halloween, which makes use of a great winter vegetable. The floury quality of the Rooster is particularly suitable for this recipe.


Steam or boil the potatoes, then in Irish fashion, drain them well in a colander or strainer and cover with a clean tea towel for a few minutes to dry out. Meanwhile, cook the cabbage in a little water until tender, then drain it, add 25g (1oz) of the butter and season with some salt and pepper. Chop the spring onions including a lot of the dark green part and cook with the milk, in a small saucepan, until tender. Mash the potatoes, season well with salt and pepper and a little mace. Add the cabbage and the spring onions with enough of the milk to make a nice soft mixture. Pile into a warm serving dish. Shape a little hole in the top and put the remaining butter into this where it will melt deliciously.

source: 12


900g (2lbs) Rooster potatoes 225g (8oz) cabbage, shredded finely 75g (3oz) butter salt and freshly ground black pepper quarter teaspoon ground mace (optional) 4-5 spring onions (or 1 onion, sliced) 150ml (quarter pt) milk

did you know? Charms hidden in bowls of Colcannon were said to be good luck symbols for unmarried women who found them. Some women filled their socks with colcannon and hung them by the front door on Halloween believing that the first unmarried man through the door would become their future husband.



How to Play:

Fill in the grid so that every row, every column, and every 3x3 box contains the digits 1 through 9, with no repitition! Solving the problem takes reason and logic!

Solution on Page 25 13


in cinemas


Reviews by Colm Geoghegan

15 cert

Directed by John Erick Dowdle. Starring Chris Messina Bojana Novakovic, Bokeem Woodbine Logan Marshall-Green, Jenny O’Hara. Out Now, 80 minutes

Okay let’s get it out of the way first. As much as it doesn’t deserve it this film will suffer for one major reason. Got it? That’s right, it hinges on a story by M. Night Shyamalan who started high on the Hollywood ladder with The Sixth Sense only to come crashing down to earth in the last few years with box office stinkers like The Happening and the more recent The Last Airbender. Personally I generally like his films. Maybe he is a one trick pony but hey, it’s a good trick. Devil is the first entry of three in The Night Chronicles (okay, okay, fuel for the critical fire I know) but you have to admit it’s got a nice retro vibe to it. Actually so does the film which tells the story of five strangers trapped together inside an elevator in a skyscraper, unaware that one of

them is not what they appear to be. The first thing that springs to mind when viewing Devil is how much it feels like a Twilight Zone episode. From John Eric Dowdles direction to the thundering brass of Fernando Velázquez’s score it seems like the 80’s revival is well under way. Break out the shoulder pads! The cast of relatively unknown actors sink their teeth into the parts with the most memorable being Geoffrey Arend as a sleazy salesman on his way to a meeting in the building. Arend’s bug eyed creepiness is reminiscent of a young Jeff Goldblum. Also a special mention for Bokeem Woodbine who, although has never been of leading man status is an always reliable presence on screen. His turn as a security guard with a mysterious background is as good as any A-Lister today. The thing that really lifts this little horror

mystery though is the cinematography of Tak Fujimoto. Tight close ups in the elevator scenes contrasting with the wide shots of the outside world work exceptionally well here. A recurring use of power outages in the elevator serves to increase the claustrophobia. This gives Fujimoto his chance to disorientate the audience with panicked camera movements and a heavy dose of cabin fever. The ending falls a little flat and most will guess the inevitable twist from around 10 minutes in but it doesn’t detract from the enjoyable, well paced events leading up to it. All in all, Devil is a solid film. It may punch above it’s weight from time to time and clearly takes the spirituality aspect of the story a little too seriously but if you want a good old fashioned scare you could do alot worse. I look forward to The Night Chronicles 2. CG

All Movies reviewed at Storm Cinemas, Naas, Co. Kildare For more info visit: 14


in cinemas

the hole 3d

Reviews by Colm Geoghegan

15 cert

The Hole heralds the return of an old school legend. Joe Gremlins Dantes’ first film since 2003 is a return to form for the master of dark family friendly horror. It centres around the simple premise of a single mother and her two sons moving from their troubled past in New York City to the quiet town of Bensonville. Of course things aren’t what they seem and when the brothers, accompanied by the pretty girl next door, stumble upon an eerie bottomless hole in the basement of their new home all hell, literally, breaks loose. This ingenious little film is a throwback to everything

the other guys Your enjoyment of this film will depend on one thing. Your tolerance for Mr. Will Ferrell. Personally I think the man is hilarious with Anchorman ranked high in my collection. Director Adam Mckay again lets Ferrell loose here to impart his unique brand of improvised humour and it works a treat. Detectives Allen Gamble (Will Ferrell) and Terry Hoitz (Mark Wahlberg) have always been the guys in the background overshadowed by supercops Danson & Manzetti (played hilariously OTT by Dwayne The Rock Johnson & Samuel L. Jackson. But when an opportunity arises

Dante did right in his early career. Never crossing into schmaltz, he keeps the perfect balance of light and dark. The brothers Chris Massoglia as the older Dane and Nathan Gamble as little Lucas Thompson have a ball with the script, as does Haley Bennett with her turn as the feisty Julie Campbell. The use of the Real3D technique is a massive plus here and proves, finally, that it’s more than just a gimmick. Funny and scary in equal parts it’s a perfect “My First Horror” for the youngsters whilst retaining enough fun and frights to keep the veterans happy. CG

Directed by joe dante. Starring Teri Polo Chris Massoglia, Haley Bennett Out Now, 98 minutes

12 cert for The Other Guys to step up things go from bad to worse. The real surprise here is Wahlbergs comedic flair. His portrayal of Detective Hoitz is filled with dead pan humour and his timing is spot on. The chemistry between him and Ferrell is undeniable. Unfortunately though where the film is let down is in McKay’s insistence of crowbarring in a convoluted plot. You get the impression he’s vying to be taken seriously but all it does here is throw the rhythm of this otherwise decent comedy off. Still it’s a hell of a lot better than the recent Bruce Willis stinker Cop Out. CG

Directed by ADAM MCKAY. Starring Will Ferrell Mark Wahlberg, Eva Mendes Samuel L. Jackson. Out Now, 107 minutes 15


Your top FIVE horror movies

it’s alive!

You voted. We counted. Here are the TOP FIVE HORROR MOVIES as picked by our friends on FACEBOOK


Masami (Hitomi Sato) and Tomoko (Yuko Takeuchi), two teenagers, come across a video tape that is said to kill the viewer seven days after watching it unless the mystery behind the images are solved. From this fantastic premise, Hideo Nakata delivered one of the most spine chilling rides in recent years. It plays on peoples basic fears. Truly terrifying. You won’t look at the television in the same way again.



Takashi Shimizu directs this creepy tale of a vengeful spirit that haunts anyone exposed to it until they are dead before passing to its next victim. Frightening to the last frame, Shimizu’s sharp direction coupled with the ever looming sense of dread make this one of the best films of the now overdone J-Horror movement. Along with Ringu it cemented Japanese horror as a force to be reckoned with.


The chilling tale of a young girl possessed by the Devil had audiences vomiting in the aisles back in the early 70’s . Although not as shocking as it once was, the film has stood the test of time and has since garnered a new generation of fans. Iconic Imagery, stunning effects and a cast who wring every last drop of emotion out of their performance keep this slow burner as appealing as ever. Give it time to work it’s magic.

02 16




The most recognisable and Iconic of all the Horror Movie Boogeymen, Freddy Krueger is the poster child of the genre. Burnt alive by the parents of the children he murdered, he exacts revenge by stalking them in their dreams. Diluted over the years by cheesy sequels, Wes Craven’s original may seem a little easy to poke fun at now but in 1984 it truly was the stuff of nightmares. It still remains one of the greatest Horror Movies of our time.


it’s alive! - Your top FIVE horror movies



“Vile, ugly and brutal.” “Despicable, Sadistic.” “a backwoods masterpiece of fear and loathing, Texas style.” “the authentic quality of a nightmare.” All of these vivid examples have been used to describe what has come to be known as the greatest horror film ever made. Tobe Hooper’s punishing and gruelling 70’s exploitation flick has been the inspiration for many of the best known horrors films since. Ridley Scott cited the film as an inspiration for his own feature Alien, as did John Carpenter when working on Halloween. Even more recently, Rob Zombie claimed it’s influence over his own House of 1000 Corpses. So what makes it so special? Surely just another hack and slasher? Well, no, not at all. This is a film about fear, suspense, isolation and hopelessness. It’s not intended to make you feel at ease and it doesn’t. Based loosely on the legend of serial killer Ed Gein and taking the “wrong turn in the middle of nowhere” route, this grubby slab of horror

redefined the genre. Granted, the format has been run into the ground since it’s outing in 1974 with the likes of The Hills Have Eyes, Wrong Turn, etc. but it still doesn’t blunt the force of Hooper’s movie. These days film makers spend millions trying to get their projects to look as bleak as this. At times it feels like your watching a Snuff film. It may feel saggy around the middle but this is only to accentuate the horrors of the second half not detract from them. And it works. It’s a masterclass in building dread. And that dread comes with a dirty, blunt chainsaw. The original Iconic villian, Leather Face paved the way for the likes of Freddy Krueger, Michael Myers, et al. We’ve since seen the Michael Bay owned Platinum Dunes Company try their hand at recreating the original with their respectable if a little glossy 2003 retread and it’s appalling origins based sequel: TTCM: The Beginning but for sheer, goosebump inducing fear Hooper’s superior chiller hacks up it’s imitators everytime.

bring the horror home this halloween! Being Halloween and all, the kind people at THE GOGGLE BOX Video Store in Blessington have given us a real treat to give away to one lucky winner. The Amityville Horror double dvd set, Hellraiser 1&2 AND The Grudge Boxset containing The Grudge 1&2 AND The Return!

To be in with a chance of winning just answer the following question:

“Who plays the character of George Lutz in the original Amityville Horror?” Email your Answer along with your Name & Address to: Closing Date for Entries: Friday 22nd October. The Winner will be notified by email. PLEASE NOTE: ALL ENTRANTS MUST BE 18 OR OVER



profile - storm cinemas

by Colm Geoghegan

brewing up a storm Many years ago there was a rumour in Blessington. A rumour that had me quite excited. Apparently, a cinema was going to be built. Thinking back now fills me with quiet disappointment as it never came to fruition. In the meantime, more Cinemas have popped up all over the country. Some great and some awful. Then about four years ago Storm Cinemas announced they would be expanding the chain to Naas, a stones throw from our little corner of the world. Since then I’ve been to Storm more times than I can remember and each time I’ve enjoyed the experience more and more. For the purpose of this magazine I was recently offered the opportunity to come and sit for some screenings for our In Cinemas section. I was greeted on a Friday morning by Leo Moore - the General Manager and Colette Kennelly Marketing Ireland for Storm. I had spoken to Leo previously by email and it was great to meet him in person. He’s been in the business himself for about 8 years and has been with Storm, Naas since July this year. Both were extremely helpful and hospitable and it was an absolute pleasure to meet them. The same goes for Agneta AlungoDuty Manager. Her friendly and accommodating manner was refreshing and she made sure I was well looked after. That’s the thing that makes Storm so different. You get the sense that staff and management alike take great pride in the place and the name. From the moment you step through the doors into the foyer it’s gleaming. Kudos to the cleaning staff for running such a tight ship.

Unlike some other cinemas (which I won’t mention), there’s no chewing gum waiting to attach itself to the sole of your shoe and no spilt drinks gluing you to certain areas of the floor. It really is spotless. Impressive too are the screens themselves. I recently had the good fortune of viewing a film on the largest screen and it was a wonderful experience. The seats are comfy (no back problems afterwards) and tiered so no chance of watching the back of someones head for an hour and a half. Even the smallest screen is big enough to ensure you are getting value for money and the 3D films shine thanks to the latest projection equipment. The sound too is top notch with no hissing or distortion distracting you from your viewing. The staff create a uniquely warm atmosphere not prevalent in many cinemas of late. I actually remember when I phoned to book tickets for The Dark Knight a few years ago. A call that I thought would last roughly 30 seconds ended up being about 5 minutes as I bantered with a particularly amiable staff member about everything from the merits of Heath Ledger’s performance to the blistering action set pieces in the Batman sequel. It was great. Like having a chat with a friend over a pint. This guy knew his stuff! And that’s what you realise when your there. These people love film and are all about customer care and service. To them it’s about making your day or evening as enjoyable as possible. So next time you plan on making a trip to the flicks, make it to your local Storm Cinema in Naas. You won’t be disappointed!



computers / phones / gadgets

by I.T. Monkey

Internet Security With all the scary stuff out there on the Internet today, it’s time to take a look at some simple (and free) options available to protect ourselves and our families and ensure that surfing the web is a safe and happy experience.

Viruses & Malware

How many of us spend money every year on products like Norton, McAfee etc when Microsoft provides a comprehensive anti-virus package completely free of charge. Microsoft Security Essentials is simple to install, updates itself automatically and protects your PC from viruses & malware. You can download it

Web Filtering

We all know that the Internet is a wonderful facility but wouldn’t it be great if we could manage exactly what our children are exposed to. K9 Web Protection is free parental control software for Windows and Mac computers to help you provide a safe Internet experience for your family. It’s really easy to set up and you can find it at

Cleaning Your Computer

Sometimes no matter what you do your computer gets hit with some unwanted malware. Before you panic it’s worth running Malware Bytes on your PC to see if it can solve the problem for you. It’s a very powerful tool that we use ourselves and it doesn’t cost a cent. You can download it from - If you’d like to comment on this article or if there’s anything we can do for your home or business please contact us at or call us on 045 855761.

To advertise call 087 6430519 or Email: 19



planning for tomorrow Blessington & District Credit Union was established in July 1973 and membership requires that its members live or work in the areas of Blessington, Brittas, Manor Kilbride, Lacken, Valleymount, Hollywood and Donard. These areas are known as the common bond of the Credit Union. Blessington & District Credit Union is a community based, non profit making financial co-operative which is member owned and controlled, and whose philosophy is based


on sound principles of equity, equality and mutual self help. It is primarily a service organisation that exists to empower people to help themselves thereby improving the quality of their own lives and the community as a whole.

Membership currently stands at 8000 with Shares of €30m, loans out in the community to the value of €17m, and Assets of €37m in 2010. The Management structure comprises 13 Directors, 3 Supervisors, 9 members of Staff and various committees.

Starting College this year? WOULD €3000 HELP? Blessington & District Credit Union Limited is offering a Scholarship for the 12th Year Details at Credit Union House

Phone 045-865328 or Download the Application form at: Closing Date: Friday 8th October 2010

To advertise call 087 6430519 or Email: 21



by Amanda Tivnan


The sweetest thing In 2009, according to the World Health Organization, more than 220 million people worldwide and an estimated 141,000 adults in the Republic of Ireland were diagnosed with diabetes [1]. Considering the prevalence of this chronic disease, it is important to be informed about the causes and symptoms of this condition so as to better prevent, or perhaps manage, and treat diabetes on a daily basis. The foremost question is “what is diabetes?”  The basic principle is that insulin is a hormone that regulates blood sugar in the body and diabetes occurs either when not enough insulin is produced or when the body cannot effectively use the insulin it does produce. Raised blood sugar is a common effect of uncontrolled diabetes and, if left untreated, may lead to serious damage of the body’s systems. Although there are various forms of the disease, there are two main types, Type 1 and Type 2. Type 1 diabetes is when insulin is not being produced efficiently and requires daily injections; while Type 2 diabetes results when the body cannot effectively use the insulin it does produce. Both types have quite similar symptoms; including thirst, constant hunger, weight loss, vision changes, tingling or numbness in the hands, legs or feet and fatigue. In people suffering with Type 1 diabetes, these symptoms may occur suddenly; while those with Type 2 tend have less severe symptoms and therefore the disease may not be diagnosed for several years, and usually not until complications have already arisen. Notably, 90% of people with diabetes have Type 2. As with many diseases, diabetes can be readily managed through vigilance and interaction with your GP. However, if left untreated, it may lead to increased risks of several complications within the body, increasing the risk of heart disease and stroke; and combined with reduced blood flow, increases the chance of foot ulcers. Diabetic retinopathy occurs as a result of longterm accumulated damage to the small blood 22

vessels in the eye. After 15 years of chronic diabetes, approximately 10% may develop severe visual impairment. Untreated diabetes is also highly associated with kidney failure and diabetic neuropathy (damage to the nerves as a result of diabetes). Simple lifestyle measures have been shown to be effective in preventing or delaying the onset of Type 2 diabetes. As with normal day-to-day health, achieving and maintaining a healthy body weight is priority– at least 30 minutes of regular, moderate activity on most days in combination with a healthy diet. Additionally, early diagnosis can ensure avoidance of severe complications and can be accomplished through relatively inexpensive blood testing if concerned. The main objective in treating diabetes is to minimise any increase of blood sugar without causing abnormally low levels, a balancing act of sorts. Maintaining a diabetic diet is an important aspect of controlling elevated blood sugar in patients with diabetes; and weight reduction and exercise increase the body’s sensitivity to insulin, thus helping to control blood sugar elevations. The good news is that with proper care, people with diabetes can lead normal, satisfying lives. Much of this care is “self-managed,” meaning that if you have this condition, you must take day-to-day responsibility for your own care under the advisement of your medical practitioner. As is the case with many conditions, the most important way to managing the disease is to know as much about it as you can.  “Diabetes is but a hobby that I didn’t choose for myself, but is mine to have forever.” Anon [1] Diabetes Federation of Ireland



Caring for the Elderly Care-At-home are a Kildare & West Wicklow based home care provider, offering help in caring for the elderly or disabled person in the comfort of their own home.

The company was established in 2005 and was the first of its kind in the area to offer clients and families this unique type of home care service. The founder of the service Maggie Edwards has a strong nursing background and the inspiration behind the birth of the service was founded on the notion

that Independent living can be achieved with as little help as 2 hours a day home care. Care-at-Home Services Ltd offers a wide range of services, which include day and night care services 7 days per week 365 days a year. In the last 5 years the company has grown and developed, expanding in its geographical coverage in the County. There specially selected care staff can help with bathing / showering, dressing. Meal preparation, medication reminding, Shopping, washing and laundry, accompanying clients to appointments and social outings, as well as

providing valuable supervision and companionship. Staying at home surrounded by family and friends is expressed by our clients as their preferred care option‌with a little assistance we can make this possible. If you require additional information in regards to Care-at-home services ltd you can contact the office on: Ph: 045 876052 or call the care managers on Mob: 087 2068079 / 087 44 68 0309 email:




blessington lakes garden centre Blessington Lakes Garden Centre has been serving the local community for the last 30 years. We are located , just south of Blessington on the N81 next to Russborough House.

Our aim is to provide quality plants and good advice. Plants, compost, fencing, garden pots and tools are mostly sourced in Ireland and offered at reasonable prices. We always stock a wide variety of shrubs and trees. For every season we offer what is needed; bedding and vegetables in spring and summer, bulbs in the autumn, Christmas trees in December, bare root trees and hedging in the winter. Almost all bedding is grown in our own tunnels so we can guarantee healthy affordable plants. We specialize in fruit and vegetable growing. In spring we stock a huge variety of seed potatoes, vegetable seeds, onion sets and vegetable plants. We further supply everything else you might need such as manure, composts and organic products. Plants and knowledge are our forte. Our friendly staff have been with us for years and are well qualified to give advice. Drop in and see us! 24



Rhythm Is A Dancer Sinead O’Brien Dance School is now in its ninth year, and has classes in Blessington, Hollywood and Dunlavin. The classes cater for all ages from 3 to 18 years and include a wide range of dance styles from Tap and Hip Hop to Musical Theatre; all new students are very welcome. All classes will be preparing for the 7th annual Stage production, this year it will be “One Night


Only” and will take place in The New Theatre in the St. Marys senior N.S. Blessington on the 23rd Oct. For specific information in relation to class times and dates contact Sinead @ 0872924559. Sinead is from Blessington and has been dancing since she was 8 yrs old, training in many dance disciplines before she graduated from the National College of Dance in 2001; in 2002 she went to further train in the Broadway Dance Centre in

New York. She has been teaching in Blessington since 2001 and has been performing with Alan Hughes of TV 3 fame, in Dublin Pantomime since she was 16. She has also performed in several TV shows and numerous stage productions. Sinead’s passion is teaching and she loves to pass on her years of experience to the younger lakeside community. She has high hopes that this year’s show and classes will be the best yet.

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what’s going on? - your guide to upcoming local events


Why not try out Yoga Pilates and fitness classes for free at Body Evolution which is situated over Dunnes Stores Blessington. There is an open day taking place there on Saturday October 16. Prior to that on Saturday October 9 back by popular demand there will be a guided tour and yoga morning. All interested should meet at Body Evolution at 10 am. It will finish around 1 pm.


Blessington Country Market which is still going strong after over forty years is open for business every Saturday afternoon in St. Kevin’s Community Centre Blessington from 2.30 pm – 3.30 pm. There is always a wide range of fresh cakes, fruit, jams, vegetables, flowers and lots more. So if you have not paid them a visit why not drop along this coming Saturday and check out what they have on offer. You will not be disappointed.


Blessington Citizen’s Information Centre has resumed after the summer holidays. It is open every Tuesday morning at Blessington Library from 10.30 am -1.30 pm. The centre offers residents free and confidential advice on a wide range of issues including such things as Social Welfare, Tax, Finance, Work, Family Entitlements, Health and much more. So if you would like some advice why not drop in some Tuesday morning.


Blessington Soccer Club will be holding a Dinner Dance in Tulfarris Hotel Baltyboys Blessington on Saturday November 6 with tickets priced at €40. Music on the night will be supplied by the popular Panoramics. All enquiries for tickets should be made to any committee member or any of the team managers.



No doubt about it we would all love a brand new car. Well members of Blessington & District Credit Union have a great chance to win one in their members car draws which take place throughout the year. The next draw is due to take place in November at their Annual General Meeting. Entry entitles you to be in with a chance in all the draws throughout the calendar year. Entry details are available from Credit Union House Blessington or on their website


what’s going on? - your guide to upcoming local events


The very popular Car Boot Sale is coming your way on Sunday October 10 to St. Kevin’s Community Centre Blessington commencing at 10 am. There will as usual be lots of stalls carrying a wide range of bargains just waiting to be snapped up by you the punter. Those wishing to open up a stall can do so on the day. A car load will cost only €10 while a vanload will set you back only €15. Those wishing to open up a stall can just come along on the day. But make sure to get there early as it can be very crowded. Car boot sales are a great excuse to clear out the garage and attic of those unwanted items that have been stored away for a rainy day. It is also a marvellous way to make a nice few euros which you can put to some good use. So make sure to drop along on the day and check out all the bargains.


St.Kevin’s Community Centre has a wide range of activities for all age groups. The centre is open each week from MondaySaturday and with the long winter nights coming up on the horizon why not check them out. All enquires to st.kevins@ or telephone 045 901547.


Boystown Bridge Club situated in the golf club meet every Wednesday night at 7.45 pm and they are always are on the lookout for some new members. Further information can be got if you telephone 086 8246721 or just come along any Wednesday night. All are most welcome.



halloween safety

Danger in disguise If I were a witch upon a big switch A riding through the air. I’d fly all around, then drop to the ground And give you an awful scare....... Halloween (All-Hallows-Eve) has its roots in the Celtic festival of Samhain and the Christian holiday of All Saints’ Day. A time of fancy dress parties, over-active imaginations, sweets, fizzy drinks and creative use of black bin liners! However, every year, at this time, accident and emergency departments are filled with children and adults who receive horrific injuries from illegal fireworks and bonfires. While serious accidents have resulted from using fireworks, the law only covered their importation into Ireland without a licence and was therefore more a customs and excise issue rather than a criminal issue. Since legislation was amended in 2006, if you ignite a firework or cause it to be ignited in any place, including the garden of a private house and not just in public, you are guilty of an offence. This is also the case if you have fireworks with the intention of selling or supplying to someone else (and you don’t hold a licence to import it). Despite this fact, the continuing purchase from Northern Ireland renders fireworks a potential hazard to which children, adults and pets in the republic may be exposed to this Halloween. Although bonfires should be fully planned and authorised by your local authority and fire department, the site of burning piers of wood and tyres is something which still litters the skyline on October 31st. A prerequisite for permission and organisation is to ensure the safety and enjoyment of all attendees and also minimise any harmful effects to the environment. Those responsible for illegal bonfires can often use flammable liquids like paraffin or petrol to ‘get it

going’, which can result in uncontrolled spread of fire or explosion. Dangerous rubbish (e.g. aerosols, paint tins or foam-filled furniture) are often included as a means of rubbish disposal; all of which increase the potential for harm on a night which should be enjoyable for all involved. Halloween is a fun time, but can be a frightening and stressful time for your pets. As a pet owner, you know your pet best, but there are some points to consider for your pet’s safety; continual doorbell ringing and people at the door (in costume!) can be stressful for a pet. Some pets may experience stress-related diarrhoea, unexpected aggression or fear. Candles and Jack-O’Lanterns within a pet’s range are a fire hazard as wagging tails and frightened cats can easily tip over a candle or carved pumpkin, causing burns or a fire. Many pets have a sweet tooth but please warn children not to share their goodies with the family pet as sweets, gums, mints, baked goods and chocolate containing the “sugar free” sweetener xylitol are especially poisonous, causing rapid hypoglycaemia (low blood sugar) and liver failure in dogs. Unfortunately, Halloween is also linked to increased instances of animal cruelty and so it is recommended to keep your pet in a quiet and safe place on Halloween. Keeping safety in mind, Halloween can be filled with fun and excitement for adults and kids alike.

To advertise call 087 6430519 or Email: 28




nick cantwell electrical ltd

Nick Cantwell Electrical, your local Electrician, has been established since 2008. We offer a wide range of Electrical services from installing a simple light fitting to full scale electrical installations for example; security lighting, electric showers, housewiring, re-wiring, extensions, maintenance, commercial & light industrial. Simply any Electrical requirement! Nick Cantwell Electrical has over 16 years experience in the area and is a fully registered and insured member


of ECSSA and Safe Electric. By calling Nick Cantwell Electrical you are assured of receiving a comprehensive assessment with a personal, professional & efficient service and steadfast results. Having a wide customer base and a wealth of experience in the industry our reputation precedes us. Our continued aim is to provide all our customers this high quality service. With costs around us rising on an on-going basis we all find ourselves trying to save that extra euro wherever we can.

We can advise on cost-saving measures to combat these issues for example; time-clocks on heating and hot-water, l.e.d. and energy saving light fittings and bulbs (which are easily replaced), advice on installation of night-saver meters etc. So next time you find yourself in the dark just pick up that phone and call your Local and reliable Electrician, Nick. He will be sure to shed some light on it! Nick Cantwell Electrical Ltd Crosscool Harbour Contact Nick: 087 9457732


Blessington Magazine - Oct 2010 - Issue 1  

Issue 1 - October - 2010

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