On Friday 8th of August, the Le Chéile Rose took place in the Village Inn, Enniskeane in Co. Cork. Organised by Ballineen Foróige Club, this charity event in aid of the Irish Kidney Association saw seven enthusiastic and inspirational ladies take to the stage, each representing a local business or organisation. As part of their annual citizenship project, Ballineen Foróige Club decided to revive this event which first took place in 1995 and has not been held for 14 years.
The event was based on the Rose of Tralee Festival. Each Rose was interviewed on stage and then asked to perform a showpiece. Each interview was packed with controversy, jokes and embarrassing moments, ranging from a story about Kerry footballers, driving home and forgetting your children, amongst others! C103’s Paudie Palmer as MC very effectively quizzed the Roses on their hopes and dreams, past experiences and their motivations in life.
Ballineen Foróige would like to thank the wonderful judging panel who had an extremely difficult and challenging task to pick a winner. Denis O’Brien, National Volunteer Manager with Foróige; Valerie O’Shea, contestant in this year’s Cork Rose (and fashion designer); and Ted O’Neill, from the Irish Kidney Association carried out their roles very diligently.
In the end, as we all know, there could only be one winner and after much deliberation , Ella Ryan from Gaggin (representing Enniskeane Post Office) was crowned Le Chéile Rose 2014. She was presented with a beautiful bouquet of flowers, a vase from Waterford Crystal and prize money which was all well deserved. Ella stole the crowd with her rendition of “Wagon Wheel”.
Ella says, “It was a fantastic experience to be involved in this year’s Le Chéile Rose. These young people are a credit to their community for organising such a successful event. I'd like to thank my sponsor Mary Nolan of Enniskeane Post Office for giving me the opportunity to be a part of such a worthy cause. It is my intention to be involved in charity events in the community throughout the year and hopefully go on to the Cork Rose Contest in 2015. Well done to all of the beautiful Roses who represented their sponsors/businesses excellently and provided the audience with great entertainment on the night. Congrats to everyone involved.”
The night didn’t end with the announcement of the winner and entertainment was provided by popular band "The Hoots".
Jenny Warren from Coppeen representing the Lantern Takeaway described the competition as “a great experience”, which she enjoyed every minute of. She pointed out that “all the other Roses were fantastic and the judges were genuine and lovely to talk to”. She would like to thank Áine Jennings for doing her hair and all her supporters who made banners and were in attendance on the night.
Saoirse Browne, competing for Cronin Creations only decided to compete at the last minute. “I would like to say that I enjoyed taking part as a Rose. It was a fun night with great community spirit. I feel it was great to raise awareness for the charity, hopefully people will be more open to the idea of becoming organ donors”.
As our only non-Corkconian Rose, Rebecca Egan bravely took to the stage, performing a personal adaptation of Junipers Monologue from "Tomorrows Wish" by Wade Bradford. “As the only 'outside'/'blow-in' rose, I didn't know what to expect from the community. I was delighted to represent Ballineen Foróige who sponsored me for the evening. It was truly entertaining and one of the most enjoyable evenings I've had. The community welcomed me with such warmth and kindness and many people approached me throughout the evening to say hello or wish me well or say fair play regarding my performance”.
Lisa Cronin representing Carbery Group said, “I'm delighted to have represented my company after all they've done for me in the past five months and I'd like to thank everyone who supported me throughout the experience”.
Cadhla Tanner, representing Centra, Enniskeane, said, “My experience of the Le Chéile Rose was truly amazing. The support from Cronin Creations and Centra was fantastic! I still have people coming into the shop saying what a great night they had.”
Our venue for the evening, the Village Inn, also interred a Rose. Amy O’Driscoll is a vibrant and passionate individual who represented her business and family brilliantly on the night.
A massive thank you must go to all the club leaders, Daniel Cronin, Colm O’Sullivan, Sheila O’Neill, Anna O’Driscoll and Saoirse Browne. Also, a big thank you to GP Wood, the main sponsors of the event. Without them, the night would not have been so successful. And finally, a thank you must go to the Village Inn for supplying the function room and taking photographs. In the end, over €1,000 was raised for the Irish Kidney Association.