The community of Kingscourt once again showed Irish hospitality at its best. Thirty German secondary school students were given a very warm welcome when they arrived in town on Monday the 3rd of September. This was the 2nd trip this year by Cara Language Link, the German-based organisation founded by Kingscourt native Sandra Carolan.
Blessed with good weather again the students took part in trips which included a combination of history, culture and lots of adventure. Orienteering in Dún na Rí Forest Park, climbing Lough an Leagh, followed by lunch in Cabra Castle hotel were among some of the entertainment offered. On Tuesday evening, the students experienced a Gaelic football match which took place in O’Raghallaigh Park and as an additional highlight local members of the Kingscourt Stars demonstrated some of the basic skills of the sport.
The students also went on a trip to Dublin and experienced an open-top bus tour of the city, as well as a visit to the picturesque village of Carlingford, Co. Louth. On Thursday, there was an evening of traditional Irish song, dance and music in the community centre. Local dancers and musicians showcased their talents while others including the German students sang ….. a real German-Irish “session” enjoyed by all.
Dancers from Scoil Rince Reanna performed for the students and who also got themselves involved in a bit of the “set” dancing.
The musical Smith family then followed up with a set of traditional Irish songs to finish up the evening and the last night of the students stay.
The leader of the group and teacher Regina Gunderson thanks the local host families in Kingscourt for their hospitality and said that she and the students were overhelmed by the welcome that they received.
Due to strikes by the German airline, Lufthansa, the group had to leave Kingscourt earlier than planned on Friday morning, though it must be said most of the children were hoping the strike would have gained them a few extra days in Kingscourt! Once again the warmth, charm and kindness of the people of Kingscourt, and in particular the host families, was to the fore. Thank you Kingscourt, see you all next year!