Mooney, Thursday June 26th 2014
USA v Germany
For the last fortnight, World Cup fever has been gripping those living in the United States of America, and Americans abroad. This evening at 5pm, the USA face Germany in a rain-soaked Recife in game that has Americans super-excited! Even the USA coach Jurgen Klinsmann has posted a tongue-in-cheek plea on Twitter for bosses to let their employees take today off to support the team!
This morning, our reporter Brenda Donohue went along to the American College in Dublin to find out where students there will be watching the match.
And for the take from the States, we're joined on the line by Louthman Tommy Smyth (with a Y!), who has spent the past 20 years with the ESPN soccer team in the USA, working as a soccer colour commentator and analyst...
Opera Singing Waiters
It's been an amazing World Cup so far, an absolute goal-fest. The only thing that would make it better for us would be the participation of the Republic of Ireland!
The last time we qualified for a major championship was back in 2011, when Giovanni Trapattoni was at the helm. We beat Estonia, in November 2011, and went on to Euro 2012, which was hosted by Poland and Ukraine.
To celebrate our qualification, we invited the Irish manager, Giovanni Trapattoni, his assistant, Marco Tardelli, and FAI chief executive, John Delaney, to join us at Mooney Tunes 5, on the stage at the Bord Gáis Energy Theatre, in December of 2011.
Now, if you've been to any of our ten Mooney Tunes concerts, you will know that absolutely anything can happen!
And at Mooney Tunes 5, as Derek was having a very civil conversation with Giovanni and John, he was rudely interrupted by a man in the audience, who wanted his picture taken with the legendary Giovanni.
The man was Niall Morris, who along with James Edwards, and Simon Morgan, is a member of the Opera Waiters. And as you can tell, they’re not just a trio of fine singers, they can act as well!
The Opera Singing Waiters in their current line up are Niall Morris, Lynsey Curtin and David Lynn, and to mark the occasion of the USA's crucial World Cup game against Germany tonight (5pm) we invited them into studio to perform a couple of "appropriate/timely" tunes!
The Opera Waiters are performing at Loughcrew Opera Feast, in Oldcastle in Co. Meath on July 11th, 12th & 13th. We have two free tickets for dinner and the show for Friday, July 11th. To enter, just answer the following question:
The aria Nessun Dorma comes from which opera by Puccini?
Send your name and answer to 51551. You have until 4 o’clock to enter. We will pick a winner at random and we’ll let you know who that is after 4pm today.
***THIS COMPETITION HAS NOW CLOSED***
Thank-you to everyone who entered, and congratulations to our winner George Peterson from Dun Laoghaire, Co. Dublin!
For more details about the Opera Singing Waiters, click here, for info about Niall visit www.niallmorris.com, and for more information about the Loughcrew Opera Feast, click here.
In November, Niall will also be paying tribute to Maria Callas in a show called Callas: The Life & Music of Maria Callas, with Mairéad Buicke as Callas, as well as James Edwards and Simon Morgan. It takes place in the National Concert Hall on Sunday, November 16th.
The Journey's On Us 2014
For the past two years, Mooney have teamed up with Irish Rail for their "The Journey's On Us" giveaway. As part of this initiative, Iarnród Éireann will provide 100 groups with free return rail for up to 50 people per group.
It's a brilliant initiative and what we found over the last two years is it provides a fantastic day out for community, voluntary and charity groups.
Mooney reporter Brenda Donohue is in Céannt Railway Station in Galway for the launch of The Journey’s On Us 2014
PRESS RELEASE: THE JOURNEY’S ON US!
IARNRÓD ÉIREANN TO OFFER FREE TRIPS FOR COMMUNITY, VOLUNTARY & CHARITY GROUPS IN 2014
Iarnród Éireann Irish Rail has launched the 2014 programme for The Journey’s On Us, an initiative to support organisations and groups in the voluntary, community, sporting and charity sector.
"The Journey's On Us" will provide 100 groups with a free group travel return journey for up to 50 people per group during 2014, meaning 5,000 free journeys are on offer across the company's services. The travel facilities will be ideal in particular for organisations bringing a group to a special event, or as part of a specific support to the members of the group which requires travel.
Iarnród Éireann Chief Executive David Franks said "Voluntary organisations are the life blood of communities across the country. However, like everyone, their budgets have been cut. We know there are youth, sports, music, voluntary, charity and other groups in the community who would benefit greatly from being able to undertake initiatives which involve a travel cost, but have had to scale back. We in Iarnród Éireann, through The Journey's On Us, want to do what we can to help such groups achieve their goals, and say thank you to the organisations which play such a vital role in the daily lives of communities. The initiative is now in its third year with the interest and amount of groups applying has grown significantly each year, which we are absolutely delighted with."
The company has today invited all community, voluntary, sporting and charity groups to apply for the 100 group travel trips available. Entry forms are available at all Iarnród Éireann stations or online at www.irishrail.ie/journeys . Entry forms can be filled out online, emailed email@example.com or by post to Corporate Communications, Iarnród Éireann, Connolly Station, Dublin 1. The closing date for receipt of entries is Monday July 14th, at 16.30hrs.
Last year, over 750 groups applied for the scheme, and organisations ranging from Men's Sheds to choirs, Special Olympics to Girl Guides, and groups representing youth and elderly, benefited from "The Journey's On Us". Last year Iarnród Éireann offered for the first time a special prize for the winning group that submitted the most interesting and inspirational account of their day travelling with them. The winner of the prize was Special Hands Activity Group from Kelly, Co. Meath.
The initiative is being supported nationally by RTÉ Radio 1's Mooney, and Brenda Donohue is joining customers and staff at Ceannt Railway Station, Galway today to launch "The Journey's On Us" 2014. They were joined by Galway Community Circus who were a winner of one of the trips last year. Mooney will also feature successful groups throughout the year.
All applications will be considered by an adjudicating panel and successful groups will be notified from July onwards. For further information and to see terms and conditions please log onto www.irishrail.ie/journeys.
Hedgerows: It is an offence to 'cut, grub, burn or otherwise destroy hedgerows on uncultivated land during the nesting season from 1 March to 31 August, subject to certain exceptions'. For more information, click here.
UPDATE: February 29th 2016 - Press Release From BirdWatch Ireland:
Putting the record straight: Dates for burning and hedge-cutting have NOT changed
BirdWatch Ireland, Ireland’s largest conservation charity, is very concerned about misinformation that is currently circulating regarding the dates within which the burning of vegetation and cutting of hedges is permitted. It would like to remind landowners that all burning and cutting must cease on 29th February this year and that burning and cutting remains prohibited from 1st March to 31st August.
Despite attempts by the Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, Heather Humphreys T.D., to change the laws regulating these dates by introducing the Heritage Bill 2016 earlier this year, it is important to note that the proposed date changes were ultimately NOT made. This is because the bill failed to pass through both houses of the Oireachtas before the recent dissolution of the Dáil in advance of the general election.
The laws in place governing the dates for hedge-cutting and upland burning therefore remain unchanged. The period within which cutting and burning is prohibited are set down in Section 40 of the Wildlife Act 1976 (as amended in 2000), which states that:
(a) It shall be an offence for a person to cut, grub, burn or otherwise destroy, during the period beginning on the 1st day of March and ending on the 31st day of August in any year, any vegetation growing on any land not then cultivated.
(b) It shall be an offence for a person to cut, grub, burn or otherwise destroy any vegetation growing in any hedge or ditch during the period mentioned in paragraph (a) of this subsection (above).
The existing law provides exemptions for road safety and other circumstances and should be read carefully to ensure compliance.
Section 40 of the Wildlife Act exists to protect nesting birds. Many of our upland bird species are in decline and are in danger of extinction in Ireland; amongst them is the Curlew, which has declined by 80%. Many birds which nest in hedgerows into August are also in serious decline, including the endangered Yellowhammer. The changes to the cutting and burning dates which had been proposed in the now-defunct Heritage Bill 2016 would have caused serious impacts to these birds. A petition launched by BirdWatch Ireland in conjunction with several other national conservation organisations to stop these changes attracted more than 16,200 signatures and rising.
BirdWatch Ireland would also like to advise members of the public that if they see hedges being cut or fires in the uplands on or after 1st March, such activity could be illegal. In such cases, we would encourage people to contact the National Parks and Wildlife Service (www.npws.ie) to report such activity.
BirdWatch Ireland warmly welcomes the demise of the Heritage Bill 2016 and sincerely hopes that any future administration will consider the importance of Ireland’s natural heritage and will not attempt to reintroduce such a flawed and damaging piece of legislation.
To contact your local wildlife ranger, click here for contact details. To read the Wildlife (Amendment) Act 2000, click here.
Please DO NOT send any live, dead or skeletal remains of any creature whatsoever to Mooney Goes Wild.
If you find an injured animal or bird, please contact the National Parks & Wildlife Service on 1890 20 20 21, or BirdWatch Ireland, on 01 281-9878, or visit www.irishwildlifematters.ie