DESTINATION SPORT – MULLINGAR

A new and exciting sporting extravaganza – titled “Destination Sport–Mullingar” was officially launched in the Atrium of County Buildings, Mullingar, on Monday evening by Cllr. Fintan Cooney, Cathaoirleach of Westmeath County Council.

Cllr. Cooney told the large attendance,

“Westmeath County Council, Mullingar Town Council, Failte Ireland and Mullingar Chamber of Commerce in association with Westmeath Sports Partnership Ltd., Waterways Ireland and Co. Westmeath Tourism Ltd., and supported by participating sports clubs and other sporting interests in Mullingar, were delighted to be involved over the past number of months in co-ordinating the hosting of “Destination Sport-Mullingar” which will involve a week-long celebration of sport in Mullingar between the 12th and 20th June 2010.”

Destination Sport–Mullingar has grown out of the success of the sporting endeavours during National Bike Week in June 2009, when the Mullingar Criterium Cycle race was resurrected after a lapse of over 25 years. Later in 2009 during the Failte Ireland-led initiative “Discover Mullingar Day”, the very first “Sports Zone” was held in the grounds of Loreto College, Mullingar, affording the many participating sports clubs a unique opportunity to showcase their particular sport to the large audiences and where those attending also had the opportunity to try the various sports for themselves, in a fun way. Swimming & boating events also took place on the Royal Canal at Harbour Bridge.

Also in 2009, in a project involving Westmeath County Council, Fáilte Ireland and Waterways Ireland, Mullingar was established as a National Cycling Hub Town in line with Failte Ireland’s strategy to promote cycling tourism, aimed at attracting increased domestic and overseas tourism activity. The project also sought to renew the popularity of cycling as part of an active lifestyle and to promote the undoubted health benefits that can be gained from leisure cycling.

Speaking at the launch, Mr. Kevin Kidney, Head of Operations, Fáilte Ireland Mullingar said,

“Fáilte Ireland is delighted to support “Destination Sport”. We promote County Westmeath under the umbrella of Lakelands & Inland Waterways and research has shown that events such as this are an integral part of the Irish tourism offering, while at the same time affording an opportunity for local people to enjoy the benefits. Following on from the success of Discover Mullingar in 2009, this exciting event again shows the value of state agencies and the industry working together.”

Sport is an activity which touches the lives of many people, providing opportunities to play sports, to join sports clubs, to attend sporting fixtures or to volunteer for sport-related activity and makes a significant contribution to the well being of our society in general.

The Cathaoirleach, Cllr. Cooney went on to say,

“Destination Sport – Mullingar is intended to celebrate and showcase the large number of sports clubs and sporting opportunities available in and around Mullingar. The celebration of SPORT is also designed to encourage public participation in a fun way. It’s about people getting to see sports – some they may not have seen before and it’s about people getting a sense of and an appreciation for the levels of expertise that can be achieved through individual and team effort.”

Cllr. Ruth Illingworth, Cathaoirleach of Mullingar Town Council also speaking at the launch, warmly welcomed the “Destination Sport –Mullingar” event and said,

“Mullingar has a rich sporting history and the town has produced many distinguished sports men & women. This event offers an opportunity to show off the towns sporting talent and will hopefully encourage more people to become involved in sporting activity”.

Mr. Paul O’Brennan, President of Mullingar Chamber of Commerce said at the launch,

“We’re delighted to be part of “Destination Sport”. The week long celebrations will be of huge benefit to the town and will lift the great community spirit we’ve developed over the years. It’ll be great to see the town come alive to celebrate, and appreciate the level of sporting activity we have here on our doorstep”.

So from the proposed opening parade on the 12th June and a minimum of 60 scheduled events to choose from, with ample opportunities for participation in a fun way and not forgetting the exciting Criterium Cycle Race and the “Great Mullingar Turbo Cycle Challenge” to the people of Mullingar – and with the mouth-watering prospect of another “Taste of Mullingar – Open Air Street Market”, it is anticipated that Mullingar will be buzzing throughout the week-long celebrations.

Putting Mullingar on the map as “Destination Sport” –  Come and join the fun.

Download the Mullingar Destination Sport – What’s on Guide.

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