The Common Ground

Vol. VII, Issue 11


November 2009



Common Ground readers and other supporters of the Ireland Institute can now
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It’s hard to believe that we’ve been in operation for twenty years.  And the events that have shaped our community, our country, the island of Ireland, and the world in that time are nothing less than extraordinary.  In 1989 it seemed that the Troubles of Northern Ireland would never end.  Times were tough economically in Ireland and in the US.  Paramilitaries in the north, on both sides held absolute power over many communities there.  And Irish men and women continued to pour onto US shores looking for a better life, as generations of Irish had done before.


But over the next ten years a number of events, some coincidental, some not, brought Ireland to a different place.  Irish government policies on corporate tax, education, and job training began to bear fruit as US and other foreign companies streamed into Ireland, creating well-paying jobs and lifting Ireland to a standard of living that ranked among the highest in the world.


Also within that ten year period, the US government helped broker one of the most imaginative and effective peace agreements in the history of international diplomacy.  The 1998 Good Friday Agreement brought leaders from two vehemently opposed constituencies, unionists and nationalists, together to debate their differences and to acknowledge their common ground. 


Of course the following ten years would present a whole new set of challenges to Ireland and to Irish America.  The Irish economy continued to grow, outpacing other nations and beating its own lofty expectations year after year.  As an EU member, Ireland was able to quickly absorb workers from across Europe.  These new immigrants to Ireland could earn three-to-four times the wages of their homelands.  And many of the Irish that had left a decade earlier were coming home to participate in the powerful ‘Celtic Tiger’ economy.  The Republic of Ireland had reached the pinnacle of economic success.  For the first time in the history of modern Ireland, standards of living, employment, and education were better in the south than in the north.


And then came September 11, 2001.  Without going into the details of that day, and what happened since, I will merely comment that the United States’ response to terrorist activity changed dramatically.


I believe both the pressures of a strong Irish economy and the US response to terrorism have had important impacts on Northern Ireland.  Scores of combatants on both sides of the conflict surely saw the improving lifestyles of their neighbors across the border.  They realized that policy, not pistols, brought the south to the top of the economic table.  They surely felt the pressure from the US Government to step away from armed struggle.  With the Good Friday Agreement in place, the call from political leaders supporting the IRA, UVF, and others to decommission weapons, as difficult as that was for some, proved to be the right way forward.  And the British government’s decision to gradually decrease military presence in Northern Ireland has been a welcome incentive, encouraging decommissioning.


The Northern Ireland peace process continues to challenge leaders and their constituents to reach out, to seek compromise, to share and forge a vision of reconciliation. 


Peace has come to Northern Ireland.  But reconciliation is only now beginning.  Too many schools and communities remain segregated.  Young people, the future of Northern Ireland still have too few opportunities to meet, to talk, to develop meaningful and lasting friendships. 


Meanwhile, as the global economy fell last year, the impact in Ireland was catastrophic.  Unemployment, falling land values, and an over-extended government see Ireland lagging behind, while most of Europe begins to show signs of growth. 


These are the new challenges for the Ireland Institute of Pittsburgh and for Irish America.  Collectively, we have the resources—the time, talent, and treasure—to bring the two traditions of Ireland together and to boost the all-island economy.  And by doing so, we improve our own economy and help prevent the spread of terrorism.  We can do this.  And we will.


Our Wider Horizons Programs, our trade initiatives, our partnerships with local and Irish organizations all address these two primary challenges.  I hope you read about them here and find a way to participate with us in these important undertakings. 


Thanks, and enjoy,

Jim Lamb




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A former RUC officer and Orange Order member has been selected to join Sinn Féin's team in the Assembly.

At a selection convention last night, republicans in Co Derry chose Coleraine councilor Billy Leonard to succeed veteran politician Francie Brolly who had announced his retirement.

Mr Leonard's past links to the security forces, where he once served as a Royal Ulster Constabulary reservist, made him a surprise addition to Sinn Féin ranks when he first emerged on the political scene.

The 54-year-old joined Sinn Féin in 2004 after he left the nationalist SDLP.

Over recent years, however, he has become a high profile Sinn Féin representative in the Coleraine area.

After he was selected to fill the vacant Assembly seat, Mr Leonard said it was an honor to have been chosen.

'The North West region is one of the most deprived areas on this island and it is important that we have strong leadership to ensure East Derry is given its fair share,' he said.

'Sinn Féin is about giving strong leadership and I will be joining a team in Stormont who will stand strong for people's rights and for equality.

'We will be working to bring about prosperity to all the regions of this island by building an Ireland of equals.'

He added: 'I know that the workload of an MLA is daunting but I am prepared and with the help and support of a strong Sinn Féin constituency team I am sure we can deliver.'




Thousands of workers around the country have taken to the streets in a series of marches to protest against proposed Government cuts in pay and services. Rallies were held in Dublin, Cork, Dundalk, Galway, Limerick, Sligo, Tullamore and Waterford.


The main march in Dublin left Parnell Square and proceeded down O'Connell Street, around College Green and on to Merrion Square for a large rally.


Gardaí say at least 30,000 people marched through the capital. However, speakers at the rally said that 70,000 people took part in the protest.  The crowd in cork City alone was estimated at between 12,000 and 15,000.


Organizers of the march say public sector workers were joined on the march by many employees from the private sector in a show of solidarity. The organizers said 20,000 people attended the demonstration.


In Waterford, local trade union branches were joined by delegations from Kilkenny, south Tipperary and Wexford.


A spokesperson for the Galway Council of Trade Unions addressed a 5,000-strong crowd and said they fully supported ICTU's (Irish Congress of Trade Unions) ten-point plan to protect jobs and incomes.


The IICTU, which organized the day of action, is opposed to the Government's economic strategy, which it says will inflict unfair hardship on working people and the vulnerable in society. 'We hope that the Government realizes that there is a strong opinion against the Budget proposals,' said ICTU General Secretary David Begg. 'We hope that they will look at our plan, which is for a more gentle transition in the period of adjustment. By deflating the economy so quickly and strongly they will push it towards a prolonged slump. They (the Government) don't realize that.'


SIPTU (Union)  President Jack O'Connor told the crowd in Dublin that the 5% of population who own 40% of the country's wealth would have to be forced to pay their share towards correcting the country's finances.


Employers' groups have criticized the protests. IBEC (Irish Business and Employers Confederation) said the protest would send out the wrong signal to potential investors abroad, and would be damaging to jobs.


Taoiseach Brian Cowen has insisted the Government must find savings worth roughly €4bn in the Budget on 9 December.



The West and South have been experiencing widespread flooding following the torrential rain.


Soldiers and Army trucks have been fighting flood waters in Bantry and Clonakilty in Co Cork, Ennis in Co Clare, Clonmel, Co Tipperary, and Ballinasloe, Co Galway.


The Defense Forces have 175 troops on the ground and twice that number on standby as well as trucks, boats and helicopters.


Houses in several villages have been evacuated and a number of main roads and many secondary roads are now closed.


Train services have been affected too, with an Iarnród Éireann spokesperson confirming that the railway line between Athenry and Ballinasloe has now been closed.


There are also growing fears of flooding in Mallow and Fermoy.

The Taoiseach has said that local emergency plans in place are working well to deal with the effects of flooding. Speaking after a meeting of the Emergency Co-Ordination Committee to discuss the flooding, Brian Cowen said the Government was very concerned about making sure displaced people were prioritized. He also said it was important that people have access to clean drinking water and the Government was also concerned about protecting installations like hospitals.

The Minister for the Environment, John Gormley, insisted that Government investment in flood protection measures would continue, despite the economic downturn.

The President of the Irish Farmers' Association has called for all available assistance to be given to those whose homes and properties have been devastated by the flooding.

Insurance companies say they expect the cost of the flooding nationwide to exceed €100 million.

Questions have also been raised about the level of warnings given by the ESB about the potential for flooding. But the ESB has rejected any suggestion that its actions may have worsened the flooding. A spokesperson said the company gave early warnings to the state authorities and the media about the risk of flooding, as soon as it became apparent.

Throughout Ireland, council workers have been out since early morning opening drains and gullies in an effort to keep down water levels. Hundreds of local volunteers have also brought in earth moving equipment to try to relieve flooding around farm buildings

Although flood waters receded around the Cork city about 18,000 houses on the northside have been without water because of damage to a pumping station.

Tankers with emergency supplies were available at a number of locations in the city overnight.

Fears of water pollution have resulted in boil notices being issued in parts of Cork and in Galway.





The bad news first:


Restaurant Chiefs Say 20,000 Jobs Could Be Lost: The Restaurants Association of Ireland has warned that over 20,000 jobs are at risk in the sector. The Association says 80% of its members are losing money and one in three restaurants could close in the next six months with a potential loss of €700m to the economy. The RAI is calling on the Government to take a series of measures to ensure the viability of the sector. 


150 Jobs to go as Ryanair Cuts Shannon Flights: Ryanair is to cut the number of its flights out of Shannon Airport by 75% from next April, with the loss of 150 jobs. The airline plans to cut the number of aircraft based at Shannon from four to one. The airline's current contract with the airport runs out in April 2010. Shannon Airport has confirmed that it is not entering a new five year agreement with Ryanair, blaming the airline's 'unreasonable demands'


100,000 Jobs at Risk in the Construction Industry:

The Director-General of the Irish Construction Industry Federation has said that less than 20,000 houses will be built this year and less than 10,000 next year. Speaking to the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Enterprise, trade and Employment, Tom Parlon warned the workload for the next few years would be 'dismal'. He also said there is 'good value to be had now,' as costs are down by 30%. Last week, the Society of Chartered Surveyors (SCS) warned that a further 100,000 jobs were at risk in the construction sector unless the Government introduced anti-recession stimulus measures without delay. 


80 Jobs to go at Electronics Plant in Tralee: A company that develops electronic components for car manufacturers is to lay off 80 of its workers in Tralee, Co Kerry. The lay-offs were announced to workers at BERU Electronics at a meeting between the workers and German executives of the company. In a statement, BERU said the Tralee plant is currently loss-making and the redundancies were necessary to avoid a possible closure of the plant.


Now for the good news:


560 Companies In-Line for Subsidy Scheme: Enterprise Ireland says that around 9,000 jobs are in line to be protected by the €250m Employment Subsidy Scheme. Up to 560 companies are expected to be approved to benefit from the scheme next week. Efforts are being made to streamline the application process but Enterprise Ireland says there are no plans to relax the qualifying criteria. Payments of €200 per employee per week are available to manufacturers or internationally-traded service providers that employ more than ten people.


90 New Jobs Announced for Galway: Up to 90 new jobs are to be created in Galway by two US multi nationals, it has been announced. 50 jobs will be at the Hewlett Packard computer software and IT plant at Ballybrit, where the additional staff will work in research and development. The company already employs a workforce of about 500 in Galway. 40 new jobs are to be created by the online retail company which is opening a new facility in Galway. has its headquarters in California, US.


163 Jobs to be Saved at Element Six: Workers at Element Six in Shannon have agreed to accept a Labour Court recommendation to save 163 jobs at the plant. It was feared that 370 people would be laid off. Following a two-day ballot, union members  voted by a clear majority to accept the recommendation. Element Six announced plans to cease production with a loss of 370 of the 450 jobs at the plant last July. A sustainability plan was put together to save an extra 163 jobs.  Element Six is one of the leading suppliers of supermaterials – materials whose exceptional properties are unique or outperform others in their class. The group’s products are used across a wide range of industries from mining and construction to consumer electronics, within medicine and for oil and gas production. 


75 New Jobs at Derry Retail Park: 75 jobs are to be created in Derry after three big stores signed-up as new tenants in one of the city's main shopping outlets. Next Home, Mothercare and Dreams are moving into the Crescent Link Retail Park. The companies, which will open over the course of the next three months, are offering both full-time and part-time roles.


Facebook to Double Irish Workforce: Social networking website Facebook is to create 70 new jobs in Ireland by next year as it doubles its workforce to 140. The company established its European headquarters in Dublin this time last year. The new jobs will be in advertising sales, engineering and online operations. Speaking at the announcement, IDA Chief Executive Barry O'Leary said it was possible that Facebook could have a multiple of its projected staff numbers in future years.


100 Jobs Set for Derry Call Center: An Indian-owned call center company is creating 100 jobs in Northern Ireland. Firstsource already employs around 1,000 people at its base in Derry. It also employs up to 400 in Belfast. General Manager Sean Harnett said that Derry had a lot to offer the company and they were very happy with its staff in the city. 'There is a great work ethic here and good employees, and we find people will work very well with us and are committed to what we are trying to achieve. We have some fantastic people working for us and we have been very happy with what we have found here,' he said. It is the latest round in a constant expansion by the company, which a year ago employed 600 in Derry.


33 New Jobs for Cork Internet Company: An Irish internet services company in Co Cork is to create 33 new jobs and invest €700,000 in research and development with the support of Enterprise Ireland. Newsweaver, which is based in Bandon, currently employs 32 people in the town and provides software to allow companies publish and send newsletters to their customers, with the UN, Shell, AIB, Bupa & Philips among its clients. The company was recently ranked 23rd in the 2009 Deloitte Technology Fast 50, a ranking of the 50 fastest growing technology companies in Ireland. Founded in 1996, Newsweaver is Europe's leading email newsletter specialist.


U.S. Irish Group Launches 100 Million Dollar Fund: A group of executives (from global-technology companies in Silicon Valley) with Irish links in the US has launched a venture fund of $100m to encourage the growth of emerging Irish companies. It is also setting up an Irish Technology Center next year in Silicon Valley. The Irish Technology Leadership Group has worked with universities in the Republic of Ireland and is now participating with two universities in Northern Ireland to help emerging companies in the IT sector. This will they say provide a beachhead for those start-ups and enable them to develop and showcase their potential at the heart of the high tech sector. This morning 12 high-potential technology companies from both sides of the border have been attending workshops in Belfast, where they met the chief executives from the US companies involved in the group.


NYSE to Create Belfast Outpost: The New York Stock Exchange is to create 400 jobs over the next five years as part of a major investment in Northern Ireland. Last year, NYSE revealed that 75 jobs were to be created - 325 further jobs were announced this morning. The jobs will be created with the establishment of a Wall Street exchange outpost in Belfast. The news comes after US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton met unionist and republican leaders at Stormont and hailed the power-sharing government as a positive example to other regions struggling to overcome conflict. NYSE Chief Executive Duncan Niederauer said the skills base of Northern Ireland's workforce, plus the personal relationship struck up with Stormont leaders, proved crucial in clinching the deal. The move was hailed as an endorsement of Northern Ireland's economy and a symbolic vote of confidence in the peace process.


Dublin Firm Sysnet to Create 60 Jobs: Dublin information security consultancy and services company Sysnet is to invest €1.27m in a major expansion program which will create 60 new jobs over the next four years. The expansion is being supported by Enterprise Ireland and will see the company target markets in the Ukraine, Russia, the Middle East and Africa. Sysnet already has clients in over 30 countries worldwide. The company was established in 1989 and has developed an online payment product called Securus, which is used by banks and other organizations handling payment card data.

IBIS to Open New Hotels in Belfast: Two new IBIS hotels have been launched in Belfast. Northern Ireland Tourism Minister, Arlene Foster, welcomed the chain to the city as it unveiled its first hotel in King Street. A second hotel will open in the Queen's Quarter in the city in the coming weeks. 50 jobs have been created following the £12 million investment by the IBIS chain. Arlene Foster said the decision by IBIS to open a total of five new hotels in a £50 million program over the next few years, was a 'significant sign of confidence in Northern Ireland's tourism potential'. Details of the locations of the remaining three hotels have yet to emerge, as have the final number of jobs created by the budget hotel chain.


Cork City has been named among the top 10 in the best cities to visit in the Lonely Planet guide's 'Best in Travel 2010'.

The guide praises the city saying 'Cork is at the top of its game right now: sophisticated, vibrant and diverse, while still retaining its friendliness, relaxed charm and quick-fire wit.'

The book's editor said : 'Cork has been in Dublin's shadows for far too long, it has emerged as a fantastic destination in its own right with great restaurants, galleries, bars and shops as well as stunning scenery on its doorstep.'

The other cities in the top ten are: Cuenca (Ecuador), Sarajevo (Bosnia & Herzegovina), Abu Dhabi (United Arab Emirates), Kyoto (Japan), Lecce (Italy), Singapore, Vancouver (Canada), Istanbul ( Turkey), and Charleston (USA).

The top ten cities are not ranked.







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Children in Ireland are happier and healthier than their neighbors in the UK, according to a new report conducted in collaboration with the World Health Organization.

The in-depth survey co-authored by NUI Galway involved almost 20,000 children aged between 11 and 15 in Ireland, England, Scotland and Wales.

The report titled Young People's Health in Great Britain and Ireland looked at issues such as eating patterns, physical activity, substance use and relationships with family and friends.

Overall, Irish children reported a higher rate of life satisfaction. They were less likely to report feeling low or having a poor body image.

Irish children were also more likely to engage in physical activity and less likely to spend excessive time on computers or games consoles.

After England, young people in Ireland had the lowest level of daily smoking at 6.5%. They also reported a lower level of consumption of alcoholic beverages.

They were also most likely to live with both parents and in bigger households than their counterparts in England, Scotland and Wales.





A new report carried out by the Equality Authority and the ESRI has found that men are twice as likely as women to hold senior and middle management positions.

The study examined the Irish labor market between 1998 and 2007 and found that almost 300,000 women joined the labor market in that period.

Some of the reasons for this include rising levels of educational qualifications, increases in wages and an increase in the number of women in the 25 to 34 year age group who are more likely to work outside the home.

The number of working women with pre-school children increased by 6%, but the number of working lone mothers with children under five fell.

There were large increases in the number of women in business and commerce, managerial and executive occupations and in the number of female gardaí.

But the report points out that there has been increased feminization of some occupations, including childcare and teaching.

One of the authors of the report, Dr Helen Russell, said that comparisons suggest the Irish labor market has one of the highest levels of segregation by gender in Europe.


While the recession has forced the government to consider cut backs on the subsidies it offers for prescription medicine; the recession has caused many to cut back on visits to the doctor and reduce the purchase of over-the-counter and prescription medicines, a new survey suggests.

14% of all adults and one-in-five unemployed have cut down on prescription medicines, according to the 2009 Health Index commissioned by the pharmaceutical firm Pfizer.

Nearly 25% of people are more reluctant to visit a health care professional due to the cost.

Personal and family health is the key issue for 27% of adults and most people consider themselves to be in good health, the survey shows.

The most common medical conditions are blood pressure, asthma and high cholesterol.

The study says that for the recently unemployed, there is a significant impact on self-esteem, which is also causing domestic tension and ill health. They are more likely to report depression than the general population.

People are also showing a greater interest in eating more healthily as a result of the recession




More than 1,500 pubs, clubs, hotels and restaurants have shut their doors in the past five years according to a new report by the Drinks Industry Group of Ireland.


The report published points to falling employment and revenues in the industry, alongside rising costs.


This is the biggest survey of licensed premises in this country, according to the Irish Independent, and was carried out by Dublin City University Business School.


The Drinks Industry Group of Ireland says the evident decline in the industry began before 2004, when the last industry-wide survey was conducted.


Since that time, four fifths of licensed premises surveyed say they have undertaken measures to improve business.


However, today's report reveals that the decline has accelerated in the past 18 months.


In seeking to identify the causes of the closures, the report points to a combination of factors including tougher drink-driving laws, and the smoking ban.


Pubs and other licensed premises outside Dublin face the most uncertain future, with one in three rural pubs predicting that they will struggle to survive.


Over half of those surveyed said that they had started advertising for custom, with many also now providing entertainment.


Calls for excise duty & VAT reduction


Separately, Food and Drink Industry Ireland has called on the Government to reduce excise duty by 20% and the VAT level to 18% in advance of Christmas.


The group, which represents food and beverage companies, believes these reductions will help reduce prices to consumers and stop the expected exodus of Irish shoppers to Northern over the Christmas period.


FDII Head of Consumer Foods Shane Dempsey said the recent TNS World Panel research showed that 250,000 Irish people travel to Northern Ireland to shop.


It is estimated that this has cost the Exchequer in the region of €430m.


Mr Dempsey said retailers and suppliers alike are depending on the Christmas period to alleviate the pressure of the economic downturn and stave off further job losses in 2010.




The Irish Medical Organization (IMO) has expressed concern at the proposal by Minister for Health, Mary Harney, to charge medical card holders .50c (about $.35c) for every prescription item.

The IMO described the proposed move as a 'blunt instrument' to tackle the country's escalating drugs bill, which it suggested could be cut by €300m.

Speaking on Ireland's national broadcaster (RTE), IMO GP committee chairman Dr Ronan Boland said there were other ways of saving money, such as ensuring only a minimum price was paid for each drug.

Mary Harney said she was currently considering proposals for the charge to medical card holders.

Taoiseach Brian Cowen has defended her proposals to implement a charge on prescriptions.

Mr. Cowen said the proposed fees would raise around €30m in an area which has a budget of almost €2bn.

The Taoiseach said that the Government had to deal with rising drug costs and bills and the rising number of prescriptions.

He said the number of prescriptions issued had increased by €22m since 2003, adding that a sustainable way forward needed to be found.






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It was heartbreak for Ireland in their second leg tie against the French national soccer team in Paris last week.  The Irish looked to be heading towards a penalty shoot-out when French striker Thierry Henry twice handled the ball in the box before crossing the ball to teammate William Gallas who headed home making the final score 2-1 to France (on aggregate).


The Swedish officiating crew, did not see the offense and despite the protestations of the Irish players the goal was given.  The goal came in an additional 30 minutes of extra time being played because the tie was 1-1 on aggregate after full time.  Although the French had won the first leg 1-0 in Dublin the previous Saturday, Irish striker, Robbie Keane had scored in Paris to make it 1-1.


Irish Taoiseach, Brian Cowen, joined the Football Association of Ireland (Ireland’s Soccer governing body) in calling for a replay following the controversial game.


Arriving at a summit meeting of EU leaders in Brussels, Brian Cowen said he agreed with calls for a replay since, 'fair play is a fundamental part of the game.'


He said he would be discussing the matter with the French President Nicholas Sarkozy on the margins of the summit although he did not want 'to raise it to high diplomatic status.'


However, as a football row becomes political, French Prime Minister Francois Fillon responded by saying that the Irish government 'should not interfere' in footballing decisions.


In a news conference in Dublin, Irish manager Giovanni Trapattoni called for FIFA (World governing body) and UEFA (European governing body) to look at the use of video technology saying 'It is better to stop the game for 30 seconds rather than make big mistakes.'  However he added that he believed it would be impossible for the match to be replayed.


FIFA had earlier ruled out any chance of a replay.  A flatly dismissed calls for a rematch, referring to Law 5 in the official rules of the game.  It states that the referee has 'full authority to enforce the Laws of the Game in connection with the match to which he has been appointed,' and that 'the decisions of the referee regarding facts connected with play are final.'


Ireland assistant boss Liam Brady had earlier demanded that the game be replayed, saying 'if we are going to have integrity and dignity in the world game then the match should be replayed.'  Speaking on RTÉ Radio, Mr Brady was also critical of FIFA for seeding the play-off draw to favor the bigger teams.


After the incident, Henry admitted that he handled the ball in the build-up to the goal, but said it did not change anything regarding the fact that he was happy that France had qualified.


Latest  News: FIFA are to hold an emergency meeting about this and other this space...


Our third group of the year, from Monaghan and Portadown, left on October 30th.  If you are interested in becoming a Host Family for the Wider Horizons Program in 2010, please contact Robert Tierney at or phone                  (412) 394-3900.





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Our Mission:




Help the Institute:


IIP EVENT Wednesday 9th December

Join the Ireland Institute of Pittsburgh for An Irish Christmas, featuring music by Guaranteed Irish and Hooley at the Harp and Fiddle from 6-9. $10 donation at the door to benefit the IIP.

See you there!



Sunday, November 22

Gaelic Arts Society of Pittsburgh will have a “Memorial Mass” & “Book Review”.  Mass at 12:00 Noon at St. Paul’s Cathedral.  Call James Butler with names of deceased at 412.856.6806.  Book “Belfast Diary – War as a Way of Life” by John Conroy; 1:30pm at Panera Bread on the Blvd. of the Allies in Oakland.  Information Earl McCabe, 412.761.1844

December 3 – 20

Pittsburgh Irish & Classical Theatre, ‘Jane Eyre’ at the Charity Randall Theatre, 412.561.6000.  Tickets: ProArtsTickets at 412.394.3353, online

Thursday, December 3

 “Names – Their Origin and Meaning” focusing on names from America, England, Germany, Italy & Ireland and with a peek at Scotland and Wales,  presented by John F. Webber at Community College of Allegheny County, Downtown Campus., 625 Stanwix Street, 11th Floor, 5:30pm to 7:30pm.  Dates: Oct. 29, Nov. 5, 12, 19, Dec. 3, & 10.  Tuition $75.   Information and registration 412.369.3701 / 3703.  Other information 412.758.5446.

Saturday, December 5

Hibernian Hunger Project "Produce to People" Braddock location 9th Street & Talbot Avenue Braddock Pa. at 8:30am.  Information: Terry Callahan by Email: or Kevin O’Donnell Email: or 412-613-3500.

Pittsburgh Ceili Club ‘Christmas Ceili’ at VFW on Morningside Ave. in Morningside; Ceili at 7:00 PM.  Information: 412-363-8686.




March 5, 2010

Cherish The Ladies in Concert at The Byham Theatre, Sixth Street, Downtown Pgh.  Details TBA.



become a regular at these local programs!

 The Echoes of Erin is marking its 21st year!  It airs every Sunday afternoon at 12:30-2:00p.m. on WEDO, 810 AM.  Diane Byrnes continues to provide Irish music, news, and other great information from the Emerald Isle.  Keep up the good work, Diane!


Paddy's Pour House located on Main Street in Carnegie, PA hosts live entertainment every Friday and Saturday night starting at 9:00 p.m.  Tuesday nights, come for Irish Night: Guinness, Smithwick's, and Half and Half specials 8-12 p.m.  For more information, visit their website or call (412) 279-0770.


Catch the Thistle and Shamrock every Sunday evening at 7:00 p.m. on WYEP 91.3FM for Celtic music performances and discussions.


We're always looking for events to include: If you'd like to include your next event in this newsletter, please send event information including date, time, location, admission cost, and contact information to



Pittsburgh Irish Dance Schools

            Bell School of Irish Dance

            Burke Irish Dancers

    Pittsburgh Irish Reelers

    Shovlin Academy of Dance

    Pittsburgh Ceili Club


Pittsburgh Irish Sports

Pittsburgh Irish Rowing Club (PIRC)

    Pittsburgh Banshees

    Pittsburgh Celtics      




Check Performance Schedules, Etc.

Aran from Johnstown PA -    

George Balderose  -

Carnival of Souls -

Ceann  -

Cue Ball Music

Cahal Dunne  -

Tony Egan   -

Michael Gallagher  -

Terry Griffith 

Guaranteed Irish    -

Hiraeth  -

Hooley  -

John McCann  -

Corned Beef & Curry - http://

Michael Murphy & TSRB

Na Gaels  -

Jack Puskar  -

Red Hand Paddy  -

Rolling Scones  -



The Ireland Institute of Pittsburgh’s mission is to promote mutual understanding of the Catholic and Protestant traditions in Northern Ireland and economic development throughout all of Ireland. The Institute fulfills its mission by providing quality programs in job training, economic development, leadership development, educational alliances and reconciliation. The Institute is a change-oriented organization that collaborates with industry, educational and government institutions in the development of all programs.

The Ireland Institute relies on its donor and volunteer network to continue its mission of mutual reconciliation and economic development. Your generosity is kindly appreciated.

The Ireland Institute is available to accept donations through the United Way. Please remember our code for the United Way Campaign of Southwestern Pennsylvania: 4534. We are also listed as a non-Profit under the Combined Federal Campaign. Our number is: 12438. A third option is to donate through the local Federal campaign. This number is: 9016.

If you prefer, a tax-deductible donation can also be made directly to the Ireland Institute of Pittsburgh. The Ireland Institute also appreciates in-kind donations such as event tickets etc. that we can then distribute to our participants.

For further information or questions about how you can donate, please contact us at 412-394-3900.




 All articles are adapted from www., the Belfast Telegraph, the Irish Examiner, BBC, and other news sources.