The London Olympics are facing a serious challenge this year, as preparations begin for the Rathcoole Olympics. Former Olympic Athlete Eamonn Coughlan, and Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, Frances Fitzgerald, this week launched the concept which aims to transform the village of Rathcoole into an Olympic haven for the weekend of 22th and 23rd of June.
“I was delighted to launch this fantastic initiative and who better to join me in the Park to kick things off than former Olympic athlete Senator Eamonn Coghaln,” said Minister Frances Fitzgerald.
The two high profile Fine Gaelers were joined by Cllr. Emer Higgins, children from Donore Harries and a team from the Rathcoole Boys Football Club, local families.
“When Frances asked me to come along today and hear about the plans for Rathcoole’s Olympics I was delighted to take her up on the offer. It’s great to see such enthusiasm about getting people out, about and active; and your local park here is certainly the perfect place to do just that. I’m a long-time campaigner for fitness and fitness facilities and it’s been great to hear about plans to create a running track here in Rathcoole. As a life long member of Donore Harriers, I’m particularly pleased to see them represented here today. The concept of the Rathcoole Olympics is a very clever one and I wish you every success with the event.,” said former athletic champion Eamonn Coghlan, who himself is a three time Olympian.
“Michael Ryan has been organising this now annual walk in the Park for the past four years. In fact, there’s a plaque on the wall in the Rose Garden commemorating the event which wrote our names into the Guinness Book of World Records. Each year has been bigger and better than the last and this year’s event has a fitting twist,” explained Frances Fitzgerald.
“To mark the 2012 Olympics, children from Rathcoole, Newcastle, Saggart and Brittas will be carrying their very own Olympic Torch to the Park. The weekend of festivities kicks off on Friday 24th at 6.30 when mixed teams of four will be invited to take part in a series of relay athletics. On Saturday, as the Rathcooole Olympic Torch makes its way to the park, a family fun day will offer everything from paddling pools to Zorbs, archery to bouncy castles, farmers markets and stalls and the now famous 1 mile Rathcoole Park Track. The event is a Guinness World Record attempt and is being run to benefit The Irish Cancer Society and will also raise funds to create a running track in Rathcoole,” continued Fitzgerald.
“This is an event I always support and I am looking to this years festivities which mightn’t quite outshine the London ones but does promise to be one of the most memorable events ever in Rathcoole,” concluded Fitzgerald.