After the Light Parade

The Quaker Village of Letterfrack in North West Conamara is a thriving centre of excellence with more than 500 people involved in education from Creche, Primary School, Conservation Centre, Youthreach, GMIT Letterfrack to VTOS. Connemara West – local development organisation; FORUM community development organisation; GMIT Letterfrack and GRETB all positively contribute to establishing Letterfrack as a real centre of education. Connemara Community Radio adds greatly to the mix. The After the Light Project is now in its fifth year and has become an integral part of the Conamara Sea Week Festival. It has been a great success bringing hundreds of people out into the night to celebrate the great energy and creativity now abounding in our village. The term ‘After the Light’ suggests that we are going for the high ground; that we aspire to excellence in all that we do. And while we acknowledge the darker sides of our history we are clearly marking the fact that ours is a vibrant, energetic and outward looking place, a place full of possibility. Of course ‘After the Light’ could also suggest that the light is gone and this gives us an opportunity to dive into the underworld as we get ready for Halloween. “Not only was the parade around the buildings impressive and imaginative, the gathering together around the fire sculptures and the Lord of the Lights throne, with music, lights and small enactments was quite spectacular and so many people were present to participate and mark the event is testament to it s potency and strength. And future possibilities. This was, to my mind, community arts at it s very finest and the level of co operation,sharing and collaboration, from so many sections of the education system- preschool through to students from the Furniture College- made this a remarkable and memorable event”. Airt O’Briain Film Maker “I am delighted to be associated with the pioneering work of Conamara Environmental Educational & Cultural Centre. I congratulate them on their inspiring work” President Michael D. Higgins (on the occasion of their 30th anniversary 2014) “After the Light takes place by and for the community. I think this is what made it so impressive. I can’t recall seeing the village so crowded, all ages were there, it was a real family occasion. The involvement of school children, Youthreach, GMIT and VTOS and many, many more was very inclusive in a meaningful way. The night was fantastic – the drumming, the animation, the sculpture pieces and most of all the fires and the lights. Thank you for brightening up the year”. Mary Ruddy Community Activist/Broadcaster

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