After arriving at Emmet Square for 7.30am in order to secure a good parking spot, the rain looked to be setting in for the day and so the decision was made to re-locate our event to The Venue in O’Donovans Hotel. We set up in the covered beer garden, decorating the area with all things orange…balloons, banners and bunting.
Despite the weather around 200 people gathered for the event which proved to be a most beautiful and moving experience….with many hugs and tears towards the end. In fact when I said, “Oh we’re nearly at the end-what a shame”, someone called out, “Let’s start at the beginning again”!
Among those gathered were participants from workshops which had been delivered previous to the event to a number of local community groups to include: Co-Action, The COPE Foundation, Pine Lodge Asylum Seekers, both Clonakilty secondary schools, The Friday Club in Skibbereen and The National Learning Network – who also provided the addition of drumming along to some of the songs.
Additionally there were people from choirs and singing groups all around the area to include: Acapellabella from Ballydehob, Dunmanway Community Choir, Kinsale Voices, Ceol Na Laoi – Ballincollig Community Choir and the Sunshine Singers from Union Hall.
Prior to the BIG SING! was a performance from the West Cork Inclusive Dance Project along to music provided by The Happiness Ensemble. A beautiful concoction of movement, music and colourful shades of blue in which many individuals’ with special needs participated – including an individual in a wheelchair, who was obviously delighted with being a part of it.
We thank all those who helped to make the day so special..to include the Clonakilty Wellness Committee, Liam the Sound technician , the O’Donovan family for letting us use their wonderful venue which held us all so well, Lee for all the ‘hands on’ site assistance, all the drummers, singers and dancers…and all of you who helped in any way, be it tying up balloons or moving benches.
We are now preparing and exploring proposals for the next BIG SING! event which will be held in Bantry at the FeelGood Festival on Saturday 15th October. Please do get in touch if you would like to join in!!