WHEN THE HILLGROVE HOTEL IN MONAGHAN BECAME THE CLONGROVE

29 March 2013 No Comments by The Northern Standard

On Friday night last at the Hillgrove Hotel, there was a palpable sense that the gaels belonging to Clontibret O’Neills GAA club were laying foundation blocks to cement an even brighter future.

Gaels pitched at the coalface of affairs at Clontibret for longer than yer average commoner-garden Monaghan GAA fan can rightly remember were joined by a huge throng of fellow parishioners and many more besides for a fundraiser extraordinaire that pock-marked the club’s centenary celebrations like a starter’s gun at Aintree.

If efficiency is the quality which most defines a successful GAA club, then the manner in which Clontibret O’Neills staged their ‘So You Think You Can Dance’ spectacular will have spawned a dozen copycats before the year is out.

The big night had arrived at the county town venue like drifting flakes of snow but such was the bon homie and camaraderie that enveloped the Hillgrove last Friday that those flakes might well have been slivers of confetti at a celebrity wedding from times past.

Someone said a thousand people turned up. Someone tried to do the maths on it and hold their wife’s handbag at the same time. Between the jigs and the reels, the night of dancing might well end up boosting Clontibret’s coffers by a healthy 50 grand.

It was a night for dancing, a night for throwing off the hair shirt and letting your hair down. The club’s aim of purchasing additional ground next to their main field and developing it to a high standard came a long way to …

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