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Tuesday 2 September 2014

Singing astronaut Chris Hadfield shows his skills on the hurling pitch

Laura Butler

Published 10/01/2014 | 13:57

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It seems that astronaut commander Chris Hadfield can do no wrong when it comes to celebrating Ireland and its pastimes.

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Enjoying his new role of Cultural Ambassador to Ireland, Hadfield turned out to Na Fianna GAA Club in Glasnevin, Dublin today with his wife Helena, to try his hand at hurling.

And although it was his fist time playing the sport, the Canadian proved more than capable on the pitch.

Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport, Leo Varadkar, also joined in on the training session, but joked that he'd be better off sticking with triathlons.

The minister thanked our new ambassador for stepping into the position.

"His enthusiasm and energy make him a great ambassador for Irish tourism and should help persuade many more to come here and see Ireland close up in 2014," Varadkar said.

Tourism Ireland are creating three short films of Hadfield's five-day visit, which will be shared on social networking sites to highlight the country as a a holiday destination.

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10/01/2014 
Picture shows Tourism Ireland ambassador Commander, Chris Hadfield,(right) who is showcasing some of Irelands top visitor attractions and experiences with Tourism Ireland ,having a lesson in hurling at Na Fianna GAA club, in Glasnevin with Tourism Ireland CEO, Niall Gibbons (left) ; and Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport, Leo Varadkar (centre) . Pic:Naoise Culhane
Tourism Ireland has enlisted the help of former International Space Station commander, Chris Hadfield, to highlight Ireland as a top holiday destination for 2014 and beyond by showcasing some of Irelands top visitor attractions and experiences over the next four days.  
Tourism Ireland will create three short films of Hadfields visit  featuring different themes like Gaelic games, our spectacular scenery and major visitor attractions  which will be shared by Tourism Ireland with its Facebook fans and Twitter followers around the world.
Further information: Sinéad Grace, Tourism Ireland (087) 685 9027
Pic:Naoise Culhane-no fee
Commander Chris Hadfield,(right) having a lesson in hurling at Na Fianna GAA club, in Glasnevin with Tourism Ireland CEO, Niall Gibbons (left) ; and Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport, Leo Varadkar (centre) . Photo: Naoise Culhane
Chris Hadfield dons the green jersey before entertaining the crowd with some music.
Chris Hadfield dons the green jersey before entertaining the crowd with some music.

"I have been around the world more than anyone you've ever met, 2500 times or so, and I think that deepens your appreciation for just how beautiful certain parts of the world are, as well as the reaction from the people," Hadfield said.

"There was obviously a link with Ireland with my daughter studying here for several years, but it was like a blossoming friendship from orbit, it's been very interesting.

"I really wanted to come back and see Ireland, so to be cast in an ambassadorial role, I'll be seeing it with new eyes, which will be a real treat for me.

"I can't wait to come back in the future to meet people and travel around the country."

Link-sharing website Reddit have even rebranded the subreddit temporarily to honour Hadfield's visit to Ireland, renaming the section 'Haddit' and adding a picture of the famous 'reddit alien' in a spacesuit. 

reddit Ireland.JPG 

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