Sunday 22 April 2018

No 'Achy-Breaky Hearts' as Irish OAPs smash line-dancing record

Line dancing pensioners record
Line dancing pensioners record
Kirsty Blake Knox

Kirsty Blake Knox

They came, they danced, they conquered.

A group of Irish OAPs smashed the world record for the largest group of senior citizens to line dance outdoors.

Decked out in Stetson hats, ponchos and cowboy boots, the 121-strong crew busted some moves outside Dublin's GPO.

"I'm only getting started," Rose Carney (89), from Royal Canal said.

Mary McDermott linedancing
Mary McDermott linedancing

"I love to dance - it keeps you young."

The great, great grandmother was joined by her younger sister, Ellen Quinn (80), who believes the secret to a long and healthy life is "good company and good dancing".

Rose Kelly (71), from Raheny, was one of the more energetic seniors.

"You ain't seen nothing yet," she said, before bursting into an impromptu version of Nancy Sinatra's 1966 song These Boots are Made for Walking.

"I'll need a cold shower when we're done," she said mopping her brow.

The dance-off was organised by Friends of the Elderly Ireland and coincided with the UN Day of the Older Person.

The previous record stood at 60, which the group set the previous year.

The crowd attracted bemused glances from onlookers who threw bunches of carnations into the air.

Esther Maguire (98), from Walkinstown, was the oldest dancer and needed a "little help" getting into a taxi after all the effort.

Organiser Dermot Kirwan was thrilled with the turn out.

"Last year we had 60 people dancing outside and now we have double that figure," he said.

"It's a fantastic event and a great way for people of all ages to come together. The reaction has been fantastic - everyone was smiling and line dancing."

Mr Kirwan believes that the event will attract an even larger crowd next year.

"It's going to be bigger and better," he said.


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