Tuesday 18 December 2018

Riders answer the call to Duhallow Hunt Ball

Sheila Fitzgerald

This year's Duhallow Hunt Ball was a truly cosmopolitan affair with guests from Germany, Norway, and many parts of Ireland joining locals for what has become one of the highlights of the social calendar. 

220 attendees gathered at Springfort Hall where the Duhallow members welcomed people from other hunts throughout the country, including Meath, Scarteen, Limerick, Tipperary, and Iveagh.

Joint Masters in attendance included Matt Nagle and his wife, Regina; Pat Hayes and his wife, Dana, and Peter O'Meara and his wife, Hilary.

Other masters enjoying the ball were Alexander Mills, Master of the Iveagh in the North of Ireland, and Guy Cooper of the Bear Creek Hunt in Atlanta, USA, as well as the former master of the Duhallow Hunt, Maurice O'Connor and his wife, Rosemary. 

Also present at the event were hunt chairman Pat Fleming and his wife, Eleanor, huntsman Ger Withers and his wife, Maria, Joint Secretary Pat Coleman and his wife, Bets; Honorary Treasurer Catherine O'Flynn and her husband, Philip, together with many well-known faces from the hunting field in Duhallow. Several farmers who make their lands accessible to the hunt during the season were also at the ball. 

Organisers on the Hunt Ball Committee, including Maria Aherne, Hilary O'Meara, Diana McClernon, Fiona O'Meara, Liz Ryan, Sian Hawkes and Elaine Palmer, Julie Roche and Jane O'Flynn were commended on a great function.

As well as the standard events of the evening, including the auction, there were many fun events, such as Heads & Tails as well as specific fun awards for various members of the hunt. However, the recipient of the Most Spectacular Fall of the Year award decided to have his name excluded from the press.

Music on the night was provided by Catch 22 with a DJ afterwards keeping the party going until the early hours of the morning.