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Nadia launched Spar's Spartan Challenge

- TOP model Nadia Forde stepped out this morning to officially launch Spar's Spartan Challenge in Herbert Park alongside fitness guru Karl Henry and expert nutritionist, Paula Mee.

The trio are encouraging athletes of all abilities to take part in the three 2010 Adidas Race Series events in Phoenix Park, as well as the Adidas Lifestyle Sports Dublin City Marathon.

Spar will select four Spartans, who will receive a tailor- made fitness plan from Karl Henry, a personalised nutrition programme from Paula Mee and other assistance to help them succeed in the challenge. You can apply to take part at www.spartanchallenge.com

- CORONATION Street star Kym Marsh jetted into Dublin this morning for the launch of a new education programme for people with type 2 diabetes.

The former pop star was at the urban garden of the Morrison Hotel, where she officially announced details of their new website entitled www.itsmyinsulin.ie

Kym will return next weekend for the Walkers TV Now Awards at the Mansion House.

- ATTENTION all culture vultures. If you have some extra time on your hands and fancy getting in touch with your inner Marian Keyes, a new creative writing centre in Hatch Street has just been launched.

The Big Smoke Writing Factory will be running various classes over the coming months with its well-known teachers supplying all the tricks of the trade.

Among those who will be imparting their gems of wisdom are the Herald's own Marisa Mackle, alongside Maggie Smith Hurt, Nicole Rourke, Yvonne Cullen and Claire Hennessy, whose first novel was published when she was 14.

- Traditional group Dervish will release their new album and DVD this Friday.

To celebrate, the group will return to their Sligo roots to play a session that will be streamed live online globally.

The band will gather at Hargadons Pub in Sligo for the launch of From Stage To Stage.

Among the guests expected are Duke Special, Ron Sexsmith, Vasen, Martin Hayes and Denis Cahill and bluegrass mandolin virtuoso Mike Marshall.

- Singer Bobby Kimball, from rock band Toto, is set to jet into Mantra Garden Bar in Maynooth tomorrow night to officially launch the new upgraded i-tab, which is now in music stores throughout Ireland, the UK, US and Australia.

He will perform with top Irish session musicians such as Anthony Drennan, Tony Molloy, Conor McGouran, Paul Lyttle and Aidan Pierce

The revolutionary new pocket-sized unit sits on the end of a guitar, allowing guitar players of all levels to scroll chords and lyrics in perfect time. More than 500 guests from the music industry are expected to attend.