Monday, April 22, 2013

Wrapping Boston & Jane in Our Love

{Photo from the Clifden Academy Facebook page}
One week ago, the world watched in horror as bombs went off at the finish line of the 117th running of the Boston Marathon. Almost immediately upon learning of the loss of 8-year-old Martin Richard, and critical injuries sustained by his mother and 6-year-old sister Jane, Irish dancers worldwide banded together in support of one of our own. One week later, what can we do to help the Richard family and other victims of this senseless crime?

Wrapping Jane in Our Love 

Irish dancer Bree Johnson and her mother Trish {of the Glencastle Irish Dancers} began this facebook group to support Jane. The pair were inspired to donate a quilt to Jane, a beginning Irish dancer at the Clifden Academy, to comfort her and show how much the Irish dancing community loves and supports her. They have gathered over 400 T-shirts from Irish dance schools across the country and world. These shirts will be sewn into quilts and donated to Jane. Even Michael Flately {the Lord of the Dance himself} has offered his support to this project, saying "T-shirts will be on the way early next week from Michael and the Lord of the Dance Troupe currently touring Russia. Jane and her family are in our thoughts and prayers." 

If you would like to donate a T-shirt, visit Wrapping Jane in Our Love on facebook for more information. Monetary donations are also appreciated. As a quilter myself, I can only imagine the amount of threads, fabrics, and supplies Trish and Bree will require for this massive project.

Red Sox for Jane

Another Irish dance family was inspired to support Jane and the victims of the bombings by collecting poodle socks. Irish dancers can mail their new or used {and clean} poodle socks, to be dyed red by dancers and sold as a fundraiser. Profits will be donated to the victims fund. More information can be found on the Red Sox for Jane facebook page.

Donations to the Richard Family

According to the Richard family's pastor, the family is asking for prayers and privacy during this difficult time.  Fr. Sean M. Connor of Saint Ann Parish Neponset in Dorchester, Massachusetts made several suggestions to support the Richard family in a letter on the parish's website. If you are in the Boston area, consider donating blood to Children's Hospital Boston through their "Pints for Half-Pints" program. If you're unable to donate blood, consider donating toys, books, stuffed animals, or other items to Children's Hospital Boston. More information for donation of items can be found {here}.

Many Irish dancers and schools have organized dance-outs to raise funds and support for Jane, the Richard family, and Boston. Are you one of those dancers? What have you done to show your love and support for these victims? Let's hear what else Irish dancers are doing to show their compassion in the aftermath of this tragedy. 

Keep Dancing,

Monday, April 1, 2013

Back to Boston

Congratulations to everyone who danced at Worlds this past week! Hope everyone had an amazing time in Boston... know I did! From the dancing to the sightseeing, it was a week to remember :)

Caitlin, myself, Laura, & Danielle at Faneuil Hall 

Sadly, I couldn't make it to Boston for Worlds this year... but I was in Boston for the North American Irish Dancing Championships back in 2002, my very first NANs! Boston holds so many amazing Irish dance memories for me, from NANS 2002 to several fabulous summers at Boston College's Gaelic Roots summer program.

Still one of my favorite hoodies!

Can you tell these pictures are from nearly 13 years ago? I haven't rocked jorts and a cami in public in quite some time. Or puka shells for that matter. [Boy, do I feel old.] However, my super-tan legs have 2013 World Championships of Irish Dance written all over them!

Our poodle socks were taller and our crowns had less crystals, but it seems like just yesterday we were side-stage for a major in Boston. Times & styles have certainly changed, but I hope everyone in Boston this past week had just as much fun as I did with my friends from the Drake & Butler Schools of Irish dance.

Were you in Boston?! This year? Happy April Fools!

Keep Dancing,

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