Czech mates to arrive in Mallow for Rebel Week

Mallow is gearing up to host 90 members of a youth orchestra from the Czech Republic next week as part of its host town role for Cork Rebel Week, the Rebel County’s flagship event for the Gathering 2013.

Next Wednesday, October 16th, majorettes and band members of the award winning Jistebník Youth Wind Orchestra and accompanying adults will arrive in Mallow ahead of their performance in an International Band Parade in Cork city on Saturday October 19th.

“We wanted our Czech guests to really sample life as it’s lived here in Mal-low, so we issued a call for host families and the res-ponse was very positive,” says Chairman of Mallow Rebel Week Cllr. Ronan Sheehan. “We’ve organised an exhibition hurling match at Mallow GAA Complex, a trip to Cork Racecourse Mallow and even a visit to the Jameson Distillery in Midleton for the older members of the group.”

Mallow has a surprising and long-standing link to the Czech Republic, as Rebel Week committee member and historian Colman Rutherford discovered. “Mallow Sugar Factory was in fact des-igned by Czech engineers 80 years ago this year, and some of the Czech community living in the town descend from those who came to Mallow back in 1934,” Colman notes. The Czech connections will be showcased in an exhibition entitled ‘Mallow and the Czech Republic – Unexpected Links’ which will be officially opened at Mallow Library next Thursday, October 17th. The exhibition also incor-porates a visit to the Czech Republic by local Irish dancers and Thomas Davis Pipe Band in 1967, while a Czech group also returned to Mallow to perform in the famous Folk Gathering in 1988.

During their time in Mallow, the band will play a number of engagements, including local schools, a parade in the town centre and a joint concert with local musicians at St Mary’s Church on Friday, October 18th, attended by County Mayor Noel O’Connor, Mayor of Mallow Johnny Griffin and Minister Sean Sherlock.

“After all the organising and planning, we’re excited to finally meet our Czech guests next week and look forward to them enjoying the activities, events and most of all, a warm welcome during their stay in Mallow,” says Ronan Sheehan.