The dancers pictured in Germany. Picture: John Leahy
The Newbridge Bad Lippspringe twinning trip was another fantastic success, according to committee member, Peter O’Neill.
Read also: See more Kildare stories
“Once again we are looking for superlatives to describe the most recent visit to our Twin Town Bad Lippspringe in Germany. This time numbers were up to 128, which included 81 from Droichead Nua Figure Dancing, a group from Newbridge Photography Club and regular visitors to Ba Li, which is shortened version for the town,” he said.
The visit began with a stop off on Lake Mohnesse for a barbecue with a difference.
“The barbecue was on a doughnut-shaped boat used by the adults and all the children sailed around in paddle boats, coming to the adults for their food as it cooked — a completely new experience for everyone but especially the young dancers and it set the tone for the weekend,” added Peter.
This was followed by a welcome party that evening which was attended by Thomas Bellew, First Secretary from the Irish Embassy office in Berlin.
Saturday morning saw an exhibition of Irish dancing in Martinstift residential home.
The first big performance for the dancers took place in the afternoon on stage in the forest before a very large audience followed by speeches by Mayor Andreas Bee and Thomas Bellew.
The group got a standing ovation and special thanks was given to Caroline Morrissey as leader.
There was then time for a tour of the gardens and flower shows including a viewing of the Irish garden and Bog Oak.
Saturday night was a big highlight for all but especially for the young kids beginning with a marvellous laser light show followed by a spectacular display of fireworks.
Sunday morning saw a tour of the county for the photographers, a guided tour of the town and many of the group took part in a cleanup of the water around the Lippequelle.
“The annual competition took place in the early afternoon and we had Thomas Bellew as official referee and his job turned out quite tricky as the action developed over four events and after much deliberation Newbridge was declared winner. The cup was presented at the Irish/German afternoon at the Burgcasino in the Kongresshaus which included the final performance from the dancers before a packed audience, with live music and entertainment along with barbecue and beverages.
Monday was departure day and one group visited a Safari Park en route to airport and a smaller group got to see the huge Hermann statue in Detmold.
“So the end of another wonderful Twinning visit and the dance group were superb ambassadors for our town and were a credit to Caroline and her assistants and proved once again the true value of the town twinning concept,” said Peter. “We were delighted to have the Irish Embassy involved this time and also to have Kildare County Council represented by Joe Boland, director of Services.
“Attention now turns to next year and in the meantime there is an exhibition of photos with text in the Riverbank from September 16 to 28 with official opening on the 20th by German Ambassador H E Deike Potzel.”