Blog celebrates first anniversary with 100th post; Gathering year at halfway mark

This is the 100th post of my Irish-American Blog, which also reaches its first anniversary this month. Thanks for the support.

For the occasion, here’s a link to Niall O’Dowd’s recent post on Irish Central, which celebrates the success of the Gathering 2013, a year-long tourism initiative encouraging people of Irish ancestry to return to the motherland. O’Dowd writes:

The weather has been cooperating with the warmest summer in some time which has really helped….There is always a match or a festival or some event to go to, and the people themselves seem energized by the foreigners who flock to their shore….It is as if Ireland has cast aside its penitent robes after the shock of the bad times and found a new suit that fits the upbeat mood perfectly….Sure there will be problems ahead, and winter’s dark days will draw in again, but the summer of 2013 will rightly be remembered as when The Gathering called countless Irish home.

Second quarter tourism numbers should be forthcoming from Fáilte Ireland later this month. Travel to Ireland was up 7.4 percent during the first quarter of 2013 compared to the previous year.