It just seems like yesterday but it was 30 years ago on this date (Saturday 3rd June 1989) that our new Clubhouse and Bar was officially opened by the late Frank King, former Club Chairman (1971-1975) and former Chairman of the Kerry Co. Board (1979-1987). Just over two years before that it was Mickey Hickey (later a Club Chairman 1991-1992) who officially proposed at a Club Meeting – held on 7th January 1987 – ‘that the Committee be given the go-ahead to investigate the fundraising possibilities for a Clubhouse’.
The proposal was approved at that meeting and under the stewardship of the then Chairman, Brendan Dowling (current Club President) planning for the project began immediately. Civil Engineer, Ger O’Keeffe, who was still playing senior club football at that time, spearheaded the drawing up of plans for the project and just three months to the day after Mickey Hickey’s original proposal planning permission for the project was approved on 7th April by the then Tralee Urban District Council. Pat Murphy was Chairman of the Finance Committee at the time and he and John O’Donnell, who chaired a special Fundraising Committee and a host of volunteers began collecting the necessary finance. Initially progress was slow and it was mid way into the following year before sufficient funds were gathered in order to start the building work.
The work was finally completed in late May 1989 for that official opening at the beginning of June. The official blessing was performed by the then Club President, Fr. Micheál Galvin and the occasion was marked with two challenge games in both Hurling and Football. The Hurling was between a Kerry Selection and the Limerick All Ireland winning hurling team of 1973 which included such stalwarts as Eamon Grimes and Joe McKenna. The Kerry team comprised men like Tommy Bracker O’Regan, John Barry, Brendan Reidy, Brian Neenan and Jim Gannon. Limerick won that game by 5-13 to 2-14.
The Football Challenge was between the Kerry and Dublin teams of the seventies. Dublin lined out with men like Brian Mullins, Jimmy Keaveney, Alan Larkin and the late Anton O’Toole, who just died a few weeks ago. Kerry had Paddy Whacker Moriarty in goals and John O’Keeffe, John L. McElligott, Ger Power, Mikey Sheehy and Tony O’Keeffe, as well as non Rock men like Jack O’Shea, Pat McCarthy, Seán Walsh and Jimmy Deenihan. And Kerry came out victorious with two goals to spare (4-15 to 2-15).
Today our Clubhouse is the centre point of all club activities, Club meetings, card nights, weekly lotto draw, team meetings as well as hosting community events. As always the Clubhouse is available for all types of Parties and Functions. Enquiries about Club Bookings should be made by contacting Harry Hynes at 087 2467286.