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Webster Community Blood Drive returns — with a twist

28 May

The Webster Community Blood Drive is back — next Wednesday June 3 and Thursday June 4 at the Webster Recreation Center — but it’s going to look a little different this year.

You know this drive as the one advertised by those big white signs that are placed throughout town at crossroads and in front of some of the drive’s business sponsors. It’s the one where every donor is handed a bunch of raffle tickets, which can be used to try to win any of dozens of prizes.

In large part because of those raffle prizes, the two-day drive is always one of the most popular and well-attended drives of the entire year. But of course, business owners are clearly in no position to donate raffle prizes right now. So this year the drive’s organizers have decided to turn the tables.

To show appreciation for all the business owners who have so faithfully supported this annual drive, donors are encouraged to support them instead — and at the same time show some love to our first responders.

This year, donors are being asked to consider purchasing a gift certificate from a Webster business and bring it along to the drive, or make a cash donation, all of which will be collected and distributed to our local first responders as a thank you for all they’re doing.

Donation boxes will be set up outside the Recreation Center during the entire two-day drive, so even those who are unable to donate blood for any reason can still drive by and drop off their donations. Organizers will also have posters at the drop-off site, where people can write their personal messages of appreciation.

Checks may be made out to North East Quadrant Advanced Life Support, the Webster Volunteer Fire Dept., Inc., or the West Webster Volunteer Firemen’s Association.

This year’s Webster Community Blood Drive is scheduled for Wednesday June 3 and Thursday June 4, from noon to 7 p.m. at the Webster Recreation Center, 1350 Chiyoda Drive. To avoid long wait times, it’s highly recommended that donors schedule an appointment. To do so, visit and search for the sponsor code “WebsterCommunity,” or call 1-800-RED-CROSS.

For more information, you can also call Monroe County Legislator Matthew Terp at (585) 753-1922.

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Birthday parade honors former St. Rita principal

13 May


Birthday parades seem to be popping up every week these days, but this one was an extra special one.

On Monday evening, a parade of cars of cars honoring Sister Katherine Ann Rappl streamed through the St. Rita parking lot, offering gratitude and 80th birthday wishes to the school’s former principal.

It was a complete surprise for Sister Rappl, who clearly enjoyed the parade, which numbered about 140 cars. Thank you so much to Julie Schillaci for passing along the included here.

Julie also sent this write-up about the school’s beloved former principal:

No matter how many years pass, alumni of St. Rita School in Webster will always be “God drops” to Sister of Mercy Katherine Ann Rappl.

Exceptional students at the school are recognized with this honorary designation and receive raindrop-shaped sun catchers to hang in their windows to remind them 84CD1B72-D0E9-48EF-96F8-E6E6EF5CF9F9of how they capture God’s love.

The phrase “God drops” was one that Sister Rappl picked up during a National Catholic Educational Association Conference workshop years ago

“A raindrop is fully made up of what a cloud is made up of,” she always said, noting that people are God drops because they are made up of the same substance as God. God’s life is inextricably intertwined with their lives, she said.

And for the past 30 years, the lives of the students at St. Rita School have been intertwined with Sister Rappl, who began working there as principal in 1983.

She taught at St. Andrew and St. John the Evangelist, Rochester; St. Salome, Irondequoit; St. Louis, Pittsford; and St. Patrick Junior High School and Notre Dame High School, Elmira.

Formerly known as Sister Mary Benedicta, her home parish was St. Thomas the Apostle in Irondequoit, and she attended the parish school. She said the Sisters of Mercy who taught her at Our Lady of Mercy High School in Brighton were very influential in her discerning her vocation, and she became a Sister of Mercy in 1958.

Sister Rappl loves being in Catholic education because she has been able to teach children both academics and their faith, and she has gotten the chance to see students grow.

“That’s a big joy in seeing how they learn to take responsibility and control of their behavior from kindergarten to sixth grade,”

And, she always points out, J.O.Y. — an acronym that stands for Jesus, others and yourself — is the school’s theme.

“I always tell students don’t let anyone take your joy away from you,” Sister Rappl received the “Lighting the Fire Award” from the Catholic School Administrators Association of New York State for her 50 years of service in Catholic education.

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You may have heard some commotion last night in the village around 7 p.m. That was yet another birthday parade, this one for Fritz Sierk, owner of The Coach Sports Bar on West Main.

This one featured not only a fire engine and other emergency vehicles, but also the WFD’s antique engine, and that huge Teamsters semi, blasting music.

Hard to tell if Fritz saw it all; he seemed to have something in his eye for part of it.

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Knuckleheads help others in need

12 May

The Knuckleheads continue to show us why they’re such a valued part of our Webster community.

For the last few weeks Len Dummer and the folks at Knucklehead Craft Brewing they have been collecting food and toiletries for people in need. Patrons have been delivering bags of donations  which staff members have been organizing and distributing to the homeless and refugee families.

And they’re not done yet. They’re asking everyone to continue to drop items off. Len Dummer writes on his Facebook page,


Items for homeless should be individual servings like peanut butter cracker packs, packets of tuna (can be opened by hand), nutrition bars, beef jerky, Slim Jims, raisins, dried fruit, any kind of nuts, single rolls of toilet paper, bars of soap, etc.

Items for families could be: canned goods, pasta sauce, dried pasta, salsa, corn chips, canned soups, snacks of all sorts, drinks (like Gatorade or other), toilet paper, bars of soap, boxes of mac & cheese.

Check out their Facebook page for more information, and consider lending a hand! Helping others out during these scary times helps us all. 

Knucklehead Craft Brewing is located at 426 Ridge Rd. in West Webster.

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An update on Bella’s Bumbas

5 Apr

In March 2017, I first introduced my readers to Webster residents Rebecca Orr and Marty Parzynski and their incredible grass-roots organization Bella’s Bumbas when I wrote about them in my D&C East Extra column.  (And here is a follow-up I wrote in January 2018.)

Their niece Bella was born in 2015 with spina bifida, which caused paralysis of her lower limbs. Troubled by Bella’s inability to move around and interact with other children, they did a little research and found a posting on Pinterest about how to make a toddler-sized wheelchair using a commercially-available “Bumbo” infant seat and a child’s bicycle tires. Marty got to work, and before long had built one for his niece. He called it “Bella’s Bumba.”

When word started spreading about what Marty had done and how it had changed Bella’s life, he and Rebecca started getting requests for Bella’s Bumbas from other parents. So they set up a workshop in the garage and started to mass-produce the wheelchairs, using mostly donated parts. They asked families only to cover the shipping costs.

Bella’s Bumbas has grown steadily since those early days, and to date Rebecca and Marty have built and shipped more than 1400 chairs to children all around the world, still only charging families for shipping costs — when they can’t arrange to deliver them personally.

Marty, the master builder, has also continued to develop their product, coming up with design improvements specifically developed for children with particular disabilities.

I was thinking about these fine folks the other day and wondering how their “business” was faring in these difficult times. Rebecca filled me in, saying in her email:

Wow 3 years ????? Who would have thought we would still be “rollin” and growing the way we are…. We have been blessed with amazing volunteers, literally around the world now. We have made some amazing connections and have our little chairs in 36 countries.

During this this “social distancing”  time , we are missing our volunteers greatly . Uncle Marty is slowly but surely still making chairs, aunt Becky is learning, and has made her first chair. Our granddaughter Sage has been helping since we started and has become proficient enough for us to send parts to her home and volunteer her time remotely. She is assembling chassis then will drop them off (via her mom’s help) and we will attach the seats.

Even with everything else going on in the world today, requests for Bumbas are still “trickling in,” Rebecca said. But, she added, Corona has affected them in one big way: they’re beginning to run low on the shipping boxes that are usually donated to them regularly by businesses which are now closed.

The perfect sizes are 50 cm. x 45 cm. x 28 cm. (Rebecca uses two of these for the small chairs); 28″ x 20″ x 14″, and 29″ x 14″ x 24″ are great for the large chairs.

If you’re getting Amazon deliveries regularly, you might also have the boxes they need; the ones that say P5 on the bottom are perfect (25.75″ x 20.75″ x 16.5″).

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Bella, the little lady who inspired Bella’s Bumbas

So if you have any boxes that are the right size, and would like to donate them, please connect connect with Marty and Rebecca through the Bella’s Bumbas Facebook page or email They also still have a GoFundMe page if you’d like to send a direct donation.

And little Bella herself? She’s now almost 5 years old, and thanks to the strength she was able to build with her Bella’s Bumba, she’s now walking with help from a walker, and is even taking a few independent steps. This for a young lady whom doctors said would never walk, and maybe even never sit up unassisted.

Here are several other photos from the Bella’s Bumbas workshops:

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Corona or not, we need our fish fries

3 Apr

It’s Friday, it’s Lent, and world-stopping virus or not, we need our fish fries.

The D&C actually ran an article this morning (which can be seen online here)  about afish fry lot of places around town where you can get a fish fry today. I’d like to add to that list these three Webster Village restaurants, who feature these options on their websites, all which can be ordered for take-out:

Barry’s Old School Irish, 2 West Main St.

Fish n’ Chips ($13) — Irish cider-battered cod served with pub chippers and wrapped in local newspaper. Served with choice of either Irish curry sauce or homemade tartar sauce. Barry’s only serves this on Fridays and they always sell out, so call well ahead.

Carl’s Pizza Kitchen, 9 South Ave.

* Fish Fry ($13.99) 12 oz. panko-breaded haddock with french fries, mac salad or coleslaw and tartar sauce (Friday only!). Carl’s also has seafood bisque.

Pub 235, 235 North Ave.

* Haddock Dinner ($15) — a choice of beer-battered, panko-breaded or broiled. Served with a choice of two sides.

* Haddock French ($20) — Lightly egg-battered and sauteed in a sherry, lemon and wine sauce, over spaghettini pasta. Served with a side salad.

Webster Hots, 55 East Main St.

* Fish Sandwich ($5.99) — Beer-battered haddock on a hard roll

* Pub-style fish and chips ($8.99) — Platter with 8 oz. beer-battered cod and a double order of fries

* Fish Fry ($11.99) — Large beer-battered haddock fillet with fries and mac salad or cole slaw

Brimont Bistro (24 West Main) also offers fish, but not a traditional fish fry. And of course, there are plenty of places outside the village but in Webster where you can get one, so check online and let’s continue to support our local restaurants!

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Support our local restaurants and get some good eats to go

27 Mar

small town

Holy cow, does the Village of Webster have a lot of great restaurants. I came to that realization when I started to come up with a list for this blog.

Somebody asked me a little while ago if I knew of any village restaurants offering take-out. At the time I only knew for sure about a few of them, but I knew there must be many others.

There sure are. Here’s a list. I’m hoping this will be a good resource for all of us who are getting sick and tired of making dinner at home every night and REALLY need to get some take-out. You can stop by for take-out or most of these places will deliver (check the websites for details).

To make this easier on me, I did not include hours of operation or menus. You can also find that information on their web or Facebook pages.  Also remember that many of these restaurants do use food delivery services like DoorDash and UberEats, so look into that option.

First, here’s the short list of restaurants which DON’T appear to be offering take-out at this time: The Filling Station, The Coach, Golden Boys (couldn’t find any info on their websites) and Burke’s Grill (the information is sketchy. Best to call them at 585-265-1370). If I’m wrong about any of these, let me know.


Barry’s Old School Irish, 2 W. Main St. Offering their homemade menu and homemade Irish cream. 585-545-4258.

BC’s Chicken Coop, 159 W. Main St. They just started offering low-cost delivery even outside the Webster area. Call (585) 265-1185.

Brimont Bistro, 24 W. Main St. “We will be here for to go orders and larger take out catering orders as we have always done. Lunch menu will be served during dinner hours as well as lunch hours, entree prices will be reduced by $3 to $5 during this time.” Call

Jojo Bistro & Wine Bar, 42 East Main St. Just started up their to-go options on Thursday. Order through their website, They also have a wine special going on and are accepting cash tips to split among their displaced employees.

eat localMaria’s Mexican  Restaurant, 75 W. Main St. They’re open Wed. through Saturday 3 to 8 p.m. You can order on the web at, and if you have any problems you can call 585-872-1237 or 585-872-5753. They’re also preparing take-our margaritas!

Pub 235, 235 North Ave. Pick-ups will be available 4 to 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday. They’re also filling growlers, selling 32-ounce mason jars, and wine by the bottle. Call 585-216-1750 for delivery (Webster-Ontario-Penfield, $10) or for pick-up.

ROC Style Chicken & Burger, 5 W. Main. Webster location: “We are still doing takeout and pickup during regular hours. In both locations! Webster and Chili. for the details….we (Webster location) are also offering mix and match six packs of to-go beer/cider/white claws as well as half off bottles of wine. Call (585) 236-1902, or order online from Webster at

Village Bakery, 44 E. Main St. The Village Bakery is accepting online pre-orders only for pick-up or delivery, Wednesday through Sunday from 9 a.m. to 11 p.m. There’s a $10 delivery fee. They won’t be handling any payments or selling additional items at the store. Place your order at

Waffle Factory, 30 North Ave. Accepting orders for pick up (call 585-626-1152), through GrubHub or DoorDash, or you can step up to their window and order there. Then you can sit in the park next door while you wait!

Webster Hots, 55 E. Main St. Accepting orders by phone (585 -265-0824) and online at They’re open at 11 a.m. every day, till 11 p.m. on weekdays,  1 a.m. Friday and Saturday and 8 p.m. on Sunday.


Of course, pizza is always an easy go to-meal, and most of us order them by phone anyway, so not much different there. Here are some handy phone numbers for reference:

Carl’s Pizza Kitchen, 9 South Ave., 585-236-1819. “No contact free delivery, curbside pickup or take out”

Martino’s Pizzeria, 160 W. Main St., 585-872-4140. Hours for pickup or delivery are 4 to 9 p.m. daily. Curbside pick up and no contact delivery are available.

Marvin Mozzeroni’s, 27 W. Main St.  (585) 872-1990.  “Touchless delivery” and “curbside pickup” are available.

Salvatore’s Old Fashioned Pizzeria, 195 North Ave., 585-872-2210.  Until March 31, Salvatore’s is also offering 20% off orders for active military, first-responders and health workers with employee IDs.

Rhino’s Pizzeria & Deli, 85 Donovan St., 585-872-3150.

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Let’s support our local businesses

26 Mar

shop localLooking for a way to help others during this difficult time? Here’s a great one: support your local businesses by buying gift cards.

Many Village of Webster businesses are offering discounts on their gift cards, so now is a great time to stock up for later or to give to friends for gifts. Here’s the current list, and it’s being updated every day (log onto for the latest information).

Beyond Cuts Salon: 15% added to all Gift Certificates and Gift Cards .. Available in any amount. Call or text 585-872-5531 to purchase.

Savage Chef, A weekly service that provides fully prepared fresh healthy meals for delivery or pickup: Save 10% on all gift certificates and gift cards, available in any amount. Order directly through their website.

Yesterday’s Muse Books, used, new, rare, and collectible books in all subject areas and age ranges: Save 10% on all gift certificates and gift cards, available in any amount.
Digital gift cards available in the shop’s online shopping cart and redeemable on their website. Print gift certificate orders taken by phone (credit card) or email (PayPal), and redeemable in-store once quarantines are lifted. Use this link to order gift cards to use online. Order by phone at (585) 265-9295, Monday-Saturday from 10-1, and leave message if no answer. Or by email:

Barry’s Old School Irish gift certificates and gift cards available in any amount. Phone  (585) 545-4258, from Tuesday-Saturday 11:30 a.m.  to 7 p.m. You can email them at

Webster Hots: Save 10% on all gift certificates and gift cards, available in any amount. Purchase by phone at (585) 734-5620. They’re open Monday 4 to 11 p.m., Tuesday through Thursday 11 a.m. to 11 p.m., Friday and Saturday 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., and Sunday 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Furnari Jewelers, specializing in diamonds and custom made jewelry: Save 10% on all gift certificates and gift cards, available in any amount. Contact Mark at: or call (585) 683-9917.

Finns Garage: Save 10% on all gift certificates and gift cards, available in any amount. Call (585) 265-9620 Monday-Friday 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Performance Hobbies: Save 10% on all gift certificates and gift cards, available in any amount. Available by calling (585) 872-4990, Monday through Friday 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. You can also email

Chandeliers Boutique, boutique shopping at affordable prices. Clothing, jewelry, purses, accessories, gifts and more: save 10% on all gift certificates and gift cards, available in any amount.  Order by calling (585) 622-1266.

Professional Nutrition Services/Holistic Health Center, alternative/holistic therapies to help you achieve your best health: Save 10% on all gift certificates and gift cards, available in any amount. Order by calling (585) 787-4251 or emailing 

Webster Interiors Home Furnishings & Decor, home furnishings, window treatments, and design services. Save 10% on all gift certificates and gift cards, available in any amount. Order by calling (585) 545-4503 or emailing

R Salon, save 10% on all gift certificates and gift cards, available in any amount. Email

Also, stay tuned everyone, because I’m compiling a list of all of our village restaurants that are offering take-out. I’ll post that in a day or two.

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Sewers and supplies desperately needed

21 Mar

maskAs you probably have heard, local hospitals are getting dangerously low on face masks. Thanks to several agencies and businesses reaching out via social media, a lot of volunteers have stepped up to offer their assistance, but supplies are also needed.

Today I received this email from our friends at The Village Quilt Shoppe, whose owners Vanetta and Monique are helping lead the charge in this effort, asking to help spread the word. They included this letter from the staff at Strong Memorial Hospital detailing their needs:

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

Emergency healthcare workers are writing to you with an urgent request in this trying time. The unfortunate truth of the COVID-19 epidemic is that there is an inadequate number of surgical masks to keep healthcare workers safe while we care for infected patients. This is particularly concerning as infected healthcare workers are unable to work which reduces the number of patients that we can care for. Given the nature of this illness, infected healthcare workers could spread the virus to healthy patients prior to exhibiting symptoms; in fact, many people who have COVID-19 are completely asymptomatic but are still contagious.

We expect to see more cases in the coming days and weeks, and we will run out of masks before the manufacturing sector can make and distribute replacements. We anticipate that we will be left with handkerchiefs as our only protection between us and patients infected with COVID-19. We are asking you to help by making as many masks as you are willing and capable of making to help keep the emergency healthcare workers safe.

There are several instructional videos on YouTube…. Some feature “N95 type” with
replaceable filters which offer a benchmark of protection that is desirable but not truly necessary. If you are able to sew the fabric portion without the filter we would be equally as grateful.

Monique adds,

They are inserting a Merv13 anti-viral filter that is typically used in furnaces. If you have any of those or want to purchase them from any local hardware and include them with the masks that would be much appreciated. This is a grass roots effort with zero funding.

I am also sending a link to the Hickey Freeman project working for Rochester General. They are not quite up and running yet but you can register at this email and they will also need sewists:

You can find directions on how to fashion a mask at this website.

Here also is a video tutorial of the kind of mask that The Quilt Shoppe volunteers will be working on.

Supplies also needed

For those of us (like me) who did not get the sewing gene, we can help by donating supplies. Here’s what’s needed:

1/4 “elastic (if you have wider we can cut it to size)
5” or larger metal twist ties
Cotton fabric (no stretch, tight weave)
MERV 13 air filter (these are optional)

The Village Quilt Shoppe is happy to collect the supplies and completed masks.  To connect with them, and for more information on exactly what supplies are needed, check out their website here.

Also, if you live or know someone who lives near Fairport, Sew Creative in Perinton is also looking for sewers and supplies.

THANK YOU EVERYONE! The Webster community is amazing.

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A Coronavirus update from local agencies and businesses

13 Mar

As the very real concerns about the spread of the Coronavirus continue to grow, I have been getting daily emails from organizations around town who want to reassure their clients that they’re taking it seriously, or who have announced cancellations.

Below are direct quotes from emails I have received so far, and I will continue to update this blog as I receive them. If your organization has information you would like me to share, please email me at

Balance Webster 

As the coronavirus COVID-19 dominates the news and is affecting more and more people and communities, we thought it was appropriate to share our thoughts with you.

We’re staying up with keeping a clean studio like mad yogis! We’re regularly cleaning blocks, eye bags, blankets, and door knobs and have cleaners, soaps and sanitizers readily available for you. If you have your own props, we certainly encourage you to bring them.

If it makes more sense for you to practice from home look for some live streaming from Erica, perhaps very soon!

With love,

The Balance staff 💛

Webster Public Library 

Due to updated recommendations from the New York Commissioner of Health, we have decided to suspend all of our upcoming programs and events for the time being. This includes all daytime, evening, and weekend programs, but does not include individual bookings of our study rooms and Community Room. The reasoning behind this is that we would like to do our part in limiting the spread of the virus via large gatherings of people, a recent precaution by the New York Commissioner of Health.

If you are currently registered for one of the upcoming programs we have cancelled, we will be in touch with you in the coming weeks once we decide if and when we can reschedule. Once programs resume as normal, we will let everyone know immediately—stay tuned! We’ll be back!

The library will remain open its regular hours at this time, continuing our increased cleaning schedule. Don’t forget to utilize our Drive-Up, Pick-Up service—if there’s an item you want, let us know in advance and then call us when you’re here. You pull up out front and we’ll bring your items out to your car.

As always, if you have questions or concerns for us, please don’t hesitate to give us a call at (585) 872-7075, or email

Webster Central PTSA

In accordance with guidance from Monroe County Department of Health, effective IMMEDIATELY, all PTSA events and meetings will be suspended until Sunday, April 12. We will continue to evaluate and update regarding the developing situation. Thank you for your patience.

(Missy’s note: so far that does NOT include Community Arts Day, which is scheduled for April 18. But stay tuned for any updates about that.)

Heritage Christian Stables

We have entered the third week of our Winter Classic Session of lessons. Registration for Spring Session has begun. If you have a rider who would like to be in the session, please contact us. The volunteer session for Spring will be on When to Help soon.

We have been assessing the COVID-19 situation, and taking measures to keep volunteers, riders and staff safe. As of now, with our small class sizes, lessons are proceeding as scheduled. If the decision is made to cancel, we will let everyone know as needed. PLEASE stay home if you are feeling unwell, and wash your hands before coming to the stable. We have hand sanitizer in the barn and the observation area as well.

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Barry’s Old School Irish gearing up for St. Patrick’s Day

4 Mar

barry's old school

Now that it’s finally March and Valentine’s Day is in the rear-view mirror, planning for St. Patrick’s Day here at our little corner Irish pub is in high gear. And of course, when Danny and Jessica Barry do the planning, the St. Patrick’s Day celebrating can no way be contained to just one day.

Starting Sunday March 8, Barry’s will host a series of events, one almost every day, building up to a full schedule of events on Parade Day and St. Patrick’s Day itself.

You can check the Barry’s Old School Irish Facebook page for more details, and I’ll post more soon, but here are some highlights:

  • Sunday March 8: Whiskey tasting from 2 to 4 p.m.  Cost is $20 per person and registration is required.
  • Tuesday March 10: Our weekly Barry’s Run/Walk,  and free etched pint glasses on the house, courtesy Guinness. 6 to 8 p.m.
  • Wednesday March 11: Trivia Night, beginning at 7:15 p.m. Gotta register for this one, too, since table space is limited.
  • Thursday March 12: Open Mic Night at 7 p.m.
  • Friday March 13: Irish Music Sing Along with Kevin Reynolds
  • Saturday March 14 (Parade Day): Music, dance and food all day beginning at 8 a.m. including, for the first time in several years, a return engagement by Barry’s Crossing.
  • Tuesday March 17: More music, dancing, food, great drink, bagpiper, all day.

Check the Barry’s Old School Irish Facebook page for details.

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