WATCH: New Limerick-based initiative Croí Glas to 'take ownership' of the River Shannon

Anna Gibson-Steel, Richard Lynch and Nóirín Ní Riain launching Croí Glas Picture: Sophie Goodwin/ILoveLimerick

Anna Gibson-Steel, Richard Lynch and Nóirín Ní Riain launching Croí Glas Picture: Sophie Goodwin/ILoveLimerick

A NEW Limerick-based initiative that counts comedian Jimmy Carr among its ambassadors is to utilise arts and culture as a way of encouraging people to express their love of the River Shannon.

Croí Glas, the brainchild of sacred singer, Nóirín Ní Riain and Holistic Practitioner, Anna Gibson Steel, who wanted to do something positive around the river, intends to celebrate and create positive energy around the Shannon.

The duo, who enlisted the support of I Love Limerick founder Richard Lynch to help them develop their idea, believe that project will greatly benefit and change people’s perception of the River Shannon.

“If we each take ownership of creating our own positive relationship with the Shannon River we can create tremendous wellbeing potential for our communities. The time has come to listen to the River,” said Ms Gibson-Steel, wife of former rugby player Peter Clohessy.

Ms Ní Riain describes Croí Glas as “a platform to collect this energy by bringing together individuals and groups who engage with the River Shannon via arts, music, culture, sports, education, history, mythology and even the environment”.

Croí Glas is now encouraging people in Limerick to get involved and all are welcome.

“The public is invited to create their own events inspired by the Shannon and register them on the Croi Glas website so they can be shared with the wider community. In this way, all of us will be on the same page and work together in celebration of the Shannon,” said Richard.

Croí Glas ambassadors include composer and musician Míchéal Ó Súilleabháin, comedian Jimmy Carr, singer and poet Moley Ó Súilleabháin, Lough Gur Centre Manager Kate Harrold, Colman Byrne of Limerick Open Navigation, Ireland rugby star Peter Clohessy and Niamh O’Carroll who won the UL Outstanding Contribution to Society/Humanitarian Award in 2009.

Croí Glas will be launched officially at 2.30pm on Saturday, March 17, at the Hunt Museum, following the St Patrick’s Day Parade. Richard Lynch will act as MC and a number of performances will take place.

Croí Glas’ first official event Listen to the River, will take place at 6.30 pm on Sunday, March 18. The concept for this event is the brainchild of Ray O'Halloran of Limerick City Build to “bring together arts, culture, mythology, music, social inclusion, boating and water-sports to the general public”.

Theatre practitioner Ann Blake will be producing an event where the Goddess Sionna will be returned to the River Shannon surrounded by three crafts, created by Limerick City Build especially for the event, with one of the craft transporting the famous uilleann pipe player, Mickey Dunne.

On the opposite banks of the Shannon, the event will be celebrated musically with Noírín Ní Riain on one side and Owen and Moley Ó Súilleabháin on the other.

The Croí Glas logo will be unveiled in spectacular fashion by fly-boarders flying above the river, followed by a light display and fireworks from Limerick City and County Council. The event can be best viewed on Clancy's Strand between Sarsfield Bridge and Thomond Bridge.

For more information see www.croiglas.ie.