Meath Travellers Workshops are very busy helping organize a unique and worthwhile community trip to Canada in a bid to strengthen links with a Canadian town, also called Navan and promote the Irish town of Navan. The project Navan2Navan is the brainchild of the Navan Shamrock Festival Committee, of which MTW have always played a pivotal role in putting on every year.
The Canadian town of Navan was founded by a Navan man called Michael O’Meara who emigrated there in the 1840’s. He was an entrepreneur and succeeded in establishing a trading post which developed into a post office for the area. Being a native of Brew’s Hill, Navan and like many immigrants even to this day, his heart was in his native town in Ire-land and so he called this town Navan.
The Navan2Navan project will involve about forty people from the town travelling to Canada to participate in the 150th Navan Fair, which is held there annually from 8th to 14th August. The purpose of this visit is to promote Irish music and culture and the eventual twining of the two towns.
Within the group travelling are accomplished musicians, singers, native Irish language speakers and set dancers. Members of Meath Travellers Workshops will bring information on the Irish Traveller culture, traditions and heritage. This festival will be the ideal showcase for Navan Co. Meath to bring attention not only to our town, but to the rich heritage of Co. Meath and encourage tourism and investment in the future.
The primary reason behind this trip to Navan, Canada is to formalize relations between the two communities and to make arrangements for Navan, Canada to become the shop window to pro-mote our town of Navan, and indeed the entire East coast of Ireland and show what is to offer within our rich traditions and culture. What better way to do this than through our music, dance and the Irish language?
The Traveller participants will be showcasing our rich tradition in story-telling, our unique ‘Cant’ language and tinsmithing skills.
The Canadian Ambassador in Ireland Loyola Hearn and the Irish Ambassador in Canada Ray Bassett are working jointly with the project and have been in-credibly supportive.
This could easily be the start of something big in terms of tour-ism for our great town and county. In 2013 ‘The Gathering’ initiative will be promoted to the people of Canada and all over the world. The Navan2Navan group will also be sharing information about The Gathering Ire-land 2013 when Ireland will hold a year long celebration of what is best about our people, landscape, culture and heritage. Ire-land is inviting everyone who is Irish born, Irish bred or Irish in spirit to heed the call to The Gathering.
If you would like to get involved with the Navan2Navan project, make contact on Face-book by looking up “Michael O Meara” or call 087 6031188